Entertainment in Amsterdam

Entertainment in Amsterdam

Boom Chicago – If you are looking for a few hours of non-stop comedy, Boom Chicago is the place to go. Started by a group of Americans, Boom Chicago has been a prominent name in the Amsterdam entertainment scene for over eight years now. The show is a mix of improvisation and sketch comedy, with has a lot of audience participation.

Bimhuis Amsterdam – If you want to listen to jazz while you are in Amsterdam, Bimhuis is the place to head to. It is one of the best jazz places you can have in this part of the world. It was started in the 1970s by a group of Dutch jazz musicians and have, over the years, attracted many well known names including Chet Baker, Kenny Wheeler and Steve Solo.

Melkweg – One of Amsterdam’s biggest entertainment venues, Melkweg is located in a former diary, and offers everything from dance, music, bar, disco to movies, drama, restaurant and even a tearoom. Most weekends see live music and dance events. The clientele is young and mixed, and the atmosphere is casual and cool.

Paradiso – Commonly known as the “pop temple” of the Netherlands, Paradiso offers an eclectic mix of music – from pop to hip hop to contemporary to jazz to multimedia festivals to even poetry and films. Housed in an old church, Paradiso is just a stone’s throw away from Leidesplein, making it a very convenient location to get to.

Movie Theaters – Amsterdam has over 45 cinemas. Most movies are shown in their original language with Dutch subtitles, except for those that may appeal to a younger audience, in which case make sure you go for the OV version. Some of the more popular cinemas are Pathe De Munt, Pathe Tuschinski and Rialto.

Sinners in Heaven – Sinners in Heaven is the place for the jet-setters in Amsterdam. Of all the places in Amsterdam, this is the one you are most likely to bump into a celebrity. And if you want to party with the locals, this club offers a happy respite from the usual touristic crowds. Its not very big but the decor is expensive and chic, with lots of mirrors and designer furniture.

Concertgebouw – Built in the late 19th century, the home of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra is known for outstanding acoustics. In addition to orchestras, jazz and world music groups perform here. The concert season runs from September through March and tickets run anywhere from about 15 to 100 Euros. They also have a free lunch concert every Wednesday at 12:30.

Muziektheater – The Muziektheater is a relatively recent addition to the Netherlands arts scene, but it quickly took up a prominent place thanks to the grand classic decor, its capacity to seat more than 1500 people and the events hosted which include international opera, ballet, and orchestra performances.

Holland Casino – You might have seen a smaller version of the Holland Casino even as you stepped off the plane at the airport. But the bigger, and the original version is at the Leidseplein, across the entrance to the Vondel Park. The Casino offers Roulette, Carribean Stud Poker, Black Jack, Sic Bo, Big Wheel, Poker, Punto Banco and many others.

Red Light District – No top ten list of Amsterdam is complete without a mention of the Red Light District. Located right in the middle of the city, where normal every day life happens right next to sex and prostitution, the Red Light District is as much a Dutch symbol as clogs and cheese. Regardless of whether you are interested in paying for services on offer, a walk down the red light district, with semi-nude women (and men, on some streets), just walking down RLD is a recommended Dutch experience.

Amsterdam’s open-air markets – the best way to shop!

open air markets Amsterdam

Markets in any country are one of the best ways to truly embrace a new culture, learn more about the locals and use the time to discover the different colours, sights, tastes and smells which makes the city unique. Amsterdam has wonderfully eclectic open air markets, each of which offer something different and unique (for all). If your idea for visiting an open air market to buy the freshest produce for the evening meal – you will find an open air market to cater to your needs – what’s more there are markets for readers, collectors as well as cheese connoisseurs. In fact many expats are amazed by the huge range of goods, foods, books, cheese, and collectibles which are sold at various open air markets in Amsterdam.

Organic farmers’ markets
Boerenmarkt on Noordermarkt

The biologisch boerenmarkt or the organic farmers’ market is the perfect place to find the freshest, best quality fruits and vegetables. In addition to being the top shopping spot for fresh produce, the market is the place to be on a Saturday morning in the Jordaan. Before making a purchase on the array of fresh goods, visitors are given the chance to taste handcrafted cheeses, homemade herb pestos, specialty mushrooms and artisanal baked goods. Beside the chance to select organic veggies and fruits, the market also boasts a large number of flea market stalls, where a variety of trinkets can be found.

