On our trips to Amsterdam, we discovered where it’s the best area to stay in Amsterdam. Travel Tips will help you to make the best of your “one day in Amsterdam” experience or what to do in “Amsterdam in 3 days”. I answer common questions like where to stay on your trip to Amsterdam, unique hotels, Amsterdam food guide, what is the habit of tipping in Amsterdam, vacation cost you should calculate for cool things to do in Amsterdam, attractions for adults and things to do in Amsterdam with kids. The Venice of the North invites with stunning hotels and houseboats on and at the water in the best neighborhood to stay in Amsterdam Center.
In short, what you can find in this article:
Where should I stay in Amsterdam? Best neighborhood to stay in Amsterdam – Food guide: What I MUST eat in Amsterdam! – Fast Food – Sightseeing map – Free Attractions in Amsterdam – Cool places in Amsterdam – Fun things to do – Day tours from Amsterdam – Travel Tips – Happy Amsterdam Holidays 2018!
Best Area to Stay in Amsterdam
The Old Centre
If you want to stay only a short walk from the famous sights, shopping, and nightlife areas, you should choose accommodation in the old town for example at Dam Square, Centraal Station or in the Red Light District. Brouse the medieval streets which were built around the Oude Kerk, dating from 1300, walk along the canals which make Amsterdam, Venice of the North. My recommendation: Book Hotel Twenty Seven and stay next to the Royal Palace.
Where should I stay in Amsterdam?
Well-away from the prime tourist areas you stay in De Jordaan among the locals. Canals thread through this residential neighborhood which are connected by quaint narrow cobbled roads where small restaurants invite to enjoy a meal in a relaxed atmosphere. Famous sights like the Anne Frank House and Dam Square are reachable by foot as De Jordaan is part of the inner city. Avoid staying in accommodation at Marnixstraat or Rozengracht, because these are busy main roads. My recommendation: Book Hotel Mr. Jordaan in the heart of this beautiful neighborhood.
Westerpark is part of Amsterdam West. Eponymous Park with its expansive greenery and cultural attractions is located at Westergasfabriek. Between Prinsengracht and Westergasfabriek you find the busy Haarlemmerstraat. One of the best areas to stay in Amsterdam if you like shopping as it was voted Amsterdam’s best shopping street. Here you will also find great food at affordable prices. Accommodation close to Westerpark is reasonably priced and about 20 minutes from Centraal Station by foot. My recommendation: Book Hotel Morgan & Mees with an on-site bar, terrace and excellent views of the city.
One of the best areas to stay in Amsterdam for shopping!
Bos en Lommer and De Baarsjes
One of Amsterdam’s most dynamic districts are Bos en Lommer and De Baarsjes which host some hip cultural establishments. Green open spaces invite a young multicultural crowd to enjoy this lively area west of Amsterdam city center. My pet-friendly recommendation: Book this bright, quiet park view apartment in De Baarsjes.
Oud-West (Old West)
This multicultural neighborhood borders the center of the city to the west and lies just north of Vondelpark between the three most popular streets in Amsterdam: Overtoom, Kinkerstraat, and de Klercqstraat. The busy area boasts of the best restaurants in the city, trendy designer shops, café bars and cinemas while accommodating for people who love nightlife. Oud-West is close to museums and you can see the historic windmill “De Otter” from the canal. My recommendation: Book the newly renovated Hotel Pilows Anna van den Vondel which has a lovely private garden.
Amsterdam’s smartest and most elegant neighborhood Oud-Zuid is home to some of the World’s best art museums: the Rijksmuseum and Van Gogh Museum. The nightlife around Leidseplein is within easy walking distance. The leafy Vondelpark provides a rest from the constantly rumbling traffic in this busy area which lacks the charm of the inner old city with its canals. My recommendation: Stay at Conservatorium Hotel for world-class design and service.
