It is so peaceful, so different and has such simple beauty that it hardly seems real – gently gliding along small canals past old but pretty thatched-roof farmhouses.
You can turn down a “side street” (another small canal) and drift under a wooden bridge where an elderly resident may be strolling over to see a neighbor. No this is not Venice, or Amsterdam.
It is too quiet, too serene and remote. It is so calm that its nickname of the “Dutch Venice” may give a false impression of size and crowds and commercialism.
Here in Holland’s water village of Giethoorn the loudest sound you can normally hear is the quacking of a duck or the noise made by other birds. Giethoorn is in the province of Overijssel in the east of the Netherlands, a green and still area.
Giethoorn is at the centre of Overijssel’s canal system. Indeed, the little village is so dependent on its waterways, many of the houses cannot be reached by road. When the postman delivers the mail he travels by punt.
Boating has been a popular tourist attraction here for years, with 90km of canoe trails and scores of motorboats to rent, but now, instead of conventional outboard motors, the hire shops stock so-called ‘whisper boats’ – dinghies driven by electric motor.
Giethoorn’s name originates from the first inhabitants’ discovery of hundreds of goat horns (gietehorens) in the marshland, remnants of a 10th-century flood.
Today no goat horns will be found here, but the vegetation is quite distinct still. Here you will find yourself on the edge of vast series of lakes and canals, ideal for boaties, angling and paddle-cycling.
BIKE & SOLEX
Footpaths beside the canals are ideal for walking or cycling, and there’s a wide selection of cafes and restaurants – Rent a Bike ». For longer trips tourists also prefer to rent our motorized bikes or
Solex Here »
The best way to explore Giethoorn and the myriad of canals is obviously by joining a canal cruise. Our local partner will be able to guide you through the place and show you the most important places in this quiet village.
It is best to book a canal cruise in advance as there are a limited number of departures daily and the popularity of Giethoorn soared during the last few years.
You can also opt for a PRIVATE TOUR HERE ».
Alternatively, visitors can hire a small electric boat that requires little technical skill to operate, and seats two or three comfortably.
Taking a canoe can be a favorite way to enjoy the scenic surroundings on the canals.
See here for Renting Details »
THINGS TO DO IN GIETHOORN
Being on the water is a pleasant way of spending an afternoon, gently puttering down the narrow waterways, under gracefully arching bridges, past cosy thatched cottages. There are three canal-side museums to visit and the Schreur shipyard, where the Giethoorn punt is built.
Read More »
Together with our local partner in Giethoorn we have many attractive offers for families, groups and singles, like Night Boat Tours, All Day Tours or Afternoon Tours in which you can enjoy a drink, a snack or a picnic and also lots of activities.
See our GUIDED TOURS AND PACKAGES OFFER ».
ACTIVITES AND GAMES
If need need more ideas to plan your time in Giethoorn take a look at our GAMES below you can Book Here »
Follow this link to find yourself a place to Stay in Giethoorn – a wide selection of hotels and bed&breakfasts reviewed by other visitors.