Water activities | VisitNordjylland
Water activities pictures

Water activities

Northern Jutland is surrounded by water and wherever you holiday in Northern Jutland you are never far from the wet stuff. There are a range of holiday activities that can be enjoyed at sea, the most popular of which, at any rate in the summer months, is bathing in the breakers and soaking up the sun on the beautiful sandy beaches, which run as far as the eye can see down the entirety of the western coast of North Jutland. The western coast of North Jutland with its flat and child friendly beaches is a popular destination for families.

Angling / fishing

An angling holiday in Northern Jutland encompasses all types of fishing. Seas, fjords, lakes, rivers, salt and fresh water are all within reach and the sum of Danish fish species are only a cast away.

Along both the east and west coast fishing cutters transport expectant anglers out to sea almost daily - search cutters can be found in many Danish harbors - and North Sea cod fishing is amongst the best to be had anywhere in the world. Just remember to get a permit.

The most famous fishing ground is probably The Yellow Reef, which can be reached from Hanstholm and Hirtshals. Coastal and jetty fishing has a charm of its own. There are good chances of catching cod, sea trout, mackerel and flatfish all the way up the west coast of Jutland, as there are in the fjords, inlets and creeks of East Jutland.

In winter, sizeable cods can be landed directly on the beaches, while flatfish are best caught in spring and autumn – without forgetting the early-summer garfish and late-summer mackerel. The mackerel in particular can provide world-class fishing thrills after spending a few balmy days in August hunting down schools of panic-stricken sprats in between the groynes!

Sea trout and garfish are plentiful in the Limfjord fjord, and the beautiful lakes of Northern Jutland are some of the best places to catch sea trout in Denmark. They also have plentiful stocks of brown trout, and thus it comes as no surprise that the lakes of Northern Jutland are the fishing ground of preference for many Danish and international anglers.

There are a number of put & take lakes in Northern Jutland with entertaining and attractive fishing as well as top-notch facilities, clean water and healthy fish. The whole family can enjoy a day out here, and fishing the lakes represents a challenge that even the most finicky angler can't turn down.

Denmark - and North Jutland - is quite unique when it comes to angling. Admittedly, there are countries with bigger and more plentiful fish, but no other country can boast such a wide variety of species within a geographical area as small as that of Denmark. Here the rivers, lakes, coast and open sea are all within convenient reach. And the Danish government has gone great lengths to protect the pure waters.

Remember that there is a limit to how small a fish you are allowed to catch and when you are allowed to catch it. All regulations on close seasons, minimum size limits, and preservation zones within the waters are found in the Fishing Act. Just ask your local tourist office about the rules.

See all angling waters in North Jutland here

Sailing

North Jutland is at its most beautiful when seen from the water, and water, whether it be fjord or sea, is never far away. Northern Jutland has many harbors. A quick look at the sea chart is sufficient to show that there is always a harbor close by, and that they are to be found in all shapes and sizes.

There are small idyllic harbors each with their own distinctive atmosphere. You don’t need to have your own boat to experience Northern Jutland from the sea. Whether you are interested in a trip lasting for a couple of hours or a week-long voyage there are plenty of options. You can go on a trip in an old-fashioned steam ship or motor launch, or you can spend a few hours on a 100 year-old sailing ship.

See boat rentals in North Jutland here

Windsurfing

An average annual wind speed of 9m/s makes the western side of North Jutland the windiest place in Western Europe: the perfect conditions for windsurfers.

The coasts of Northern Jutland are so varied and changing that everyone can find a spot suited to their temperament and abilities. There’s room both for surf freaks looking for somewhere they can romp with other surfers, and the family looking for a calm bay where they won’t be disturbed. The city of Klitmøller in Thy is also known as "Cold Hawaii", and is a Danish surfer's paradise.

Diving

You don’t have to enjoy the water from above of course, the seas surrounding Northern Jutland can be accessed from below. Diving, or diving instruction, is another way of getting to grips with the wet stuff. In the cities of Aalborg, Løkken and Frederikshavn you will find diver associations.

Canoeing and kayaking

The chance to chill out and go with the flow is the main aim of any active relaxation holiday. There is not a more intense way to explore the natural world than from the water. The areas you navigate through are often reservations, where the silence is total and you will be able to watch the abundant wildlife at close range.

Canoeing is regulated in Denmark because of environmental concern. It has become a very popular holiday activity and it has, therefore, been necessary to regulate it in various ways and places where flora and fauna are vulnerable to erosion and disturbance. Waterways legislation allows county councils to limit the amount of navigation by non-motorised craft on some stretches of water. Most Danish rivers/waterways are equipped with some form of navigational restriction, either a full ban on navigation in some areas, restricted periods of navigation (typically from dawn to dusk and from 15 June until 30 September or 15 November) or a limited number of boats for hire. Most restrictions are enforced through rules that limit and set the terms for the commercial rental of canoes.

If you wish to hire a canoe, you will always find information on the rules applying. When canoeing, visitors should be aware that simply putting your canoe in the water is not permitted. On some waterways or stretches of waterway, you need a visitor's permit, which can usually be obtained from the county council. Apply for the permit in advance as only a limited number of permits are issued for each waterway. Another problem when bringing your own canoe, is finding a place to launch it without trespassing on private property. We recommend that you ask at the local tourist information centre if you wish to put your own canoe or boat in the water.

The rules that apply when canoeing vary from waterway to waterway, but the following rules apply in most places:

  1. Use only waterways that are at least 1.5 m wide and at least 0.50 m deep 
  2. Travel with the current 
  3. Do not navigate up narrow tributaries
  4. Never navigate before 8 am or after 6 pm
  5. Never venture into reed beds 
  6. Do not run the prow into riverbanks 
  7. Assume that you are generally not permitted to go ashore

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