The market trades throughout the year and is open on Saturdays from 09:00 until 17:00 and is located in Noordermarkt on the Prinsengracht, Jordaan close to Noorderkerk Haarlemmerstraat.

The Pure Market
The Pure Market is a travelling Sunday market and is the perfect place to find delicious, traditional, local Dutch food. What’s more there are additional stalls (80 stalls in total) which offer fresh produce. The market is made up of sunny terraces, and many visit the market for the music and the entertainment on offer, which is a treat for the whole family. At the Pure Market one can do their weekly grocery shopping or can visit the market to enjoy local snacks and drinks. In addition to the wonderful selection of fresh foods and produce, this vibrant market also has a small choice of non-edible items.

The Pure Market is open on the last Sunday of the month (from the months of March to October, except in July) It is open from 11:00 until 18:00 at Park Frankendael, Oost-Watergraafsmeer

The Pure Market can also be found, every third Sunday of the month (from March through October, except July), at Zuidas, George Gershwinplein, from 11:00 – 18:00

Albert Cuyp Market
In this market, shoppers are able to browse through more than 250 stalls which trade in everything, from cheese to bike chains, fresh produce to fried street snacks, shaving cream and shoes as well as clothes. The huge array of goods on offer has made the Albert Cuyp market one of the busiest market in Amsterdam.

The market trades throughout the year, from Monday – Saturday from 09:00 until 17:00.

Located in Albert Cuypstraat, De Pijp.

This open air market received the vote as being one of the best markets in the Netherlands in 2007/2008, and what’s more this open air shopping emporium is considered as Amsterdam’s most affordable and most multicultural market. The market offers samples of exotic foods, and one can find a wide selection of funky outfits. There is also a selection of fresh bread to choose from and of course cheese.

Dappermarkt is open all year round from Monday to Saturday from 09:00 – 17:00

The Flower Market (Bloemenmarkt)
Once the weekly shop has been completed and the evening meal planned, a stop at the flower or Bloemenmarkt is a must. Flower tradition is an age old Dutch tradition and the Dutch love nothing more than to decorate their homes with fresh and fragrant blooms. The market is a canal-side alley and here flower shoppers will be presented with dozens of gorgeous blooms, bulbs and plants. Regardless of the time of year, each of the stalls in the market offers an assortment of seasonal scents and a stunning rainbow of floral choices.

The Flower Market trades throughout the year and is open from Monday to Saturday from 09:00 – 17:30 and on Sunday from 11:00 until 17:00. The market can be found in the Central Canal District.

The Spui Book Market
There is truly a market for everyone in Amsterdam. If you are looking to decorate your home with flowers, find a gift or prepare a scrumptious meal from scratch, the assortment of markets caters to every need. The Spui Book Market is a must for all avid readers and bookworms and the mere sight of the old-fashioned book market located in between the hustle and bustle of a Friday in a modern Amsterdam is just one of the cultural diversities that sets this fantastic Dutch city apart from all others. If you are looking to find old art and photography books – you’ll hit the jackpot when visiting the Spui Book Market.

The book market trades all year round, every Friday from 10:00 – 18:00, at Spui, Old Centrum

There is no doubt that spending time at any of the open-air markets is the ideal way to submerge one’s self in the diverse and fascinating culture of the Dutch. The markets are open and trade regardless of the weather and even if you plan to visit the stalls to do some ‘window shopping’ the markets are the perfect escape for the whole family and the chance to gaze at and discover the interesting and unusual wares on sale!

Shopping areas in Amsterdam

Shopping areas Amsterdam

These are the top shopping areas in Amsterdam


The Leidsestraat connects both the Koningsplein and the Leidseplein together and starts at the Singel canal heading south. , Leidsestraat is a narrow street with a set of tram lines in the middle and has just about every shop you can imagine to satify even the most die hard of shopaholics. Department stores and fashion stores line the street as well as eateries and souvenir shops. So getting your shopping fix or something to eat isn’t hard to do in this part of town.


