Holland Sail. Sailing on traditional sailing ships in the Netherlands.
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The trip

Where can I park the car and find the ship?

A few weeks before departure, you'll receive your departure information from us. This will include details regarding the ship's harbour, a route description and a map. Available parking lots will be marked on the map. There's a secure parking lot in Harlingen.

Does Holland Sail offer transportation to and from the harbor?

While we do not have our own bus transportation, Holland Sail offers a bus arrangement service for groups of 20 people or more. Read more about the bus arrangement service.

Is it possible to board the ship earlier than stated in the contract?

Unfortunately not. Before you board, the ship is being cleaned and prepared for your sailing trip. The skipper and crew really need the time allotted for cleaning, inspection and preparation to make sure the ship is ready for you and your party.

How many hours will we sail per day?

Usually a ship leaves harbour at around 10.00. This should give you enough time in the morning to have breakfast and do some groceries, if you wish. Should you wish to start sailing earlier or later, that's up to you to discuss with the skipper. The skipper will try to adhere to your wishes, if possible.

However, on the Waddenzee, departure times will be restricted by the tide. Don't worry: the skipper will inform you about the possibilities. As long as it's possible, it's up to you. Should you wish to visit one of the Islands, go shopping in one of the harbour towns, take a hike or a bike ride or visit a museum, that can all be planned.

Which routes will we sail?

We have no fixed routes. You can discuss your wishes on board with the skipper and depending on wind and weather decide on a route. In case you would like discuss the route in advance, our shore crew can advise you as well. 

Possible sailing routes during weekend trips:

  • From Harlingen sail to one of Islands in the Waddenzee (Texel, Vlieland or Terschelling). Alternatively, you can sail through the floodgates along the Frisian coast of the IJsselmeer to the harbour towns like Makkum, Workum or Stavoren.
  • From Enkhuizen sail along the west coast (North Holland side) of the IJsselmeer to harbour towns like Medemblik or Den Oever. Or cross the lake towards the east coast (Frisian side) to Makkum, Workum, Stavoren or Lemmer. Alternatively, you can head on south to the Markermeer and see Hoorn, Volendam and Lelystad (Batavia harbour).

Sailing routes during (mid)week trips:
During longer sailing trips it is possible to sail a longer tour and combine some of the options mentioned above.

When will the skipper not set sail?

A stormy wind can negatively impact the safety. For your own safety, when the wind reaches force 7 or higher, the skipper will make a judgment call on whether it is safe to set sail. 

Are life jackets available?

There are enough life jackets available for a ship full of adults or adolescents. If you're bringing children, please inform us of their weight, so we can make sure we have the right life jackets for them as well.

What can I do against seasickness?

Seasickness usually happens when a ship makes rocking motions in the water. Our sailing barges are quite stable in the water, since the bottom is flat and the wind in the sails keeps the rocking to a minimum. We seldom experience guests being seasick. However in case you are sensitive to seasickness, the following points of advise.

  • eat and sleep well;
  • stay on deck while the ship is sailing;
  • avoid coffee and coke;

As seasickness is typically caused by a motion that is unseen, a fixed view of the horizon along with the fresh sea are is a common cure, in some cases combined with a tablet against motion sickness.

How can I contact the skipper?

We'll include the contact details of the skipper in the travel information we'll send you a few weeks before departure. These details are also listed on the page of the ship.

Please take into account that skippers spend a lot of time sailing and they might not be available or is out of reach to take your call. For urgent matters, you can also call our office.