Best neighborhood to stay in Amsterdam
Most known is this latin quarter for the iconic Albert Cuyp Market and its multicultural mix of restaurants, terraces, and cafés with a flair of the 60’s. De Pijp is within walking distance from Vondelpark and the Museumplein. Plenty bars make for exciting nightlife in this picturesque neighborhood and some good brunch restaurants to treat your hangover with excellence. Stay with a local: book Paul’s BnB
Amsterdam Oost (East-Amsterdam)
Although tourists rarely see Amsterdam Oost, you should consider visiting to be among locals. It’s close to the Old Town. Wide streets lined by monumental 19th-century buildings are home to a lot of restaurants which offer great food from all over the world. One of the most trendy parts of Amsterdam, Weesperzijde, lies on the eastern side of the river Amstel and looks onto de Pijp. You find here great accommodation for less money. Head off for a break from the city buzz to Oosterpark or the Tropenmuseum (Museum of the Tropics). Frequent trams connect to the center. Book Hotel V Fizeaustraat. Parking and Bike rental available.
Plantage and Old Jewish Quarter
In contrast to the narrow cobbled streets in the old town, this neighborhood is spacious and green, with Artis Zoo and the city’s botanical gardens to explore and enjoy close-by.
The Old Jewish Quarter is a picturesque district with various museums and Jewish landmarks. You are only a tram ride away from the major sights of the city. Book Artis Plantage Apartment to hear the lions roar by night.
Oosterlijke Eilanden (Eastern Docklands) and Amsterdam Noord (North-Amsterdam)
On the Oosterlijke Eilanden the open spaces and industrial architecture are in total contrast to the old medieval Amsterdam city center. Adventurous spirits live on in historic warehouses which are repurposed into contemporary cultural hotspots. Stay at the exceptional Bed Breakfast Boat of Rene.
The NDSM Warf is a cultural hotspot for artists. The area hosts a variety of festivals, parties and exhibitions within its post-industrial surroundings throughout the year. Amsterdam Noord and the Eastern Docklands are only a few minutes away from the old town by ferry from the central station.
Amsterdam Noord (also known as “the IJ”) consists of charming little villages with stylish houses and generous green areas in between. Here some of the most exciting festivals take place. Beautiful terraces along the waterside allow enjoying the stunning scenery of the water surrounded world city. Recognizable by its monumental skyline lies Overhoek in the most southerly part of Amsterdam North. It is a trendy district with excellent accommodation options. Book North Apartment Amsterdam to stay in Amsterdam Noord.
Best Location to Stay in Amsterdam: On a Houseboat of course!
I always wanted to rent a houseboat in the city center, in my opinion, the best location to stay in Amsterdam. On a budget, we were able to find a tiny little tea boat in the harbor behind the main station. The rent for small, simple and larger, more luxury houseboats vary greatly.
Cool Places to Stay in Amsterdam!
Locals live on houseboats along the canals in Amsterdam. They are often lovingly decorated with flowers. Their inhabitants enjoy the most beautiful living culture in the Netherlands. As temporary residents of a houseboat during our holidays in Amsterdam, we felt a bit like Hollanders for a short while and it felt good!
Self-Catering Houseboat, Amsterdam, Rental for a Small Budget
The houseboat Little Amstel is modernly furnished and lies on the river Amstel at the edge of the historical center of Amsterdam. Renting a houseboat like the Little Amstel does not mean renouncing the usual amenities. It offers you well-equipped rooms with free WLAN and a private bathroom.
The rooms are decorated with wooden floors, bright walls and offer a view of the river Amstel. If the weather is nice, you can relax on the terrace and enjoy the view over the river. The Rembrandtplein is a 10-minute walk away.
The Amico Amsterdam Houseboat is an accommodation for travelers with a small budget. 300 m from Beurs van Berlage, this simple houseboat is 400m from Paleis op de Dam and 500m from the Regardz Zilveren Toren, Congress Centre Amsterdam. You share the kitchen with a microwave and the WC/bathroom with the captain. Towels and bed linen are available.
In the most popular part of Amsterdam lies The Boat House on Realengracht. It’s not a houseboat, it’s a boathouse by the water. With free WLAN, sitting area, flat-screen cable TV, iPod docking station, private bath/shower and airport transfer, this accommodation leaves nothing to be desired. The accommodation is located 2.2 km from Amsterdam Central Station and 3 km from Dam Square. Book it!