A pedestrian friendly shopping area with coffee shops, pubs, shopping and of course the main sport in Amsterdam people watching. Outdoor seating is facing to the street, so people are facing the people walking around. Another place that will satisfy die hard shopaholics.


A shopping day in Amsterdam is incomplete without paying a visit to the Kalverstraat.
The most familiar street of The Netherlands already exists for more than six hundred years now. At least, the oldest saved document in which the name ‘die Calverstraete’ is mentioned, dates from the fourth of January 1393. The name of the street refers to the lively business in cows, oxes and calves which took place in the street until 1629. After the disappearance of the cattle-market, the Kalverstraat turned into a stylish shopping street. Up until about thirty years ago the street was not only familiar because of the shops, but also well known as a street full of lunchrooms, restaurants, hotels and cinema’s.

P.C. Hooftstraat

The famous Dutch shopping street for a fantastic array of shops and visitor numbers increase every year.
The P.C. Hooftstraat is THE shopping street to:
- find all the big brands such as Gucci, La Coste, DKNY, etc
- pamper yourself
- find unique and stunning boutiques
Check out their website for the latest information

Places to eat amsterdam

places to eat amsterdam

As you’d expect from such a densely populated place it has its fair share of eateries and just like all cities these vary from greasy burger joints in the red light district through to world class Michelin starred eateries, it’s a question of taste (excuse the pun). There are over a 1000 restaurants catering for all tastes and budgets
The majority of restaurants are open in the morning and breakfast is served in many hotels and other food outlets until 10:00. The locals like to eat lunch between 12:00 and 14:00 and dinner around 17:00 to 20:00. Your likely to find that a lot of restaurants close at 22:00 but there is a wide variety of night restaurants, bars, brown cafes and takeaways that continue to serve selected hot and cold dishes and snacks throughout the night.
We’d urge you to get out there and uncover these gem yourself but we have given you a headstart with across section of establishments of all quality below:

Krua Thai Classic

Krua Thai Classic is a pricey but classy and reputable Thai restaurant known for it’s friendly and helpful staff. Open since 1979, the decor is surprisingly modern and the restaurant has been long known as one of the best Thai restaurants in Amsterdam.
Krua Thai Classic Restaurant 
Staalstraat 22
1011 JM
 The Netherlands
Email: info@kruathai.nl
Phone: 020-6229533
Website: kruathai.nl


If you like Japanese Cuisine, you’ll love Yamazato. Yamazato has a real authentic feel and makes you feel like you’re dining in Japan. The atmosphere is extremely relaxed and may not be one for a romantic meal but it’s a great place for groups interested in trying Japanese food for the first time. Like most of Amsterdam’s better restaurants, it’s certainly not cheap but the food is just delicious.
 Yamazato Restaurant
 Ferdinand Bolstraat 333
1072 LH Amsterdam
 The Netherlands
Email: yamazato@okura.nl
Phone: +31 (0)20 – 678 83 51

Website: yamazato.nl


Toscanini is a small but surprisingly spacious Italian restaurant situated in Jordaan. In our opinion, it’s very rare to find a bad Italian restaurant but Toscanini delivered a really tasty meal and although we didn’t try the six course menu for €44.50, it looked like extremely good value. The service is pretty decent and staff are polite enough but ‘service with a smile’ didn’t seem to be their motto…
 Restaurant Toscanini 
Lindengracht 75
1015 KD Amsterdam
 The Netherlands
Email: toscanini@toscanini.nu
Phone: +31 (0) 20 623 28 13
Website: diningcity.nl/toscanini/

D’Vijff Vlieghen

Dutch cuisine isn’t one of those romanticised around the world but Dutch food is in our view one of the very best and D’Vijff Vlieghen is up there as one of the best restaurants in Amsterdam. The restaurant was opened in 1939 and has that classic Dutch feel. It’s a must for new visitors to Amsterdam with it’s fantastic atmosphere and excellent food.
D’Vijff Vlieghen
 Spuistraat 294-302
1012 VX Amsterdam
 The Netherlands
Email: vijffvlieghen@nh-hotels.com
Phone: +31 (0) 20 530 40 60
Website: http://www.thefiveflies.com/en/

