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Take a ride on Rotterdam’s taxi boats

On the move, City tips

Taxi! Taxi! Taxi Boat!!

Taxi boats? Sounds perplexing for most European cities but it’s more than normal for Rotterdam. There are fifty taxi stops along the river Maas. Two ways to get a boat: you can call your boat in advance to be sure you get in or you call it when you arrive at one of the docks. This water taxi network is unique in Europe.

The black and yellow boats reach up to 50 km/h. The fastest way to get from A to B in Rotterdam! And despite the speed it is safe. The water taxi boatmen work part-time on the taxis and the rest of their time they work on other ships which are around 100 times as big as the taxis. So for them driving the taxi is like riding a toy car!

If you want to take it slow, the classic water taxis are slower (and cheaper!) and good for a relaxed sightseeing trip along the river. Have a look at the historic and the modern harbours. The river Maas is one of the busiest in the world. You will see huge container ships next to you. They are already impressive from far away but have you ever seen them from a frog perspective while sitting in a tiny boat? We never felt so small!

Tip: Plan your boat ride in the evening and enjoy the panorama of Rotterdam during the sunset.

Practical Information

To catch a water taxi you will need to make a reservation one day ahead either online or by phone. If you didn’t remember to book your ride early enough, and want to make a reservation still for the present day just pick up the phone.

Note that water taxis can pick you up only from the dedicated landing stations, while they are plenty of stations (50!) it is worth checking the most convenient ones for you.  

The classic water taxis carry passengers between Hotel New York and Veerhaven or Leuvehaven. The timetables and routes are fixed. No reservation is needed. The journey is paid on board.