Houseboat Prinsheerlijk offers accommodation for the discerning, only 400m from the Museum of Bag and Purses Hendrikje and six minutes walk from the Heineken Experience. 1 bedroom, flat screen TV.
Popular attractions near the Houseboat Prinsheerlijk II include the Carré Theatre, Rembrandtplein and the Flower Market. The accommodation offers a free shuttle service to Schiphol Airport.
More houseboats Amsterdam: Rentals at reasonable prices
Luxury in Amsterdam: Rent a houseboat with that little extra!
Pantheos Top Houseboat
The Pantheos Houseboat is 260m from the Anne Frank House and 900m from the Royal Palace. It offers WLAN, TV, terrace, fully equipped kitchen with a dishwasher and a microwave. Own bath/shower with free care products.
Prince Royal Houseboat
Prince Royal Houseboat is located directly opposite the Anne Frank House and 700m from the Royal Palace in Amsterdam with its own terrace. In the kitchen, you will find dishwasher, oven, microwave, coffee machine, and kettle. The amenities also includes 2 flat-screen TVs. Book it!
The Luxurious 110m2 3br Houseboat offers a terrace and free WLAN and is located in the heart of Amsterdam, near the Dutch National Opera and Ballet, Nicholas and Beurs van Berlage. All accommodations have a terrace, a kitchen with a dishwasher and a private bathroom. An oven, a toaster, and a coffee machine are also available. You can reach Dam Square from the boat after an 8-minute walk and the Royal Palace of Amsterdam after a 9-minute walk.
The romantic Houseboat-Apartment Sumatra also meets higher demands. Nine minutes walk from the Anne Frank House, free WLAN, terrace with city view, 1 bedroom, fully equipped kitchen, bathroom with bathtub or shower.
Still didn’t find the right houseboat for you? Check here
for more choice.
Houseboat Bed & Breakfast Amsterdam, Niederlande
The Houseboat Bed & Breakfast Amsterdam – Netherlands, Captain Anna is a paddle steamer from 1911. The accommodation is air-conditioned and offers a view of the city. Your own bathroom offers free care products. Bed linen is provided. On the captain Anna you can relax on the terrace or at the bar. There is a direct ferry connection between the accommodation and Amsterdam Central Station.
The Luxury Hotel Boat Zwaantje is located 800m from the Basilica of St. Nicholas. It offers a terrace, continental breakfast, and free WLAN.
The boat B&B Amstel Wakeup Amsterdam offers flat screen TV, sitting area, DVD player, private shower/WC, WLAN and a terrace. The boat is located in Zuideramstel, just a short walk from the famous Albert Cuyp Street Market, 4.1km from Amsterdam Central Station and 3.7km from Dam Square. The surrounding district was built by well-known architects such as Michel de Klerk and Piet Kramerin the style of the Amsterdam School. Book it!
The Luxury Houseboat, an accommodation with free bikes and a terrace in Amsterdam, is located 2.4 km from Vondelpark, 2.7 km from Vondelpark Open Air Theater and 2.9 km from IBC. WLAN is free of charge in all areas. The boat has a flat-screen satellite TV and a living room. The kitchen has a dishwasher, oven, microwave, coffee machine, and electric kettle. The museum square is 2.9 km from the boat.
Look for more houseboat offers
Unique Hotels Amsterdam
We often return to Amsterdam, because the Venice of the North has definitely enchanted us. A historic hotel makes it into my “Best of – List” of the most beautiful hotels in the world. If you want to have a very special experience, I warmly recommend the centrally located Grand Hotel Amrâth!
The five-star hotel is located in a beautiful Art-Nouveau building built a century ago as Scheepvaarthuis (“naval house”), the offices of the six large Dutch shipping companies. Here you can learn more about it.
Amsterdam Where to Stay: Find Affordable Accommodation
Apartments and hotels in the city center are more in the upper price segment. You will find special offers in the low season. Traditional but lovely little guesthouses, where you have to carry your suitcase up the steep stairs for lack of an elevator, are less expensive or stay in apartments, where you share the bathroom and kitchen with your host.