De Belhamel

Restaurant De Belhamel’s decor gives this small but unique restaurant an extremely glamourous feel and the food matches the look. This restaurant specialises in French and Italian cuisine and is always served at an extremely high standard. De Belhamel is perfect for that romantic evening for two.
 Restaurant De Belhamel
 Brouwersgracht 60
1013 GX Amsterdam
 The Netherlands
Email: debelhamel@diningcity.com

Phone: +31 (0) 20 6221095
Website: belhamel.nl/

Van Puffelen

Café Van Puffelen is a vibrant restaurant with fair prices making it a great place for a lunch or early evening dinner. Their food isn’t mind blowing but then you are not paying over the odds for food, perfect if you are looking for a relaxed lunch or dinner without breaking the bank
Café Van Puffelen
 Prinsengracht 377
 The Netherlands
Email: vanpuffelen@diningcity.com
Phone: +31 (0) 20 6246270
Website: diningcity.com/ams/vanpuffelen/nl/

The Pancake Bakery

The Pancake Bakery is loved by tourists and locals. Everyone seems to love pancakes and The Pancake Bakery sees many a queue especially during the lunch and dinner periods. The pancakes are just sublime but also don’t come cheap so don’t expect a bargain here.
Address: The Pancake Bakery
 Prinsengracht 191
1015 DS Amsterdam
 The Netherlands
Phone: +31 (0) 020 625 13 33
Website: pancake.nl

Café de Jaren

Café de Jaren is a casual and spacious restaurant which has a beautiful terrace overlooking the canal. The food isn’t necessarily cheap for lunch or dinner but is one of the livelier bar/restaurants in Amsterdam.
 Café de Jaren
Nieuwe Doelenstraat 20-22
1012 CP
 The Netherlands
Phone: +31 020 62 55 771
Website: diningcity.nl/cafedejaren/


Authentic Indonesian food, good service and beautiful decor at the Orient contribute to an excellent dinig experience. If you order the rijs taffel, you would be treated to a good variety of Indonesian dishes. The food can get a tad spicy for those with delicate palettes, but that’s the price you pay for authenticity.
Address: Van Baerlestraat 21, Zuid, Amsterdam.
Phone: +31 (0)20 6620856


Hip, trendy and cool clientele – Supperclub is the place to be seen at. There are no tables or chairs in this restaurant, instead you can enjoy your food in soft white beds to the accompaniment of great music and the occasional performance. The food comes in small portions, and is somewhat overpriced, but then you are not paying for the food, but the “experience”.
Minimum fixed menu price :€ 65,00
Address: Jonge Roelensteeg 21, Dam, Amsterdam,
Phone: +31 (0)20 3446400

Adis Ababa

A colorful Ethiopian restaurant, Adis Ababa is as authentic as they come. You can expect to share your food in a large plate at the middle of the table, in true Ethiopian style. They even have Ethiopian beers to go with it. The food is excellent, reasonably priced and comes with friendly service.
Avg. price 3 courses à la carte :€ 15,00 Minimum fixed menu price :€ 7,50
Address: Addis Ababa, Overtoom 337, Amsterdam
Phone: +31 (0)20 618 44 72

Sal Gorda

Excellent Spanish food, served in a casual, relaxed setting. Order the tapas, drink some sangria and enjoy the colorful decor, all with Spanish music playing in the background and you might be forgiven for thinking that you are actually in Spain. The staff are friendly and helpful, and would even explain the menu in English.
Avg. price 3 courses à la carte:€ 14,00
Address: Van Breestraat 107a, Zuid, Amsterdam
Phone: +31 (0)20 6730877

Pancake Factory

Dutch cuisine is, in general, not something you should look forward to eating. Even in Amsterdam. But, if you insist on trying out Dutch food, head out to Pancake factory in Leidseplein for delicious sweet and savoury pancakes at reasonable prices.
Avg. price: € 10 – 15
Address: Prinsengracht 191, Amsterdam.
Phone: +31 (0)20 251333

