Everything You Need to Know about the Amsterdam Light Festival 2022-2023

The 11th edition of Amsterdam’s Light Festival is coming up, and we are excited! This edition of the Light festival will explore the extraordinary nature of light under the theme ‘Imagine Beyond.’ The theme will focus on how intangible light can reflect imagination, hope, and miracles. The festival will run from 1st December 2022 to 22nd January 2023. Curious to know more about the Amsterdam Light festival 2022 2023? Make sure to continue reading.

amsterdam light festival 2022 2023

What is Amsterdam Light Festival?

The Amsterdam light festival is an annual event where light installations and artworks are exhibited in the city. These artworks are usually designed for the festival by international and local designers, architects, and artists in the city. 

The festival originated from the 2009 ‘Christmas canal parade.’ The original creators of this were Vincent Horbach, Felix Guttmann and Raymond Borsboom. They organized the ‘Winter magic Amsterdam’ the following year with a boat parade and several other activities. In 2010, Rogier van der Heide, the acclaimed light designer, put on an exhibit that led the festival to concentrate on light, and the Amsterdam light festival was born. 

The Amsterdam light festival has exhibited light artworks annually for the past ten years, with the previous (tenth) edition happening between December 2021 and January 2022. Read on to find out what is Amsterdam light festival, how you can get the best experience, and when is Amsterdam light festival. 

When is the Amsterdam Light Festival?

The Amsterdam light festival dates have been constant throughout the years. It takes place as the year turns in the months of December and January. The canal boats usually operate from around 5:00 pm to 11:00 pm, from Monday to Sunday. However, the closing times on New Year’s Eve are slightly earlier. If you want to be sure of a certain timeslot, you can reserve your Amsterdam Light Festival tickets.

How can I enjoy the Amsterdam Light Festival 2022?

There are three main ways you can enjoy and experience the Amsterdam light festival artworks, as highlighted below. 

1. Amsterdam Light Festival Boat Cruise

One of the best ways to experience the Amsterdam light festival is by cruising the canals. Several cruising options are available for those who want to go this route. These are: 

Amsterdam Light Festival Boat Tour

The Amsterdam light festival canal cruise provides a more comfortable way of exploring the Amsterdam light festival artworks with heated and covered boats. You will also have an official audio guide that will tell you about the art, the theme, and the artists, while still allowing room for cruisers to converse with the rest of the company. The cruise is approximately 75 minutes long, and festival goers can book the cruise with several boat companies that sail from different locations. The cost ranges from €26.50 per adult ticket and €13.25 per kids’ ticket. Make sure to get your ticket for the Amsterdam Light Festival boat cruise before they run out.

Group/ Private Cruise

A private cruise can be a great option for a group of friends and family or a company event. Private cruises are provided on request by partner boat companies. You can also request that dinner be served with this option and several other options to choose from. 

Open Boat 

While the covered boat offers comfort, an open boat offers a more intimate experience with the art on display. As you cruise along the Amsterdam light festival 2022 route, you will have a skipper on the boat that will expound on the theme and the art. The cruise lasts approximately 75 minutes, with several departure points. The price of an adult’s ticket is €26.50 while that of a child (4 to 12 years) is €13.25. 

Sail by Yourself

For the adventurer that would instead like to sail the route themselves, independent Amsterdam light festival boat tours are allowed. Special maps will also be provided to make your cruise safe and fun. Those who choose this option can find the sailing rules for this festival next to the stories on artists and their Amsterdam light festival artworks. The Amsterdam light festival tickets costs €7.50 and remains active for 48 hours after you activate it. 

2. Amsterdam Light Festival Walking Tour

Another way to experience the light art is to walk the Amsterdam light festival route from the quay. You can start walking from any point you choose and gradually cover the 6.5km route. Travellers can use an Amsterdam light festival map with a live location. The different artworks are shown using an icon that provides information on the artists and their work. 

The Amsterdam light festival map is a fantastic way of supporting the festival as you walk around and freely admire their work. If you feel apprehensive about taking the tour alone, you can choose a private guide to show you around and tell you about the artworks and their themes and creators. 

The route map is on sale at the Amsterdam light festival tickets shop for €7.50 and €15.00 for a map and an audio guide. 

3. Amsterdam Light Festival Bike Tour

Apart from the Amsterdam light festival boat tour, the bike tour is a great option for those looking for an authentic Dutch experience. It is approximately one and a half hours long and guides guests along the most beautiful Amsterdam locations. The bike tour starts at 5 pm daily from A-Bike-Nieuwe Nieuwstraat 19d, Amsterdam. The guide is fluent in English and French, and the bikers are offered free tea and coffee after the tour. 

Special Projects during Amsterdam Light Festival 2022

Besides the normal tours, the Amsterdam light festival 2022 also has some exciting special projects that include: 

  • The elderly will have an exciting evening in specially organized Amsterdam light festival 2022 route cruises.
  • Involvement of the younger generation as they experience and learn the importance of light art.
  • Information team volunteers will act as an information point for visitors, sell merchandise, offer support on starting the tour throughout the Amsterdam light festival dates, and help visitors book cruises.

Tips for the Amsterdam Light Festival

Below are some tips to ensure you have the best experience at the 11th edition of the festival: 

  • Always confirm if the boats are wheelchair accessible before booking tickets if you use mobility assistance devices.
  • Find information points en route if you have any questions.
  • Find and read an overview of parking options on the website of Amsterdam city if you decide to attend by car.
  • There are several bike parking areas and bike stalls for rented bikes.
  • Visitors that do not have mobile devices can have printed route maps that are available at information points.

Book an Amsterdam Light Festival Canal Cruise

A canal cruise during the Amsterdam light festival 2022 is not an experience that you would want to miss out on. The theme for this edition of the light festival is ‘Imagine Beyond,’ which is precisely what it will inspire you to do. As you cruise past the showcased light art, your imagination will come afire, and you will go home with your eyes open from the fresh delight of the experience. Booking your next trip to Amsterdam? Get your Amsterdam Light Festival tickets today.