We have also stayed in hostels. These charge per person and not per rooms. Usually, hostels are more expensive for couples than simple guesthouses, which charge per room. Filter apartments and hotels according to your budget.
Apartments and Hotels Amsterdam and Surroundings
If you move the circle a little further around the center, you will find a better value for money for hotels. Furthermore, the advantage is that you stay among locals, it’s less busy and you may find cheap parking! Public transport is excellent and cycle paths guarantee the best connection to the center. Here you can find apartments and hotels in the Amsterdam area.
Order your Amsterdam travel guide today!
Is One Day in Amsterdam Enough?
I’m probably not the one to answer this question. Amsterdam is the only city where I could live happily even as a country girl. The friendly atmosphere with the flair of the adventure of earlier explorers attracts me magically. To get more than just a quick impression of Amsterdam, I think you should plan 3 days or more in Amsterdam. Especially if you want to take a guided tour and visit museums.
Cool Places in Amsterdam
It is difficult to choose the most beautiful districts because there are countless of them in Amsterdam. Interesting places where tourists and locals mix can be found here:
Nine narrow cobblestone streets connect Leidsegracht and Raadhuisstraat. They are known for their unique and innovative independent businesses. Here you will find vintage stores, designer shops, as well as some original cafés and galleries.
The narrow canals and streets of the trendy Jordaan are flanked by indie boutiques, cozy pubs, and trendy restaurants. If you are in Amsterdam on a Saturday, don’t miss the market on Lindengracht and the flea market around Noorderkerk.
Dam takes its name from its original function as a dam on the Amstel, hence the name of the city. The dam, built around 1270, formed the first connection between the settlements on the river bank. Dam Square has been a central public square and a popular meeting place since the 17th century, flanked by the Royal Palace.
The nightlife pulsates on and near Leidseplein, where the audience is entertained by street artists. The surrounding bars and restaurants are always well frequented. Local theatres such as the Neo-Renaissance Stadtschouwburg present classical music, stand-up comedy, and musicals.
Spacious 19th-century city park with playground, ponds and open-air stage. Numerous events take place in summer.
Amsterdam Places to See
What do you have to see in Amsterdam?
If you would like to visit several museums during your stay, you should buy the City Pass. Many discounts and public transport in the city center are included. It’s best to order your Amsterdam City Card, Holland Pass or individual tickets in advance so you don’t waste time waiting in queues on-site. Download it here.
In Amsterdam, you will find the tourist information center next to the main station and the IAmsterdam logo.
19th-century building with masterpieces of Dutch Golden Age painting and an extensive European art collection. Buy your ticket online.
Van Gogh Museum
Museum with the world’s largest collection of Van Gogh paintings, drawings and letters. Book here.
An interactive tour through the history of the beer giant in the former brewery with a tasting room finale. Book online here.
The exhibitions of predominantly modern works in this photo gallery attract talent from around the world such as Dana Lixenberg and Jamie Hawkesworth. It addresses a number of demanding personal and political topics. Ticket. Keizersgracht 399-401, huismarseille.nl
FOAM Photography Museum (contemporary photography), House Boat Museum (life on a houseboat as it really is), Sex Museum (the oldest sex museum in the world), EYE (an impressive film museum), Museum Of Bags And Purses (a Must for fashion lovers), Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum. Here you can find the online tickets and a description of most museums.
Free Attractions in Amsterdam
If you need to keep a tight eye on your travel budget, you’ll be happy to hear that many Amsterdam attractions are free. Here you can find our favorites:
- Free city tour with travel guide is one of Amsterdam fun things to do and you shouldn’t miss!
- The Bloemenmarkt is a floating flower market on the Singel Canal with an impressive variety of plants and flowers, including the famous Dutch tulips.
- Free boat trip with the ferries: We took several ferries to explore Amsterdam-Noord and its surroundings. They are free and you can take your bike with you.
- Enjoy the view from Europe’s largest library just before sunset. On the top floor, there is a restaurant with a terrace. Oosterdokskade 143.
- The roof of the NEMO Science Center also offers excellent free views. Oosterdok 2.
- Music and artists in the city parks
Here are some more free suggestions from the Amsterdam Tourist Information Office.