Dine with the Dutch

Even though it is not a restaurant in the conventional sense of the word, Dine with the Dutch still makes it to our top ten list, for the unique experience it offers. It is a service that matches you to one of the special selected host Amsterdam families, based on your individual preferences, so that you can enjoy a nice meal while enjoying the warm hospitality of a Dutch family Avg. price:€ 50


A good Indian restaurant, conveniently located between Leidseplein and the Rijksmuseum. Authentic North Indian food, served in good ambience by friendly (but slow) staff. You can even watch the Chef preparing your order, through a glass window, to give you the feel of an Indian open street restaurant.
Avg. price 3 courses à la carte :€ 20,00 Minimum fixed menu price :€ 18,00
Address: Korte Leidsedwarsstraat 203, Leidseplein, Amsterdam,
Phone: +31 (0)20 6270207


Good food served in true Italian style, tucked away in Oud Zuid, far away from regular tourist haunts, is the place where “old southern Europe and old southern Amsterdam merge”. The service can be a bit slow, but the staff are very friendly and usually have very good wine recommendations to go with your food.
Avg. price 3 courses à la carte: € 39,50 Minimum fixed menu price: € 32,50
Address: Johannes Verhulststraat 104, Zuid, Amsterdam.
Phone: +31 (0)20 3795900

Ciel Bleu

If you would like to enjoy some haute cuisine, while enjoying a breath-taking view of Amsterdam, head out to the Ciel Bleu restaurant in Hotel Okura. With elegant decor and excellent and innovative French cuisine, Ciel Bleu is the place to head out for a special dinner.
Minimum fixed menu price: € 67,50
Address: Ferdinand Bolstraat 333, De Pijp, Amsterdam.
Phone: +31 (0)20 6787450

La Favola

Excellent Italian food, in a casual, restrained setting. It is authentic, no frills Italian cuisine served with a laid back Southern European attitude. The restaurant is packed, even on weekday nights, so remember to reserve early.
Avg. price 3 courses à la carte € 27,50
Address: Amstelveenseweg 143, Zuid, Amsterdam.
Phone: +31 (0)20 6796641

Amsterdam Coffee shops

Amsterdam Coffee shops

For a massive number of years, Amsterdam has been seen as a cultural haven for a great deal of men and women, for a quite significant and differing number of factors. Too as the historical aspects of the city, the classic architecture along with the museums, Amsterdam has turn into well recognized for its coffee shop culture. Amsterdam coffee shops have 1 marked distinction from British coffee shops, and those in other locations in Europe, in that they condone the use of cannabis and actively encourage it. The drug is sold inside the significant majority of coffee shops throughout the city, and buyers from all over the world are discovered in them, enjoying the relaxed atmosphere and entirely legal use of the drug. Amsterdam has hundreds of coffee shops, for tourists and locals alike, and ten of the most well-known ones are profiled here.

There are a significant number of coffee shops inside the Leidseplein region, 1 of which is the Rookies, a social venue which is well-known with tourists and expats. Rookies can be a quite well-known venue, largely on account of the truth that it really is combined having a hotel. It really is discovered inside the tourist region, and consists of a quite significant smoking lounge. One more coffee shop in this region is The Dolphins, which despite the fact that not selling cannabis anymore is friendly towards the use of it. The Dolphins, on the outskirts of Leidseplein, also provides free of charge Wi-Fi for all clients.

For a different kind of venue, visitors could head off the tourist trail and visit Mellow Yellow, which was the first coffee shop to be established in the city. The coffee shop is described as being laid back, with a seventies feel and music playing most of the time. It is located at Vijzelgracht 33. Also on Vijzelgracht, at number 47, is the Little Coffee Shop, which is found underneath the city in a basement. Being similarly off the tourist trail, visitors are informed that the establishment offers cannabis at a very cheap price, but that there will be fewer tourists than in other places.

