Johan Huibers has put anyone with an arts and crafts passion to shame. His crazy creation might be the most impressive ship ever.
Anything has the power to inspire. For Johan Huibers, the story of Noah’s Ark took him over completely.
This Dutch man became a father in the early 90s. Like all parents, he’d read his children bedtime stories. One of their favorite stories was based on Biblical tale of the great flood.
Through reading this story every night, Johan hatched an insane idea: What if I could build an ark!?
In 1993, Johan decided to turn his idea into a reality. In his spare time, he would build a boat so immense it could fit two of every animal!
Over the next 13 years, Johan would spend any second he had crafting, carving and perfecting a gigantic vessel.
Finally, in 2006, the 21st-century ark was born.
But Johan was still not happy. Though he’d spent all this time building an insane ship that could house creatures from across the world, it wasn’t up to scratch. Johan realized that his ship was just half of the size of Noah’s.
Clearly, he still had a lot of work to do. But it was more than one man could manage.
Inspired by what Johan had crafted to date, a team of amateur carpenters joined him. They decided to start work on the next phase of the ship. And this time it would become something that truly rivaled the ark that Noah had built.
Even with this team, the boat’s construction took more and more years.
Eventually, in 2012, the boat was finished, and it opened for the public.
Johan has stated that he’s sunk a lot of money as well as time on his project. In fact, he estimates the total cost to be almost $1.6 million.
Even with the immense time and money that went into Johan’s ark, it isn’t perfect. Johan and his team are amateur enthusiasts, after all. Any member of the public who visits the ark will be able to find architectural quirks and even complete errors onboard.
Johan himself has admitted it.
Regarding the boat’s construction, Johan said “We’re not professional boatmakers. A lot of stuff here is a bit crooked.”
Still, the overall ark is amazing to look at and walk through. It’s been filled with details, such as model animals, to make people think that an actual world ending flood is right around the corner.
And in many ways, Johan’s ark is very much in line with what Noah’s ark would actually have been like. He followed the exact specifications laid out in the bible. And let’s face it, if you’re desperately crafting a giant boat to escape a flood, then you’re bound to have a few incorrectly assembled bits here and there.
It is apparently seaworthy.
Even though it’s filled with mistakes and followed an incredibly outdated manual (the Bible), it floats.
Johan plans to sail it to places, but safety concerns have currently got the better of this plan.
But these concerns are about the destinations, not the boat. For instance, Johan was planning on sailing to Israel. But wildfires have put a hold on that plan for now.
And there’s one other small thing stopping this ship from sailing…
It has no engine, sails or any other means of being steered.
If it were untethered from land, it would just sail about aimlessly. Dang.
The current plan is to get a bunch of tugboats to steer the ship to its destinations. Some of the other planned destinations for the boat include Rio De Janeiro, Havana, San Diego, Long Beach, San Francisco, Seattle and more.
But suppose you can’t wait for Johan’s Ark to visit your city. Do you want to go see this amazing space in its home town in Holland?
Well, there’s a problem.
People can’t technically visit this floating phenomenon. It was open to visitors at one point, but Johan had a biblical argument with his town’s officials.
Sadly, until Johan clears up his paperwork, you can look at the outside, but going inside Johan’s Ark is not possible.
Watch and learn more in the video below.
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Source: Ark of Noah Foundation