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Thuishaven - The Mini-Festival by the Bay


Rave Port

The fourth busiest seaport in Europe may seem like the ultimate location for a techno rave and that is exactly what the venue of Thuishaven is! Nestled between the cranes and oil tankers of the port of Amsterdam, Thuishaven is like a cross between a nightclub and a trailer park. It’s a cozy little weekend festival for people who prefer to stay away from the enormous, commercial electro-music festivals. They keep it gypsy at Thuishaven. It’s all love and music at an affordable price when you get to Thuishaventerrein in Sloterdijk.

“It’s friendly, cheap, with good weather, it works!” proclaims organizer and spokesperson Kasper Jorissen. “As long as things go well, we’ll keep doing it.”

What is now Thuishaven actually started as two organizations called Koekoek and Lazy Sundays. Similar minds from both groups joined forces to develop something that was missing from the festival scene. They created a cost-effective, weekly festival without bloated lineups and bad weather. You don’t have to buy Thuishaven tickets weeks in advance. You can buy them at the last minute, which gives you enough time to make sure bad weather won’t spoil the party. 


An Electro-Fantasy World.

Partying here, in any season, is a unique experience. You’ll find several stages, bars, and eccentricities decorating the venue. Scrapyard relics that are native to the industrial environment adorn the area, creating a friendly post-apocalyptic vibe.

There are often jugglers and firebreathers frolicking around! Floating jellyfish, balloon creations, clowns, face painters, and an enormous pinwheel-colored circus tent makes the party feel like a surreal carnival. You might even be surprised by a “wizard” performing complicated magic tricks as you sip on your drink and listen to the DJ.

Techno heavyweights like Sven Väth, Carl Cox, and Amelie Lens have rocked the stage at Thuishaven. But the lineup is usually not the draw of this venue. 

“People also come to us more for the experience and not specifically for one artist.” admits co-organizer of Thuishaven, Jordi van der Heij. “We have proven several times that we can also sell out without communicating the lineup.”


Lazy Sundays all Weekend Long

The real appeal of this fairground for adults is the chill, laid-back atmosphere that is an escape from the chaos of life during the week. What was usually an every Sunday thing has grown big enough to be a weekend-long party now. The maximum capacity of 750 people creates a sense of intimacy and familiarity. Food truck-styled food is everywhere as you walk around barefoot, enjoying the show. Fights are practically non-existent at Thuishaven, and even the bouncers are friendly! 

During the winter season, starting from October to April, you can party inside heated tents and an awesome new hangar for a more traditional club experience. But when the warmer season rolls around in May, the party turns alfresco again. You can gather around the open-air stage and wander the grounds while still having access to the indoor tent and hangar. It's like the best of both worlds! 

The place has hosted over 200 festivals, and the experiences just keep getting bigger. But not necessarily bigger in attendance or extravagance. That seems like it would go against the neo-hippie mentality of the founders of Thuishaven. Thuishaven will continue to be a popular alternative to the club and festival scene as it remains small, fun, and peaceful. And it's all here on the western outskirts of Amsterdam.


Author: Techno 24/7

Pic: amsterdam-dance-event.nl

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