The tourist area in Amsterdam spreads over a very wide area, and coffee shops will be found on every corner. In Jordaan, on Elandsgracht 3, there is a very small coffee shop that is called Johnny’s. Another popular coffee shop can be found in Jonge Roelensteeg. Abraxas is a very large venue, famous for its hippy style of décor and the fact that there are two found in the centre of the city. The interior of the coffee shop is full of brightly coloured mosaics and comfortable sofas, where tourists enjoy relaxing to music. For a coffee shop that offers internet, a bar and a pool table, as well as all the usual benefits, tourists should head to the Get Down To It coffee shop on Korte Leidsedwarsstraat. Closer to the station in the centre of the city, on Haalemmerstratt 44, is the Pinkfloyd. This popular coffee shop is warm and friendly, also offering the internet, and has a strong musical culture, with lively music playing all the time.

One coffee shop that is more like a café, in that it still permits cannabis smoking but in a generally less extreme manner, is found on the Jan Van Der Heijdenstraat. The Yoyo has been called the most unique coffee shop in the city, as well as being described as being extremely welcoming and friendly.

A very popular tourist area, possibly the highlight of the city, is Dam Square, and a number of coffee shops and hotels are located here. One coffee shop, called Choice Exact, is found just off the Square, on a busy and popular tourist street. Choice Exact is an old fashioned, retro style coffee shop, which offers pool tables and the chance to play table football.

Most of those travelling in Amsterdam will need to find suitable hotel accommodation before they set off on their holiday. A good hotel for a weekend visit to the city is the two star Hotel de Gerstekorrel, which is found on Damstraat 22-24, right in between the Red Light District and the historic centre of old Amsterdam. The hotel offers rooms very cheaply, and promises to give a good feel for the traditional aspect of the city. Another option is the cheap and cheerful Travel Hotel Amsterdam, which has a 24-hour bar and is recommended for the younger visitors to the city. It is found close to the Red Light District and the clubbing area of Amsterdam, at Beursstraat 23.

Amnesia – Formerly known as Whootsie Tootsie, this is one of the better coffeeshops in Amsterdam with comfortable leather armchairs and mellow and cosy atmosphere. A good selection of organically grown pot including Bio Sage and Amnesia Haze. Location: Herengracht 133, 1015 BG Amsterdam (tel: 020-4277874).

Basjoe – Nice little shop with a good menu and jazz music. Lot of regulars. The staff is friendly, the smoothies are excellent and they even have table service. Good for for long-time smokers and amateurs alike. Location: Kloveniersburgwal 62, 1012 CX Amsterdam (tel: 020-6273858).

Siberie – Attractively decorated with comfy chairs and delightful artworks on the wall Siberie is located on the banks of a quiet canal, providing a great place to hangout and relax. Spacious benches and tables accommodate groups and individiuals. Be sure to stroll along the photogenic Brouwersgracht before your smoke to enjoy the nice stroll. Location: Brouwersgracht 11, 1015 GA Amsterdam (tel: 020-6235909).

Abraxas – Tucked away in an alley just a block from the Dam square, Abraxas has evolved from a small coffeeshop to one of the best tourist-friendly coffeeshops in Amsterdam. Can accomodate large groups. Great music with the DJ or dealer picking a wide range of groovy tunes. Location: Jonge Rollensteeg 12-14, 1012PL Amsterdam (tel: 020-6255763).

The Bulldog – Most probably the most well known coffeshop in Amsterdam thanks to the central location at Leidseplein, The Bulldog is actually a chain of Bulldogs scattered around the city. The original Bulldog was established in 1978, though the current ones are very touristic. Location: Leidseplein 17, 1017 PS Amsterdam, (tel: 020-6271908).

Grey Area – Small shop with a great reputation. Started by two Americans, this joint supposedly carries ‘the finest weed anywhere in the known universe’. Packed with tourists and locals alike. Location: Oude Leliestraat 2, 1015 AW Amsterdam (tel: 020 4204301).

De Ooievaar – Considered as the smallest proeflokaal (test room) in Netherlands, De Ooievaar is the proeflokaal of the ‘A.van Wees distillery de Ooievaar’ distillery, advertised as ‘the last authentic distillery left in Amsterdam’. Very limited selection but nice setting. Location: Sint Olofspoort 1, 1012 AJ amsterdam (tel: 020-4208004).