Amsterdam Sightseeing Map
Amsterdam Sightseeing Map (download pdf below)
Here you can download your Amsterdam Sightseeing Map pdf:
What to do in Amsterdam in 3 days?
My No. 1 Activity in Amsterdam: Bike Tour or Bike Rental
My favorite activities in Amsterdam include cycling tours. However, one of the craziest things to do in Amsterdam city center, too! You have to maneuver between thousands of wandering tourists and Dutchies, who speed along without hesitation! Ideally, you should book a bike tour to avoid a stressful experience.
Amsterdam fun things to do!
If you want to decide later, you can rent your bike on site. The rental bikes often only have backpedaled brakes. Ask for others if you don’t feel comfortable with them. We liked the tour around Amsterdam a lot! If you arrive by car, you can book a discounted parking ticket with your bike tour.
Dutch Venice: Best Canal Cruise, Amsterdam
The probably most comfortable way to visit Dutch Venice is on a canal trip. For us, the best canal trip, Amsterdam, was by Hop On-Hop Off-Boat. You can easily reach the most important sights on the water and get Amsterdam insider tips from the guide at the same time. You can book the canal trip Amsterdam on-site or here online in advance.
Stylish Breakfast in Amsterdam with a Boat Tour
The Gs Brunch Boat, a converted coal ship with retro interior and sunroof, offers breakfast on the water. The boat trip includes an à la carte menu with eggs, Benedict and Bloody Marys. The tour lasts 1¾ hours and leads through the historical center and to the IJ harbor with its modern architecture. Sat-Sun in winter and Fri-Sun from April to August. Keizersgracht 177.
Red Light District Amsterdam – Address and Information
From brothels and sex shops to museums, you’ll find everything in Amsterdam’s red-light district. Address: De Wallen. Why is this area so well known beyond a wide circle of users? Probably because of the completely free and relaxed attitude of the Dutch towards prostitution. The women offer themselves publicly in shop windows already in the early evening. Amsterdam’s red-light district has a friendly, casual atmosphere. Book your Red Light District Tour here.
Cool Things to Do in Amsterdam
Events in Amsterdam, The Netherlands
- April 27th is Koningsdag (King’s Day). King Willem-Alexander’s birthday is celebrated with an all-day street festival.
- On June 17, the Open Garden Weekend takes place, where many of the large courtyards hidden behind the canal houses are open to the public.
- Amsterdam Roots Festival July 2nd – 8th. World music festival.
- Pride Amsterdam 28 July – 5 August. Amsterdam Pride or Amsterdam Gay Pride Festival.
- The Canal Parade is the highlight of Pride Amsterdam on August 4th, when the whole city cheers on the elaborate carriages and their costumed crew.
- The Wandertheaterfestival Parade returns every summer to the Netherlands with a variety of artistic surprises.
What do you have to see in Amsterdam?
Albert Cuyp Markt
This lively street market in the district of Pijp, south of the center, is over 100 years old and is supposed to be the largest day market in Europe. Fruit, fish, flowers, clothes and Dutch specialties such as Dutch poffertjes (small pancakes) are offered at local prices. Albert Cuypstraat.
Art and Book Markets on the Spui
In the atmospheric markets of the Spui in Amsterdam, you will find works of art or rare books.
The Begijnhof dates from the early 15th century and is one of the oldest courtyards in Amsterdam. There are many beautiful places, but this one is also very romantic. Search for a brown wooden door and enter another world! The quiet garden courtyard, surrounded by gabled buildings, could not be a greater contrast to the busy Spui square. Watch out for Begijnhof 34 – the wooden house is one of the oldest houses in Amsterdam!
In the old Jewish quarter of Jodenbuurt, daily flea markets take place. The Waterlooplein flea market is a huge daily open-air market with over 300 stalls selling everything from kitsch to antique furniture and vintage clothing. In de Jodenbuurt you will also find the Rembrandt House, the Portuguese-Israelite Synagogue and the Jewish Historical Museum.
Things to Do in Amsterdam with Kids
In Amsterdam on foot from the busy Haarlemmerstraat to the northwest, you will find Westerpark. It is less crowded than the famous Vondelpark in the south. During the day the park is attractive for children and dogs, at night for adults when the Westergasfabriek – a former gasworks – comes to life.
