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    Sailing holidays in Germany

    A Guide to setting sail in Germany: Discover the best of Germany both inland and offshore

    Zizoo's Guide to Sailing in Germany

    See a different side of Germany on a yacht charter holiday with Zizoo. Explore the coastal towns along the North and Baltic Seas or take a trip to the rugged North Sea Frisian Islands to enjoy unspoilt beaches, picturesque landscapes and popular seaside resorts such as Sylt on your own private yacht.


    • The Baltic Coast
    • Frisian Islands
    • Lakes of Berlin
    • Best time to sail
    • Currency
    • Boat base locations
      Hamburg – Rostock – Wesenberg – Berlin
    • Languages spoken
      German, English
    • Closest airports
      Hamburg (HAM), Berlin Schönefeld Airport (SXF)
    • Tips
      Danish Islands, Vadehavet National Park, The River Havel
    Ready to set sail?

    Contact one of our holiday planners or make a request directly below.

    +44 20 3318 3641
    Mon-Sun: 9-9pm CET | Sat-Sun: 11-7pm CET
    Sailing in Germany

    Summer is the perfect time to enjoy the beauty of Germany’s coastal landscapes that stretch across reach the northern coast of the Netherlands and up to Denmark. As part of the Schengen area, no special visas are required for travellers from the EU and several other countries, though it’s best to check with your embassy before making travel plans. As part of the EU, Germany’s currency is the Euro.

    Fly into Hamburg and you’ll be right on the banks of the River Elbe, a major port of entry into the country that leads up to the North Sea. Alternatively, you'll also be near the Baltic Sea in the north-east. It’s just a 30-minute drive from the airport in the north of the city to the central port. Main harbours in the north include Cuxhaven, Borkum and Rostock, on the Baltic Coast. Berlin also makes for a lovely holiday. Fly to Berlin and take in the sites of the city before heading out to the lakes that border the bustling capital.

    Sailboats in Germany

    View all sailboats in Germany
    typical chairs for lounging on a beach in the Baltic
    Beach on the Baltic Sea

    Hamburg, whose sea-faring history dates back to medieval times, is the second busiest European marina. The International Maritime Museum is not to be missed. The water front areas come to life in the summer and beach clubs such as the classy Hamburg Del Mar are great places to spend the evening on land. From Hamburg, you can sail along the Frisian Islands that stretch across the coast or head up towards Denmark and its island chain to the north-east. Alternatively, the Baltic Sea to the east of the Germany-Denmark border offers another option with particularly calm waters.

    If planning a boat trip to the Frisian Islands, you may want to sail to the charming island of Sylt, a favoured destination in northern Germany. On other islands, such as Helgoland, you can experience nature away from the crowds.

    Another popular sailing destination in Germany is Borkum, which is also a top place for scuba diving. Also be sure to visit the outdoor Musikpavilion for live music performances by the sea in the summer. Another charming attractions is the Kleinbahn, a charming mini train that takes visitors on a tour through the town and passes along the beach.

    Knurrhahn and Alt Borkum are two restaurants in Borkum that offer a fine selection of German seafood and specialties such as pickled herring and fresh shrimps on a roll. Bars include Café Matrix right on the beach and Lord Nelson, both with outdoor seating. The beach of Borkum is particularly popular, and temperatures here regularly hit the high 20s to 30s in August. Hop over to Norderney, another lovely island if you are looking for more fine sand beaches to take in the sun.

    Hamburg canal in the evening light
    Evening in Hamburg
    sunset on the coast of Usedom, Germany

    Go on a sailing holiday in Hamburg and head north via Cuxhaven to the German Bight in the North Sea, a popular spot for sailing in Germany. Spend your sailing holiday in Germany island hopping in the North and Wadden Seas as you explore the islands along the German Frisian archipelago, which spans from Denmark in the north down to the coast of the Netherlands. Take a break in Ameland, an island of the Netherlands, with its gorgeous sand dunes and quaint villages, including scenic Nes.

    If you are looking for a tranquil retreat, consider cruising the inland waterways of the Mecklenburg Lake District, by the gorgeous Müritz National Park, or along to 325km River Havel just west of Berlin.

    Experience the diverse urban and natural landscapes at your own pace when you go on a sailing holiday in Germany. The country's varied coastlines and inland waterways, provide a wide range of sailing experiences. If planning to sail on the northwestern coast of mainland Germany or the Frisian Islands, you'll find ports in Hamburg, Bremerhaven, Norddeich and Wilhemshaven. Cuxhaven also offers a seaside resort and is famous for having been the site of German rocket experiments in the mid-20th century. 

    You may also want to extend your sailing holiday in Germany to explore more of our favourite destinations for sailing in northern Europe

    sailboats on the Baltic Sea
    Sailboats on the Baltic Sea
    sailboat on a lake in Germany
    Set sail on Germany's lakes

    Sailing holidays in the German Bight require a bit more navigational skills than sailing destinations in southern Europe, but are highly rewarding. Germany’s unique scenery and unspoilt natural, cultural and historic settings are best enjoyed by boat. Depths can be shallow along the coasts of the island chain, but the major points of interest have ports with mooring buoys which makes anchoring simple. Waves reaching a maximum of 1.5 metres and winds of up to 20 knots are common at this time, but are often lower. Air temperatures in the high 20s and water temperatures up to about 18°C in high summer are normal.

    The country's varied coastlines and inland waterways, provide a wide range of sailing experiences.

    Waters are generally calmer in summer, but still somewhat rough and busy with commercial traffic. Be wary around the Osterams to the east of Borkum, where waters can be particularly shallow and with strong west to north-westerly winds that can impact sailing. If you are not an experienced sailor, you can book a skippered sailing holiday in Germany with Zizoo. The Baltic Sea, however, is renowned for being particularly calm with mild temperatures in summer.

    Wondering whether you need a skipper during your sailing holiday in Germany? Check here to find out.

    sailboats offshore from Rugen island, Germany
    Sail to Rugen Island

    Motorboats in Germany

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