Rusland – Rusland was supposedly the first coffeeshop in Amsterdam. Multi-levelled place with great outside terrace. Good selection of hash and grass. Friendly staff and an overall nice place to hangout. Location: Rusland 16, 1012 CL Amsterdam (tel: 020-6279468).

Bluebird – Popular coffeeshop, known for its collection of hashish and marijuana. Can get very corwded. Location: St. Antoniesbreestraat 71, 1011 HB Amsterdam (tel: 020-6225232).

De Dampkring – Popular coffeeshop, got great publicity when it was featured in the Hollywood movie Ocean’s Twelve. Small place, soft music and always packed. Beautifully decorated with a good cannabis menu. Location: Handboogstraat 29, 1012 XM Amsterdam (tel: 020-6380705).

Amsterdam Museums

Amsterdam Museums

When you are in Amsterdam the museums are definitely worth visiting. We have 51 museums in Amsterdam and they are unique in its kind. We are extremely proud and I would like to share it with you.
I will show you a few Amsterdam Museums, so that you can get an idea how beautiful they are.

The Rijksmuseum is the largest museum in the Netherlands, the basis of which was laid at the beginning of the nineteenth century. With more than a million visitors each year, the Rijksmuseum is a popular Amsterdam landmark and possesses an unrivalled collection of Dutch art, from early religious works to the masterpieces of the Golden Age.

Van Gogh Museum
The Van Gogh Museum has the world’s largest collection of works by Vincent Van Gogh. The collection includes more than 200 paintings, 500 sketches, 700 letters and his collection of Japanese prints. The museum’s collection is divided into three sections – the Van Gogh collection, work from other artists and the collection concerning the Van Gogh Museum’s history.

Amsterdams Historisch Museum
The city’s historical museum, the AHM is a great journey back in time. It has an overview of the history of Amsterdam from the thirtheenth century to the present using archeological finds, models, silver and gold exhibits, glass, earthenware and porcelain. Many splendid items from the 17th and 18th centuries are also on view.

Stedelijk Museum
Amsterdam’s municipal museum of modern art, the Stedelijk Museum houses the civic collection of modern art and stages contemporary art exhibitions. Its large collection includes international painting and sculptures, graphics and drawings, applied art, industrial design, posters and photos. Major works include those by Malevich, Picasso, Mondriaan, De Kooning and Rietveld.A sculpture garden can also be found behind the building.

Anne Frank House
The Anne Frank House on the Prinsengracht in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, is a museum dedicated to the Jewish girl Anne Frank, who kept a diary while she and her family hid from Nazi persecution. A number of exhibitions give an impression of the life of Anne Frank, in which the diary takes a central role. Temporary exhibitions demand consideration of racism, anti-semitism and the tragedies that have happened to the human race. The original of the diary is also on display as part of the Anne Frank House’s permanent exhibition.

Rembrandt House Museum
The Rembrandt House Museum is a 17th century house, which used to be residence of famous Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn. The house – both its exterior as well as interior – are preserved exactly the way they were when he lived here three centuries ago. The rooms of the also house several paintings by Rembrandt’s contemporaries, his pupils and his teacher Pieter Lastman. The new wing of the museum houses a virtually complete overview of Rembrandt’s graphical work. In addition to the permanent collection, the museum presents changing exhibitions which highlight, directly or indirectly, certain aspects of Rembrandt’s work.

Our Lord in the Attic Museum
Our Lord in the Attic, also known as Amstelkring Museum is ‘hidden church’ in a canal house in the middle of the red-light district. This is a Catholic church hidden into the upper stories of a house built in 1663, when Catholics were persecuted and had to disguise their churches.The lower floors of the building became a museum in 1888 and today contain refurbished rooms, as well as a collection of church silver, religious artefacts and paintings. It’s a beautiful place to visit, and amazing to see how they fit worshippers, an organ, and an altar into such a narrow place.

Allard Pierson Museum
Allard Pierson Museum is Amsterdam’s the only specialist archaeological collection. Owned by the University of Amsterdam, the museum houses Egyptian, Greek, Cypriot, Roman, Etruscan and Coptic artefacts as well as prehistoric finds from across Europe.