Bicycle Tour Amsterdam with Children
Visiting the Venice of the North with children on a bike is fun! However, it is better to join a specialized bike tour, as the locals know where it is safe. You won’t get bored on this child-friendly tour!
In the east of the city is Artis Zoo, founded in 1838. The full name “Natura Artis Magistra” means something like “nature is the teacher or master of art”. 1400 animal species from all over the world live on the 14 hectares of the zoo. There are a petting zoo and an aquarium showing a mini-Amsterdam canal.
Child-friendly farms – Petting Zoo
You’ll find child-friendly farms and petting zoos in some parks in Amsterdam. In the Amsterdam city forest (Amsterdamse Bos), four kilometers from the park entrance, there is an organic goat farm (De Ridammerhoeve). More than 150 goats run around, which can be stroked, brushed and milked. On Saturdays, children can watch goat’s cheese being made from fresh goat’s milk.
City Library Amsterdam
The impressive new building from 2007 offers great reading and cuddling corners for children in the basement. The whole family can enjoy the view of Amsterdam from the roof terrace.
Other options, also suitable as a bad weather program are the Zoological or Geological Museum, the Tropical House, the Butterfly House, and the Nemo Science Center.
Amsterdam Attractions for Adults
Worldwide, Amsterdam attracts young and old because of its liberal attitude. It is not just because you can smoke a joint with impunity on the open road or because of the open attitude towards sex and prostitution, which is also legal here.
The relaxed atmosphere is refreshing and contagious. Sights: Young people and the young at heart will find some Amsterdam weekend tips below:
Western Canal Belt and the Red Light District
Walk around Leidseplein in Amsterdam. There is a colorful program of comedy (Boom Chicago, Comedy Café), theatre (Stadsschouwburg), ballet and opera. The student cinema and art house Kriterion shows films worth seeing as well as documentaries and plays live music in the bar. The Movies is the oldest cinema in town (1912).
Book Tickets for Saturday evening improshow at Boom Chicago here.
Of course, a Red Light Walking Tour is a one of a lifetime experience. More information here.
Student Bar – Café De Gieter
The cheapest beer of Amsterdam is available from Monday to Thursday! Korte Leidsedwarsstraat 179.
There are coffee shops in various places and around the red light district. Prices vary. Ask the locals where it’s cheapest.
De Nieuwe Anita
Meeting place for “young professionals” in shared living room atmosphere. In the back, you can see the dance floor from a gallery. Frederik Hendrikstraat 111.
Even in the Roest you can feel at home. Because every visitor can incorporate his ideas, the furnishing is constantly changing. Jacob Bontiusplaats 1.
Recycled furniture adorns this café by the water with live music and DJ nights. Dijksgracht 4.
Nightlife Amsterdam Tips
Hip Arts Center for live concerts & clubbing, as well as a terrace restaurant with a Mediterranean menu. Electronic music and world-class DJs in an almost unchanged newspaper factory. 125 Wibautstraat.
What’s on Amsterdam?
Old milk factory: Melkweg is a popular music and cultural center in Amsterdam. Lijnbaansgracht 234A.
An old, almost unchanged church, in which today mainly indie rock bands play. Weteringchan’s 6-8.
You find Noorderlicht Café in Amsterdam Noord. It is the place where locals can be found. NDSM-Plein 102
Nightlife Amsterdam for film and live music lovers: With the ferry from the main station you reach de Pllek in a quarter of an hour free of charge. In the landscape of shipping containers and warehouses, a beach bar and a music bar invite you to the party. The program is eclectic, with live music, dance, yoga and film as well as all-day meals. TT Neveritaweg 59.
The OT303 is a house full of artistic activities, much of it is for free. In the evening, films, live music, DJs, and jam sessions are on the program. The bar is home to De Peper, where volunteers serve vegan food four days a week (19.00-20.30). Address: Overtoom 301.
Secret corners in Amsterdam
Amsterdam: What to see?
