My husband and I travelled to Dusseldorf, Germany for a mini break on the weekend to visit boot Dusseldorf – one of the biggest boat shows in the world.
We arrived at Düsseldorf Messe before eleven as the car parks were filling up quickly. I have never seen such huge parking areas in my life! There are five different areas but it seemed that P1 and P2 were geared at folks like us. As you can imagine, the the distance to the actual fair site is long from these car parks. Because of this, there were shuttle buses going back and forth non-stop transporting visitors. You can also catch a bus to and from the city center or airport from the Messe.
After we paid for parking (there are parking attendants going round the area), we received a small map indicating which car park and which row we had left our car. Extremely handy because if you forget where you left your car it will take you hours to go through the parking lots and all the different rows to find it.
It is advisable to buy your tickets beforehand from the fair’s internet site. If we hadn’t done so, I have no idea where we would’ve got our tickets as I didn’t see anyone selling them. There is a cloakroom for a small fee if you have bulky belongings or big coats with you. Don’t throw your ticket away because you will have to scan it again when you exit.
You could find all kinds of unique things on show like this watercraft below. Is it a boat or a lounge chair? I think it’s something in between – a more relaxing way to enjoy calm seas than a paddle boat.
American Chris Craft boats are very pleasing to the eye.
There is just something so cool about the vintage feel of these boats. You can just imagine John F. Kennedy and Jackie in her sunglasses lounging away on the sea in one of these.
Finnish boats were well represented and what I liked was that they were promoting their home country with Finnish flags. Way to go Finland!
The Finnish brands on show were XO, Sargo, Targa, Grandezza, Yamarin, Aquador, Flipper, North Star Patrol, Buster and Axopar. Wow, we sure have many motorboat manufacturers.
Axopar made a debut at the show with the Axopar 37. Their 28 won the European Powerboat of the Year 2016 in the category up to 35 feet.
The Swedish Nimbus 305 Coupé E-power attracted a lot of attention. And no wonder, it is gorgeous, has all the amenities needed and is powered by electricity.
If all this wasn’t luxurious enough, there was a huge hall for large luxury yachts. Princess boats had the biggest boat at the whole fair – the Princess 30M superyacht. Unfortunately it’s impossible to understand how huge it really was from this photo below. You needed to have an invitation to board. This particular boat “Kohuba” is available for chartering if you are willing to fork up 75 000 euros per week.
Walking around and looking at all these boats for hours made us hungry. There was a special section outside that sold German specialities for reasonable prices. How refreshing to find that not all food at fairs are hard on your wallet.
It was quite windy, but there was an inside section (not heated) where you could escape the wind. We opted for the currywurst from Dauser’s Bratwurst and it tasted great.
My husband wanted to look at sailing boats too. What was interesting at boot was that sailing is the most popular feature at this particular fair and there were many different halls concentrating on just that. Jeanneau, Bénéteau, Bavaria and Hanse had huge stands. In Finland sailing is very popular but at Helsinki’s boat fair there is only a very small section reserved for sailing boats. So for Finnish sailing enthusiasts, boot is definitely something to consider visiting next time.
Messe is so big that it’s impossible to cover it all in one day. There were 17 event halls altogether. In addition to boats, you could find halls for diving, fishing, accessories, equipment, water tourism, trend sports (like wakeboarding, surfing, kiteboarding) and even maritime art.
We walked over ten kilometres in just a few hours.
It seems that even motors need a little rest from all the action at boot.
If you missed this happening, you can always go next year as boot Düsseldorf will be held from the 21st to the 29th January 2017.
In the meantime, you can visit the biggest boat fair in Northern Europe in February right here in Finland. The Helsinki International Boat Show Vene 16 Båt will be held from the 12th to the 21st February 2016 at the Messukeskus in Helsinki.
Did you have a chance to visit boot Dusseldorf? Are you planning on visiting Vene 16 Båt in Helsinki?