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Amsterdam Light Festival

See over 200 stunning light sculptures from over 30 international artists
Get the best view of the festival, with a custom canal tour
"A really nice experience! Amsterdam by night is magical and the cruise around the artworks is something I highly recommend, especially if it's your first time in the city."

City of Lights

See Amsterdam’s iconic canals transform into a glittering winter playground

Amsterdam Light Festival - Open Top Boat
Looking to capture perfect memories of this year’s festival? Then you’ll want to ride the open top cruise boat, where you can take beautiful photos of the artworks without any obstructions. It’s the most intimate experience of the festival, perfect for keen photographers, or for sprucing up your Instagram feed!
(120)
27.32 $19.92
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Amsterdam Light Festival from Leidseplein
If you can’t wait to get on the water, then this is the cruise for you! Now you can beat the crowds and jump straight on to the next boat, so you spend less time queuing and more time enjoying the festival itself. It sets sail from nightlife hotspot Leidseplein – ideal for celebrating afterwards!
(31)
27.32 $24.48
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Amsterdam Light Festival from Central Station
Get ahead of the game with a special discount! Our cruises follow a unique route which gets up close to every single dazzling sculpture in the festival. See the sights from the comfort of a specially designed boat and enjoy the info-packed audio guide that explains all about the festival and its many featured artists.
(204)
27.32 $24.48
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Amsterdam Light Festival - Historic Boat Experience
Cruise around the festival's illuminated highlights in a traditionally styled small canal boat. With only 12 passengers on board, it's a much cozier experience, and the complimentary gluhwein and thick blankets will help you beat the winter chill and get into the festive spirit.
(48)
$28.40
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What people are saying about Amsterdam Light Festival

"This cruise is definitely worth it – If you're in Amsterdam this winter you should try it out!"
This was a really great trip through the canals of Amsterdam. Our captain Flip moved us swiftly through the canals and paused at every artwork to give us time to take pictures. He also explained all the cool objects and buildings along the way. This cruise is definitely worth it – If you're in Amsterdam this winter you should try it out. My compliments to Flip, thanks for the lovely evening!
Really great. Tickets delivered instantly and there was no queuing at all to get on the cruise.

About the festival

A very modern tradition

The Light Festival already feels as integral to the Dutch wintertime as Sinterklaas, but it’s a relatively new celebration – the first festival was held in 2011. ‘Light Art’ has existed in various forms for centuries, but it was only with the advent of LED technology that the potential for creating truly retina-boggling sculptures really took off. The dimly lit Dutch canals proved too big an opportunity to miss, and ALF as we know it was born!

In the spotlight

An undeniable highlight of this year’s collection of installations is a lost cathedral, set to float in the Herengracht. Peter Snijder's work, "Portam Civitatis" will be easy to spot, thanks to weaving ropes and Gothic architectural elements. It looks like a 3D blueprint. You can also look out for "A Tale of Two Cities" by artists Paul Vendel and Sandra de Wolf. This glowing neon metropolis was designed to symbolise decay and resurrection, just like the famous 1859 novel by Charles Dickens from which it takes its name.

Best by boat

The festival transforms the ambience of the whole city, and you can definitely enjoy it from afar – or, if you want to be really Dutch, while pedalling across the cobblestones at breakneck speed. But the only way to get the authentic Light Festival experience is to see it from the water. Many of the sculptures reveal extra secrets when viewed from below, and you'll even get to travel through several massive artworks as you glide across the canals.

Keep it cosy

It might sound obvious, but this is a winter cruise, and Amsterdam can get notoriously chilly – especially when you're out on the water at night. The Earlybird and Skip The Line cruises keep things nice and toasty, but make sure to wrap up warm for the Open Top cruise, and bring an extra sweater just in case. There are plenty of blankets on the boats, and you'll be warmed by festive cheer in no time!