Anne Frank Haus
If you ask yourself in Amsterdam: What to see? is my answer, the Anne Frank House. It is the secret place where Anne Frank and her family hid from the Nazis during the Second World War. I was very happy that I had bought the ticket online before, as this is one of the most popular places in town. Book an Anne Frank tour online here.
Ons’ Lieve Heer Op Solder
The Anne Frank House is not the only secret attic in Amsterdam worth a visit. In the heart of the bustling red-light district is a 17th-century Catholic church built during the Protestant Reformation in the attic of a merchant’s house with a wealth of iconographic art and interesting artifacts. The exhibition Voices of Tolerance reflects religious freedom. Ons’ Lieve Heer Op Solder is Amsterdam’s second oldest museum and a magnificent example of Dutch Golden Age architecture. Oudezijds Voorburgwal 38.
De Hortus Botanicus
If you need a moment of peace and quiet, you can escape the hustle and bustle of the streets in Amsterdam’s Botanical Garden. The giant water lily Victoria, palm trees, colorful flowers, greenhouses, and the butterfly house invite to relax. Middenlaan Plantation 2a.
Proeflokaal (Tasting Room) Wynand Fockink
Hidden behind Dam Square is one of the most beautiful tasting rooms in Holland, where you can try Dutch Jenever, distilled at home. Pijlsteeg 31.
Amsterdam Food Guide: Must Eat in Amsterdam
Streetfood – Amsterdam Fast Food
Do you want to eat like the locals in Amsterdam? Insiders know: eating well and cheap in Amsterdam is easy. Get a sandwich with fresh herring at one of the stalls or eat “uit de muur”, which literally means eating your food “out of the wall”. Snacks are located behind small glass doors in warmed compartments.
If the required coin is inserted into the slot, the door can be opened. So you literally eat delicious Dutch and many Indonesian specialties “out of the wall”. We could not only eat cheap food in Amsterdam! At a juice bar, we quenched our thirst with freshly squeezed orange juice for € 1 (!) the glass.
Mr Blou I Love You
For gourmets in Amsterdam: Restaurant Insider Tip is Mr Blou I Love You. The owner, a former star chef, offers vegan food at his market stall. About 95% of the products are organic and most come from the region. There are cakes, smoothies, wraps, and salads, but the focus is on homemade falafel. You can enjoy your snack on the sheepskin-covered benches under the awnings. Elandsgracht 150.
Dining out in Amsterdam
De Vier Pilaren
A traditional Dutch pancake house (also gluten-free), between Leidseplein and Vondelpark. It has both sweet and savory pancakes and poffertjes. Eidsebosje 5 | Stadhouderkade 11.
Restaurant Tips Amsterdam
Recommendation: Go to this very small restaurant in Amsterdam, where it’s worth waiting for! Just order yourself a coffee and wait for your table. An ideal place for brunch. Singel 103.
For an authentic Dutch dining experience, visit a ‘brown café’, the typical Amsterdam pubs. The name ‘brown café’ comes from the dark brown wooden furniture in these pubs. Some of them date from the 17th century. The oldest, In ‘t Aepjen, first opened its doors in 1509!
You can eat cheaply in Brown Cafés. Amsterdam specialty is a traditional Brown Café snack with Bitterballen (breaded and fried balls with ragout filling) served with mustard and a Dutch beer. Here you can find the bruin cafés in Amsterdam.
Restaurant De Struisvogel
De Struisvogel is a restaurant tip for insiders. The door to Restaurant De Struisvogel is below eye level and leads into a cellar. Inside, wooden furniture and a huge table with choices at reasonable prices create an unpretentious dining atmosphere.
The three-course menu includes simple starters – pâté, salad or soup – followed by main courses such as ostrich steak with quince compote and haddock with red pepper, fennel, and mussels. Keizersgracht 312.
Find here other restaurants with traditional Dutch cuisine.
Tipping in Amsterdam
Service charges are often already added to the bill. In this case, tipping in Amsterdam is not expected, but it is common to round up the bill. If you are happy with the service in restaurants, a tip of about 5% of the total amount will be most appreciated. If you pay by credit card, add the tip for the waiter in cash to make sure that the employee gets the tip and not the management.
