There are so many things to see and to do in Giethoorn. It’s nicknamed the “Venice of the North” and “Dutch Venice.”
One thing to do is to take a boat ride through Giethoorn canals on an electric boat. During the ride, you’ll pass beautiful farmhouses and under tall wooden bridges.
If you’re looking for something fun and a little bit different to do in Giethoorn, then consider booking a boat tour. This is a great way to get the full experience of the village without battling with crowds and getting stuck in traffic.
You can also rent a 'whisper boat' in Giethoorn, which is super quiet and a great option for families. These boats are a great way to spend an afternoon sailing around the canals and between the old farmhouses in Giethoorn.
The best time to go on a boat tour in Giethoorn is when the tourist bus loads have left the town, which means you’ll be able to experience the true magic of this picturesque village.
You can book a boat tour in Giethoorn for 1 hour or 2 hours, or you can request a longer trip if you’re more than 10 people. Your skipper will give you information about the village and the national park, and help you explore the flora, fauna and history of this magical area.
Explore by foot
One of the best ways to explore Giethoorn is by foot. The car-free village, known as the Venice of the Netherlands, has more than 180 canals and bridges, making it a picturesque sight in the Dutch province of Overijssel.
A walking tour is a wonderful way to get a feel for the town and its history. You can stroll along a footpath that stretches alongside the canals, taking in the beautiful thatched-roof houses and stopping for lunch at a canal-side cafe or restaurant.
Boat tours are another popular activity in Giethoorn. You can rent various types of boats, including sloops and canoes.
If you prefer to stay dry, try a stand-up paddleboard (SUP). These are slightly modified surfboards that allow you to glide across the channels.
Visit a museum
Giethoorn is a quaint, picturesque village with thatched roofs and canals lined with wooden footbridges. It is one of the most beautiful places in the Netherlands.
The museum is a good way to learn more about the history of the town, and also about the people who lived here in the past. The museum has a free audio tour that can be enjoyed in English, German, Chinese, and Dutch.
Another option is to visit the Museum Farm 't Olde Maat Uus, a renovated farmhouse that offers a glimpse into life in Giethoorn a hundred years ago. You can choose to take a guided tour or go at your own pace through the house.
You can also explore the Museum De Oude Aarde, a gem and mineral museum that has a large collection of gemstones and fossils. The collection includes pieces from around the world, such as petrified tree trunks and Australian agates. This museum is open all year long and can be visited without reservations.
Spend time on the water
Giethoorn is known for its canals, and visitors can spend time enjoying the picturesque scenery as they glide along. There are many restaurants with a lovely waterfront terrace where you can relax and have a drink or snack.
- Boating is also one of the most popular activities in Giethoorn, as visitors can hire a boat to take in the village and its surrounding landscape. The hour-long guided boat excursions travel past tourist-friendly villages and through tiny canals.
- The water in Giethoorn is shallow, so it's perfect for families with kids. You can even bring a picnic and enjoy it on a boat tour!
- As you're gliding through the canals in Giethoorn, be sure to look out for the thatched-roof farmhouses. These are the real gems of this picturesque village, and you'll want to see them all!