Amsterdam Like A Native: Life On A Houseboat With Airbnb

Amsterdam Like A Native:  Life On A Houseboat With Airbnb
| 2 min read

Have you ever imagined living on your very own houseboat in the middle of Amsterdam?

After a day of sightseeing, museum hopping or canal cruising you can simply stroll up to your houseboat moored at 101 Westerdok, turn the key in the lock and you are home. Booking through Airbnb, the location called “Stay on the water in the center,” ensures a most unusual visit to this city of canals.

Your hosts Jol and Stevin, will welcome you to their cozy accommodations, and will be ready to help you plan your trip. Airbnb encourages you to communicate with your prospective hosts and ask whatever you want, including early check-in, if available.

Location, location, location

the houseboat

Arriving in Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, it is a short and convenient train ride of less than fifteen minutes that brings you to the center of Amsterdam. This unique accommodation is superbly located a mere 15 minute walk from the Central Station.

Strolling along the waterfront in this newest neighbourhood of Amsterdam, you arrive at your destination, a flower lined dock, complete with bicycles, walk down a few steps and knock on the door of the houseboat. The best bars, eating establishments, shopping and nightlife are all within walking distance of this charming and unusual residence.

The neighbourhood where the houseboat is located was created in 2008, a part of urban renewal and reclamation, turning a train switching station and barn for locomotives into a sparkling new residential and commercial area. The neighbourhood boasts public buildings, hotels and residences as well as the Palace of Justice.

Several restaurants and coffee shops have sprung up in this quarter as well. With easy access to downtown Amsterdam, this location offers both quiet and privacy as well as proximity to city life.

Room with a view

Yellow tulips with view out on to the canal

A room on a houseboat is not quite like a standard hotel room, or even a studio apartment. Entering through a wooden door, the guestroom is in the former captain’s quarters and has a private entrance into a very tiny space that was the captain’s bridge complete with steering wheel.

A small table and two bar stools, adorned by a pot of yellow tulips, allow you to enjoy snacks or dinner here, watching the afternoon sun reflect off the water, and soaking up the special Amsterdam ambiance that only a river view can offer.

Life on a houseboat

Kitchen on the Houseboat

A short set of rather steep steps leads down from the navigation deck into a one room studio that is outfitted with everything you might need during your visit to Amsterdam.

A comfy queen size bed, soft linens, warm comforter, chairs, coffee table, TV, coffeepot, espresso maker and a fully outfitted kitchen with fridge and cooking burners, allows you to call this home for as long as you stay.

Coffee, tea and milk are provided as well. An ensuite bathroom complete with stall shower and fluffy towels on a heated rack completes the picture.

Round and about Amsterdam

Bicycles Available Free of Charge

A guidebook especially prepared by the hosts explains about the living quarters and provides an overview of the area as well, complete with maps and brochures. A final touch to this delightful accommodation are the two bikes complete with locks that are available at no extra charge. This of course allows one to feel like a native, and explore the city without wearing out your shoe leather or spending money on public transportation.

Staying on the water at this airbnb is everything that you could ask for!

In short, this airbnb rental provides comfort, hospitality, friendly hosts, wonderful location, free bikes, and espresso coffee on the house. The cost is less than that of a modest hotel room in Amsterdam. Who could ask for more?

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Naomi L. Baum, Ph.D., in an international consultant in the field of trauma and resilience. In this capacity, she has travelled widely working with communities that have been hit by earthquakes,...Read more

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