The best way of slow travel: boat rental in Europe without a license

If you are a viewer of my Instagram stories you know that a little bit of time back I was the captain of a boat for a couple of days. I don’t have a license/permit to be one, but still, this was not a problem when renting a boat from Nicols.

My personal story with boat rental Nicols

In the Netherlands, I had a boat for two nights. Together with my buddy Bart and two other bloggers, we headed course for the mysterious Biesbosch. A nature reserve in the center of the Netherlands.

In the marina of Kerkdriel, the kind people of Boating Nicols gave us the total controls over one of their boats. Of course, they explained all about the boat first. How to control it, how to behave ‘on the road’, and how to enjoy your holiday the most.

We left for the beautiful little town of Heusden for the first night, then to the Biesbosch museum where we did some walking in nature too. Via Vissershang/Hank back to Kerkdriel. Two nights of relaxation and nature-watching.

More about renting a boat without a license (in Europe)

In a couple of countries in Europe, the need for a permit is only for commercial boating and larger boats. As soon as your boat is longer than 15 meters or you go over 12 kilometers an hour, you need a permit.

For that reason, all the boats from Nicols go a maximum of 12 kilometers per hour and are less than 13,5 meters long.

Though, a boat of 13,5 meters is still a lot of fun! With room for 8 people, that’s plenty of space. In a boat that long you get 4 bedrooms, each with their own bathroom (shower and toilet), a kitchen with an oven and stove, a deck and an upper deck with barbecue.

Choose your own adventure river cruise

With a rental boat, you can totally do your own thing. You choose your own routes, when you are leaving, and when you are stopping. Naturally, there are a couple of routes the kind people of Nicols can recommend you.

They have ports in France, Germany, Portugal, and The Netherlands. So get exploring by water

They do everything for you in regards to making the boat ready for your adventure. You just have to book the boat you want. And pack your Captain’s hat!

Disclaimer: The trip inspiring this post was organized and funded by Glenaki for Nicols.

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