Amsterdam – The charming city of Netherlands

Amsterdam is one of the best destinations to visit in Europe for entertainment, party, and history and lot more things to do.

amsterdam1

General Information

Amsterdam is the capital city of Netherlands or “Holland” with the gorgeous canals, historic buildings, museums, and activity center. Netherlands is famous for its culture, tolerance, freedom and progressive attitude for the tourist. Amsterdam is a place for party seeker with amazing coffee shops, pubs, nightclubs etc.

Time Zone UTC +1

Currency: Euro

Day Passes

  • I Amsterdam Card
  • Amsterdam Canal Boat Pass

Shopping

Most of the shops are open from 9 A.M to 5 P.M on weekdays and super markets are open until 10 PM.

  • Northern Market, Amsterdam

Tax Refunds

The VAT refund is a good way to shop around with a tax refund if you are in the country as a tourist. The VAT is 19% in Netherlands which means you get a discount of 19% you are a Non-EU citizen.

Language

Netherlands is a Dutch speaking country but most of the people can communicate in English. However, German, French are the other languages which are widely spoken. However, learning a new language is always a good idea with knowledge of basic greetings, phrases.

 

Itinerary

Legality & Safety

Amsterdam has a certain age limit to drink and use coffee shops. The drinking age is restricted to 16 and 18 to other things. Coffee shops have a restriction of 5 grams of marijuana per person.

Netherlands is a safe country to travel and walk around but you must be cautious about the pick pockets and common street crimes. And use common sense for all the tourist places as it is prone to street crimes.

Restaurants/Foods

  • Arendsnest

Arendsnest is one of the good places to try out local draught beers. They serve almost 50 varieties of Dutch draught beers. The bar has a personalized beer tasting room with the availability of various craft beers. Usually, the tasting beers are served in a small 12cl beer tasting glass.

Note: Use water in between every beer tasting to neutralize the taste.

  • Foodhallen

Foodhallen is the best place to try different foods on a single roof. It is kind of a food stall market that shares a history of a building that was a service center for cities trams. It is one of the best places to try out various kinds of foods, smoothies, and drinks.

  • Pan Cakes Amsterdam

Try various Dutch pancakes with an experimental menu of various international and Dutch ingredients.

  • Reypanaer Cheese Tasting room

Learn various flavor and aroma of cheese in the Reypanaer cheese tasting room. Try some alcohol and cheese in this place.

  • Brix Food n Drink

Try Brix Food ‘n’ Drinx bar and restaurant with perfect lunch and great ambiance with jazz music. The quality of the food is great with a good socially active place.

  • MiniBar

The minibar is one of the unique kind of bar with self-servicing with chic interior and ambiance. The concept is simple, where you get your own fridge to get your drinks and a credit or ID card is left on the front desk to serve as authenticity.

  • Prael Brewery

Prael Brewery is one of the beer tastings centers where you can try fresh and local beers.

  • Burger Bar

If you want to try a burger, this is one of the best places for having fast food with drinks.

  • Heineken Exhibition

The world famous Heineken beer is produced in Netherlands. You can try Heineken beer directly from one of the breweries.  It is opened to all to try some beers and experience the Dutch culture of beer tasting.

  • House of Bols

It is one of the unique concepts of liqueurs shots where you experience to try different flavors of bols (liqueur shots)

  • Blue Pepper Restaurant and Candle Light Cruises

 

NOTE: Tipping

The restaurant bills are included with service charges but people usually tip with 5% to 10% in bars or pubs. Tips can be given in both cash and credit card.

Recommended Places to Stay

 

Amsterdam's Cheap Hotels

Hotel Stars Discount Price per night, from Choose dates

Hotel JL No76

★★★★

-23%

171131

View Hotel

Hotel De Hallen

★★★★

-31%

189131

View Hotel

Room Mate Aitana

★★★★

-17%

360300

View Hotel

Inntel Hotels Amsterdam Zaandam

★★★★

-23%

143110

View Hotel

Hotel Roemer Amsterdam

★★★★

-33%

191129

View Hotel

Transportation

Public Transportation

The Netherlands as a country has an organized public network of train, tram, and buses. The city of Amsterdam has wide coverage of public transportation. It is suggested to buy a smart card (“OV Card”) to access the city public transportation. In addition, it is suggested to buy Unlimited travel card if you are planning to visit the city for short period of time. Metro and trams are good option to travel for long and short distances. Trains are good for traveling to another city. The ferry is another option to see the canal city in a different perception. The transportation operating hours are from 6 AM to 00:30 AM. Further, there are night buses with additional fares. Use 9292.nl for more information on public transportation.

Bicycle

The bicycle is the best can cheap option to travel around the canal city of Amsterdam. You can hire bicycles from various points in the city. You can check some of the websites like a rental bike.NL, icycleholland.com etc. Netherland has some of the best bicycle infrastructures in the World, so it is very easy to follow the traffic and signals for the bicycle. It costs around 10 euro to rent a bike for the entire day.

Walkability

Walking around the medieval center is a mesmerizing feeling of the culture and history. It is safe to walk around the city but as similar to any big city, it is preferred to be careful as a tourist and take care of the belongings.

Driving

Netherlands has a driving on the right side with various speed limits between 50km/h to 120 km/h on highways. It is recommended to always wear a seat belt while driving or on the back seat. In our opinion, it is not recommended to hire a car for roaming around the city as the city is not car friendly and has blocked access on the interior roads or the city center.

Taxi

Taxi is not a popular transportation option in Amsterdam and it is thought to be a scam. However, you can find tuk-tuk transportation as a better option compared to taxis.

Festival and Events

  • King’s Day (27th April)

It is one of the biggest and colorful festivals of the Netherlands. The streets are full of people on this day with a lot of DJ play parties on public squares. The boats are filled with live music and cafés are open to serve people.

  • Queen’s Day (30th of April)

Queen’s day is celebrated right after King’s day on 30th of April where people are on streets with orange in color.

Places to See / Things to Do

General

centraalstation

  • Westerkerk Church

It is one of the reformed churches in the Central Amsterdam with a Westerkerk tower built in 1638. Westerkerk church provides a memory of various artists like Willy Alberti (Single), Rembrandt (Painter) were buried in the church. The church provides a modest interior and rich history of Netherlands whereas the tower provides a unique view of the city of Amsterdam.

  • Vondel Park

Vondel park is one of the largest parks in Amsterdam. It is a great experience to walk around the park and enjoy the open air theatre, nature, sculpture, and vicinity of the park.

  • Red Light District Amsterdam

Netherlands have a very open culture to drugs and sex. The red light district is situated near the Central Station of Amsterdam on an easily walkable distance. The district has many attractions for young people. The district has many sex shows, sex shops, and museums etc.

  • I Amsterdam sign

iamsterdam

I Amsterdam sign is a picturesque place near the Rijksmuseum. It is situated centrally in a large open space and a logo for the city of Amsterdam promotion strategy. This place is famous for taking pictures along the large blocks of “I Amsterdam” letters.

Historic

  • Anne Frank House

Anne Frank Huis is a biographical museum dedicated to the Jewish diarist Anne Frank. It is famous for World War II hidden room of Anne Frank where she wrote a wartime diary.

  • Dam Square

Dam square is a historically rich square situated near the Centraal Station within a 5-minute walk. Dam square was created to widen the city square by building up a dam around the Amstel River. The square was renowned for hippies to relax and hang out. The Dam square is surrounded by various food stalls, plaza, restaurants, cafes, and bars. It is a very popular place for the tourist so usually, you have to wait for a seat in cafes.

  • Begijnhof

Begijnhof is one of the historical sites for a surviving house built around 1420. The house, walls, gardens are still overlooked by a single lady.

Adventure

  • Kayaking in canals of Amsterdam

Kajakadoo Kayak Tours provide a guided kayak tour around the canals of the city of Amsterdam. You can contact them at +310611427752, info@kajakadoo.nl

Museum (Must See)

  • Rijksmuseum

Rijksmuseum is one of the famous museums of Amsterdam to showcase art and history. The museum has 800 different objects of art and history. It has some masterpieces by the famous painter ”Rembrandt”, Frans Hals and Johannes Vermeer.

  • Science Center NEMO

It is a science museum showcasing the latest scientific technologies.

  • Electric Lady Land

Electric Lad Land is a fluorescent stone museum which showcases the art with fluorescence. The place is dark with shining colorful objects. Price: 5 Euro

  • Van Gogh Museum

Van Gogh museum is an art museum dedicated to Vincent Van Gogh opened in 1973. The museum showcase the works of Vincent Van Gogh dated back in 1800’s of the famous paintings like “The Yellow House”, “The potato eaters” etc. Price: 15 Euro

  • Madame Tussauds Wax Museum

It is one of the famous wax museums of various personalities including the royal family, world leaders, Hollywood, music industry, science, and superheroes. Price: 21 Euro

  • The Hash, Marihuana and Hemp Museum

This museum is must for the marijuana lovers, situated near the canals of red light district. It showcases the first uses of the marijuana plant for recreational. Price: 9 Euro

  • The Dutch Resistance Museum

The museum showcase the resistance of Netherlands during the World War II. Price: 8 Euro

Other Museums to explore

  • The National Maritime Museum
  • Museum of Bags and Purses
  • Amsterdam Cheese Museum
  • Jewish Historical Museum
  • Museum of Prostitution – Red Light District
  • Sex Museum Amsterdam, Venustempel
  • Museum of Photography

Nearby Places to Visit

  • Volendam

Volendam is nice for one day trip outside the city of Amsterdam. It is popular for the beach, traditional Dutch clothing. One can take beautiful photographs with traditional Dutch clothes inside the traditional Dutch house. It is 20 km north of Amsterdam with lively shopping and residential streets. Bus number 110 and 316 can take you directly to Volendam from the Amsterdam Centraal Station.

  • Muiden

Muiden is also a harbor town situated 135 km from Amsterdam. The fortified town caters peaceful streets, small cafes and a harbor. The main attraction of Muiden is the Castle Muiderslot of King Arthur.

  • Zaanse Schans

Zaane Schans is a historic site with 17th-century windmills and traditional industrial area.

  • Bloemendaal

Bloemendaal is a hippie hangout place with a lot of beach parties during summer time.

 

 

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