Plane, Train and Bus Trips to Amsterdam
Amsterdam is only 20 minutes by train from the airport. You can keep the cost to travel to Amsterdam very low by bus. Trains, especially high-speed trains, are a good choice for those arriving from Belgium, Paris or even from some places in Germany. A ferry is an option for travelers from Great Britain. Here you will find cheap bus connections, trains and flights to Amsterdam.
Cheap Parking, Amsterdam, and Surrounding Areas
Cheap parking in Amsterdam is a challenge but not impossible. If you arrive, you can find information on parking in Amsterdam, where you can park for the cheapest or even for free.
Special tip! Cheap parking, Amsterdam, and surrounding area:
If you book a bike tour with Baja Bikes, you get a massive discount on parking in Amsterdam. Book here.
Trip to Amsterdam Cost – Amsterdam on a Budget
As World Nomads we are traveling on a tight budget and learned to find cheap options. To visit a world city is always a costly challenge for us. Is Amsterdam cheap? You can keep your Amsterdam vacation cost down to a massive extent with Couch surfing and by visiting only free attractions but you may want not to miss out on some of the beautiful accommodation offers and city tours. Although street food is cheap you probably want to try some restaurants and pubs. I’ll give you some examples of what costs you have to expect, because an average cost depends too much on personal preferences, where you want to stay, what you want to do and what to see.
Trip to Amsterdam Cost – Budget Travel Amsterdam
A meal in a restaurant costs 15€ – 30€. Half a liter of local beer 5€ and 0.33l water 2.27€. Amsterdam food prices are slightly higher than in Germany and comparable with France. The cost of entry to the Rijksmuseum is €17.50 and others are similarly priced. You can lower your Amsterdam vacation cost for activities with an Amsterdam City Card, Holland Pass, or special deals of combinations with museum entries, canal cruises and/or a day visit to Keukenhof or other sights for around 40€ with public transport included. Check here. A day ticket for public transport in the city center is 7.50€, a bike rental around 10€ a day. You find decent accommodation close to the city center from about 100€ per night.
Amsterdam on Sundays
On Sundays, shops are mainly open on and near Nieuwendijk and Kalverstraat in the afternoon.
Day Tours from Amsterdam
Beach at Zandvoort
It’s not far from Amsterdam to the sea. A train ticket from Amsterdam to Zandvoort by the sea costs only € 6.60. The journey takes half an hour. On this occasion, you should stop in Haarlem on the way to Zandvoort. It’s a mini-version of Amsterdam with an appealing history. We rode the bike all the way – it was wonderful!
Unique things to do in Amsterdam
Zaanse Schans Tour
The village is just 20 minutes from Amsterdam and features six historic windmills clustered together. These are all working windmills and have various uses. Book it here.
For a fantastic trip back into ‘Old Holland’.Volendam, a picturesque town on the shores of the IJsselmeer, just 20 km north of Amsterdam. Book your trip to Volendam with Zaanse Schans.
In this peaceful, picturesque corner of the Netherlands, you’ll find boat-filled waterways, pretty footpaths, zero cars (they’re banned here), and bicycle trails. Book it!
Grand Holland Tour: Madurodam, Royal Delft, Euromast
Madurodam, a cool miniature city, to Binnenhof, the world’s oldest parliament building in The Hague, and to the home of Delft Blue porcelain. Then it’s off to Rotterdam to climb the Euromast for dazzling views. This is the only way to do Holland in a day! Book it!
Things to Do in Amsterdam in March till May
Visiting Amsterdam in March till May, flowers start to adorn the bridges and streets along the canals and houses. If you plan your visit to Amsterdam during springtime, you have the opportunity to visit the unique Keukenhof Flower Park.
Visiting Amsterdam in March till May to see the tulipfields!
Things to Do in Amsterdam in March till May: read more in my article about Keukenhof Tulippark, which can be easily reached by bus from Amsterdam. Book your Tulip Festival Card or entrance tickets to Keukenhof online here.
My reading tips for the Netherlands:
Arcen Castle Gardens, Netherlands
Exploring the North of the Netherlands
My book tips for Amsterdam and Europe: