Do you like cold water? On the first day of the year, you can, together with thousands of Dutch people, take a New Year’s Dive into the North Sea. At the New Year’s Dive, we take a dip into the sea to celebrate the beginning of the new year. Participants typically dress in costumes or festive attire for this chilly tradition.
Everywhere in Holland, there are New Year’s Dives organized. Most of them are on the beaches of the North Sea and the Wadden Sea but also by towns or villages near lakes, rivers, or canals are New Year’s Dive’s organized. It’s great fun, and a big challenge to start the New Year! So as we say put on your naughty shoes and dive in together with all these brave Dutch people.
➔ Before you take a New years dive it is best to eat an Oliebol first
The New Year’s Dive, or “Nieuwjaarsduik” in Dutch, is a spectacular tradition in the Netherlands where thousands of people gather on January 1st to plunge into the cold waters of the North Sea or other designated locations. This annual event is organized by various local initiatives and the most famous one takes place in Scheveningen, near The Hague.
Countdown to New Year’s Dive
Starts January 1, 2024, 12.00 PM at Scheveningen Beach
Dive, Swim or participate at the New Year’s Dive
Participants, often dressed in quirky costumes or sometimes just their swimsuits, brave the chilly temperatures to welcome the New Year with a refreshing dip. The event has grown in popularity over the years, attracting both locals and tourists looking for a unique and invigorating way to kick off the year.
The atmosphere is festive, with many participants and onlookers enjoying the camaraderie and cheering on the brave swimmers. It has become a symbol of renewal and a lighthearted way to start the year with a sense of adventure and community spirit. The New Year’s Dive is not only a Dutch tradition but has also inspired similar events in other parts of the world.
Traditional New Year’s Dive
Since 1959 the traditional New Year’s Dive started with only 28 people on the beach of Zandvoort. Nowadays thousands of people gather together by the seaside on New Year’s Day. Nearly 45.000 people take a cold water dive on the 1st day of the year. They are all shivering from the cold, waiting together on the beach for the starting signal to go. After the starting signal is given they all run together into the very cold North Sea water and back again. It’s a very jolly and happy event. Afterward, everybody is very proud that they had the guts to take the New Year’s Dive. In wintertime, the water of the North Sea is extremely cold.
Since the beginning of the traditional New Year’s Dive, it only happened once that it didn’t go through because of the extremely cold weather.
And if you don’t want to make a New Year’s Dive? Be part of the crowd that is looking. Just looking is a lot of fun.
Sign up for the next New Year’s dive: New Years Dive – Den Haag – Scheveningen
New Year’s Dive locations
Places where you must be for a New Year’s Dive on the first day of the year!
At Nieuwjaarduik you find more information about locations, dates, and times of all New Year’s Dives in the Netherlands. Don’t forget, for most New Year’s Dives you have to register.
Beware of the water temperature
The New Year’s Dive isn’t for the faint of heart. With the sea temperature hovering around 5 degrees Celsius on New Year’s Day, taking the plunge is a bold and invigorating way to start the year. Swimming in cold water is not only refreshing but also beneficial for your health. Just be sure to have a plan to warm up quickly afterward. One thing is certain – that cup of hot chocolate (or pea soup) tastes extra delightful after such an invigorating challenge.”
|North Sea Beaches:
Wijk aan Zee
➔ Egmond aan Zee
Bergen aan Zee
|Wadden Sea Islands:
Starting times New Year’s Dive
All the New Year’s Dive starts around 12.00 / 14.00, so be on time, you don’t want to miss this.
1-1-2024 | As far as we know by now, there are 157 New Year’s Dive in the Netherlands
➔ Check all the New Year’s Dive in the Netherlands – NieuwJaars duiken
Nudist New Year’s Dive
For nudist. There are three nudist New Year’s Dives. You can find one of them at the beach by Zandvoort. The other two are in the country, one of them in Twiske at Oostzaan and the other in Leeuwarden in the province of Frysian.
➔ Overview Nudist New Year’s Dive
New Year’s Dive in January
There is also a New Year’s Dive organized on some other days in January, mostly on Sundays associated with another event. Utrecht, on the 2nd Sunday in January there is a so-called Culture Sunday with a New Year’s Dive.
This event has been adopted by Unox, this is a food factory for soups and sausages. If you sign in by Unox you pay 3 Euros and you’ll get a goody bag with an Unox cap and after the dive a cup of soup. This soup is a traditional Dutch soup called Erwtensoup made of peas, leeks, and beef. The money made by this event goes to a charity cause.
Often there are local charity causes where people can join in.
Corona Covid – No New Years Dive in 2020, 2021 and 2022
In 2020, 2021, and 2022 there were no New Year’s dives due to the Corona crisis.
Organized New Year’s dives could not take place due to the coronavirus measures. Even though it was strongly discouraged, many people went into the water on their own. On the beach of Scheveningen, it was quite busy with people who ventured a New Year’s dive, and in other places, people also went into the water.
During Covid, the government advised that the New Year’s dive was canceled with the request not to go to the beach because there would be no lifeguards present.
As a consolation and to create a form of New Year’s dip at home, you could order a can of seawater, a can of pea soup, and 2 Unox hats for free.
2023 | Hopefully, Corona will be in 2023 a thing of the past.
Will you join us on January 1st for the New Year’s Dive? Dive into the new year with your friends and family!
2024 | New Year’s Dive – We can’t wait to have a nice cold dive at the first of January 2024