Skûtsjes are typical Frisian ships that were originally used as cargo ships by Frisian farmers. Once a year sailing championships are organized in which skippers of these historic ships fight for the honor of becoming the skûtsjesilen champion.
- Picture yourself in the past and come see the skûtsje sailboats.
- Spectacular competitions on the Frisian lakes.
- The atmosphere in the Frisian villages is wonderful during and after the races.
The History of Skûtsjesilen
Skûtsjes have a long and flat structure with which they could reach Frisian farms through shallow water. Sometimes farmers used them in sailing matches to earn some money. Due to new rules decreed by the water sport associations and the arrival of motorboats, interest in the skûtsjes declined. It wasn’t until after World War II that some skûtsjes fans started promoting skûtsjesilen again and turned it into the sailing event that it is today.
The skûtsjesilen championship takes place in August and offer you a great opportunity to combine water sports with Frisian heritage and fun. The sailing competitions are held in the course of two weeks and start in several villages in Friesland. This way, you can see the historic skûtsjes take to the water in different places. There is a pleasant bustle in the villages during and after the races.