Sail Amsterdam

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by Jctravel1983 on December 13, 2010

Sail Amsterdam

Sail Amsterdam was created to celebrate the 700 anniversary of Amsterdam in 1975. It was such a success that it was worth repeating, since 1975 is held every five years. The event offers an impressive array of Tall Ships from around the world, but there is still much more to do.


Only since 1990 the city of Ijmuiden has been really involved in the evement: Pre Sail IJmuiden. On 14 and 15 August, the festivities starts with the Portfestival IJmuiden. There has been a naval review of old fishing boats and you could see modern commercial ships. Culturally too, there was much to see: classical music, soul, sailor choirs, street performers, children theater and so on. On August 18, during pre Sail you could admire the ships in port.

SAIL IN Parade

August 19, was the day of the SAIL IN Parade, you could along the North Sea from IJmuiden to Amsterdam to enjoy 50 tall ships and hundreds of other special vehicles. It is an impressive spectacle: the Tall Ships, replicas, modern ships and naval vessels. The participating ships were introduced into the Sixhaven greeted with a salute protocol, first as the ‘Clipper Stad Amsterdam’ with the Dutch Prince Willem Alexander on board. From 10.00 hours the first ships departed from IJmuiden, from 13.00 hours they arrived in Amsterdam.

A nice spot

This event is always recommended to not use the car as much and leave the banks by foot, bicycle or public transport.

* The Dutch Railways had extra trains. From the station Beverwijk, Zaandam and Amsterdam Sloterdijk you could go with regular buses to different locations along the North Sea. From station Zaandam there were shuttle buses to and from the canal dike.
* Did you come by car, you had to take into account limited traffic capacity.
* People with a disability had access to designated handicapped spots.

The visit of the Tall Ships in port

It's great to see the ships sail past by, but it's also fun to visit. Almost all Tall Ships on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (20 to Aug. 22) were are open to the public between 10.00 hours and 16.00 hours.

A few impressive ships

* Kruzenstern: This four masted barque was built in 1926 in Hamburg and has a length of 114.5 meters. Kaliningrad is the homeport and the ship has the Russian flag. The ship is already one of the few authentic tall ships of this size still in service, as a training ship.

*Sedov: This is the largest sailing yacht ever built as a German freighter, now it is used as a training ship. The length is 118 meters, it’s home is Murmansk, built year: 1921. Like the Kruzenstern this ship is restored in the eighties. The name comes from the Russian Sedov oceanographer and polar explorer Georgy Sedov (1877-1914).

* Mir: despite her young age, the ship was built in 1988, a truly classic windjammer: a ship designed to sail fast. The ship is used for sail training and education in marine science and oceanography.

People in a wheelchair

It has this year an additional focus on opening up the event site for people in wheelchairs. Each cluster has a disabled toilet, on certain parts of the route has given an alternative route, when such as a bridge is too narrow. You can borrow a wheelchair for a fee of 5 euro’s (bring a valid ID). Furthermore, there are people present who can help with the ADL, they are recognizable by jackets with a wheelchair logo. ADL stands for Activities daily necessities, these are all activities that everyone needs to accomplish the days to come. On the website of SAIL, you can download a wheelchair friendly route.


On Friday, August 20 from 12 hours you can enjoy home-built boats in canals. They have a requirement but one: They must float.


Each day ends with a fireworks show at SAIL. You can enjoy it every evening at 22.15 hours only on Saturday will start at 22.00. It takes about fifteen minutes.

My opinion

It is a fantastic event and glad we were in Amsterdam to participate! The Tall Ships are beautiful and impressive to see, but all small boats are worth seeing. It is very busy around Amsterdam and IJmuiden but there's always a spot for you. We were incredibly lucky with the weather! Good atmosphere and friendly people. Hope to be there again next time!
Sail Amsterdam Tall Ships and Events
Kattenburgerstraat 7
Amsterdam, 1018
020 6811804

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