Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Top Things To Do In Amsterdam




Amsterdam with it's historic architecture, beautiful canals and laid back culture is one of the most famous cities in Europe. Being only a short flight from the UK, and with some world class museums as well, it's certainly an interesting place to visit.

Take a canal cruise



 Amsterdam has many canals

This will help orientate you for the city and I can't think of a better way to see the city than gliding along on the water. From this viewpoint you can see the beautiful architecture of the narrow houses, and watch the world go by. The canals are also home to the many gorgeous houseboats. In days gone by the poorest people used to live on the houseboats as they were used for transporting goods but now these structures moored on the canals are home to many people and are worth as much as some homes.


Visit the museums 




The houseboat museum

From the large world renowned museums like the Van Gough and Rijkmuseum to the small and quirky museums like the Houseboat Museum and the Erotic Museum, Amsterdam has something for everyone. 




The Kitchen Maid by Vermeer

The Rijkmuseum has the Night Watch by Rembrandt and The Kitchen Maid by Vermeer whilst the Van Gough museum has the famous Sunflowers. Find out how Anne Frank lived in the Anne Frank House, and if modern art is more your thing the Stedelijk museum houses art from Andy Warhol and Pablo Picasso. If you like lager, try the Heineken museum, where the history of this brew is examined. Did you know it used to be delivered on horse back? As you walk around you are given lager to enjoy and a souvenir glass to take away. 



 The Rijkmuseum

Experience the sex and drugs, from near or afar


I bet that headline caught your attention! Amsterdam is a very laid back city. You can't visit Amsterdam without at least walking down 'The Red Light District'. The sex shops, live sex shows, peep shows and doors with the red lights where ladies entice you in are famous around the world. If you are unsure about visiting, walk down during the day, when there are plenty of couples, coach parties and even the odd family around. Although during the day it feels safe, at night it has a different vibe and gets sleazier with stag parties and single men.  



The Red Light district

Amsterdam's coffee shops, where cannabis is openly sold for personal consumption, were legalised in 1980. There are now at least 250 in the city. If you want to visit one but are unsure check out the Timeout Guide on Amsterdam's drug laws and etiquette.  Staff are reportedly helpful and a menu is available if you are not sure what to order.

Eat local food


A Febo machine

From bitterballen (meatballs) to fries with mayo and stroopwaffle (a waffle with syrup inside), Amsterdam has many delicious street foods particular to the region.  The FEBO machine dispenses snacks such as meatballs, fries and hamburgers, whilst a number of cool organic cafes sell delicious salads, juices, cakes and sandwiches. Have a piece of warm apple pie with slagroom (cream), whilst people watching in a pavement cafe.

Amsterdam is famous for Indonesian food due to their link with the country and if you can, try an Indonesian rice table or Rijsttafel whilst visiting the city. A wide selection of small portions are served, sometimes up to 40 dishes, with the emphasis on different flavours and textures, and popular dishes being satay and rendang. 


There is also a great foodie scene in Amsterdam, with a number of upmarket and Michelin starred restaurants, for those that like their food stylish and refined.


Amsterdam in under 60 seconds from my new travel blog FlyDriveExplore

For tourist information check out I Amsterdam.  I was given the I Amsterdam city card for entrance to the many museums, and free unlimited public transport. It is worth checking out the card if you ever visit.

So this is my guide to the top things to do in Amsterdam. Tell me, have you been or do you want to go?

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37 comments

  1. Fantastic! I spent five nights in Amsterdam many, many years ago. I can highly recommending camping in the city centre as a budget way of staying there. There's a camp ground right in the middle of the city - about a 10 minute walk from the ferry to the city centre. Amazing. :)

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    1. I didn't even know there was a camp site in the centre of the city, that is what is great about Amsterdam, it is so surprising.

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  2. I absolutely love the sound of Amsterdam. I've been trying to get my fella to come with my for years but he says he's only interested in travelling outside of Europe - who says that!? It looks so lovely and picturesque but it's got this unnecessary shady rep.

    Jess
    Philocalist.co.uk

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    1. I love the US but sometimes you just want to go somewhere with a short flight. Europe is so diverse, there must be somewhere he wants to go, surely?

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  3. It's such a beautiful city! I haven't been since my early 20s so I'd really like to go back.

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  4. Gorgeous pictures! Amsterdam is one of my favourite places in Europe x

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    1. Thank you, it is one of my favourite places in Europe too Stephanie.

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  5. LOVE Amsterdam haven't been in so long. This make me want to go back! x

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    1. Hope you get the chance to go back one day.

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  6. I loved reading this. Brings back a lot of memories.

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  7. I have never been to Amsterdam. I would love to.

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    1. It's a very vibrant city, and really close to the UK. Hope you get the chance to go one day.

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  8. I really want to visit Amsterdam, mainly because I'd like to visit the Anne frank house and what not! Amsterdam is a beautiful place! Lovely pics, too! xx

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    1. My mother-in-law said it was well worth visiting.

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  9. I have wanted to go to Amsterdam for years, like Sarah I want to visit the Anne Frank house.

    Laura x x x

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    1. You should go, I honestly can't recommend it highly enough.

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  10. Great post - I would love to visit Amsterdam, ir sounds and looks amazing. Kaz x

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    1. It's not all sex and drugs - it unfairly gets a bad rap. It is such a cultural city. We love it there.

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  11. Beautiful photography. I loved Amsterdam when I went. Such a lovely place full of culture.

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  12. It's somewhere on my to visit list. It looks so cultured and fun at the same time

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    1. It is, something for everyone in Amsterdam.

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  13. I really want to visit Amsterdam especially to see the Anne Frank museum and see all the amazing street art there is out there! So exciting!

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    1. It is an exciting place Ana. You must visit one day.

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  14. I have wanted to visit Amsterdam for ages! I love the sound of the museums and all of the culture. It looks like a beautiful place as well :) X

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    1. It's really beautiful and so different to other cities in Europe as well.

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  15. This is definitely on my bucket list and you are right, you have to go and see the Red Light District, so maybe I will wait until the children are a bit older and we can go on our own. :-)

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  16. I've never been, but would really like to go, it always seems such a friendly, interesting city.

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    1. It is friendly, cool, laid back, and everyone speaks English too, a really great place to visit.

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  17. Amsterdam is firmly on my bucket list of places in the world I NEED to visit :) Such an eclectic city!

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  18. You've made me really want to go back. It's a beautiful city, and definitely well worth a visit.

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  19. I lived in Holland for nearly 2 years and you have captured the highights of Amsterdam very well. My best tip for Amsterdam is to spend some time outside of the city as well. The public transport is fast, reliable and reasonable and cities such as Rotterdam, The Hague and Leiden are all within an hour.

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    1. Thanks Jeremy! That's a great tip, we haven't explore outside of the area much although we have been Marken once/

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