Nederlands Scheepvaart Museum
The maritime museum of Netherlands, known as Nederlands Scheepvaart Museum, boasts the the largest collection of boats in the world. It contains including more than 500 replicas of authentic ships, dozens of charts, navigation instruments, weapons, flags and paintings, especially from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and gives a chronological view of Dutch naval history.

The Tropenmuseum is the largest anthropological museum in the Netherlands and contains an extensive collection of exhibits on life and work of people in the (sub)tropics. Owned by the Royal Institute for the Tropics, a foundation devoted to the study of the cultures of tropical areas around the world, the museums is famous for its realistic reconstructions of local environments. Themes featured include, among others, music and theater from the non-Western world, religions, Indonesian Textiles and the The Dutch East Indies.

Houseboat Museum
The Houseboat Museum gives you the unique chance to personally experience how exactly life is on board of a houseboat in an Amsterdam canal.

Hortus Botanicus
The Amsterdam hortus from 1638 is one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world.
In almost four centuries developed hortus from medicinal herb garden for doctors and pharmacists to a city garden, an oasis of calm in the center of the city.
In the garden are more than 4000 species of plants and trees, including medicinal plants that 300 years ago in the hortus grew.

Tourist Attractions in Amsterdam

what to see in amsterdam

As you’d expect from such a compact city there its lots to see and do and the main benefit is that if you are pushed for time you cram in some serious sight seeing. We’ve compiled our favourites from some of the absolute classic must see destinations that are brimming with history through to the down right weird and wacky.

Heineken Brewery

A major destination for a lot of tourists to the city is the historic Heineken brewery, whilst no longer the main brewery because of the sheer demand for the amber stuff it’s a great trip and holds full tours so you can take in nearly 400 years of, well, beer. At the end of the tour you get a free beer to quench your thirst as well, result!

Visit this cool website for more information – http://www.heinekenexperience.com/

Opening hours

Daily from 11.00 till 19.00 hrs.
(Last ticket sales at 17.30 hrs.)

Closed on 1 January, 30 April, 25 and 26 December. The Heineken Experience is accessible for disabled visitors. Visitors under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. According to Dutch law and Heineken policy, they do not serve alcoholic beverages to visitors under the age of 16.

Admission: 15 EUR

Children’s rates:

(age 1-15) EUR 1 for each year of the child’s age, with a maximum of EUR 12

Group prices:

(20+ persons ) are available on request

Discount cards:

I amsterdam Card (25% off) and Holland Pass (free or 20% off)

The Heineken Experience is accessible by wheelchair. Wheelchairs are available free of charge, but need to be booked 48 hours in advance via info.experience@heineken.com.

Address: Stadhouderskade 78, Amsterdam. Take tram 7, 10, 16,
24 or 25 and get off at the Heineken Experience.

Tel: + 31 (0) 20 523 9435.

The Canal Ring

From its humble beginnings the canals have been the foundation for the city and you can see why Amsterdam is called ‘The Venice of the North’. The great thing is about the canals is the accessibility as its in the heart of the old city, walk, cruise, or cycle around them and then find a café to sit down and drink in the unique atmosphere of ‘The Dam’.

There are no opening hours, its yours to visit at your leisure however hanging about late a night is probably not advisable. We have a few tips for you though:

1. The streets are cobbled and can be a toil to walk on at times so live the stilettos at home and wear some good shoes

2. Now you’ve got your foot wear sorted make sure you pack some wet weather gear, Amsterdam is famed for its changeable weather conditions

3. Traffic – from bikes that is, be aware at all times

4. Don’t get lost, use a map!

Leidesplein – Every city worth its salt has a “happening” square, where you go to take in the life and buzz of the city – for Amsterdam, that would be the Leidesplein. Relatively small, the Leidesplein more than makes up for its lack of grandeur through its vibrance and character. With lively bars and eateries around the square, as well as buskers and performers and the occasional passerby who joins in the performance, you never know what you can expect here.

National Monument – The National Monument, often made fun for its phayllic apprearance combined with proximity to the Red Light district, is, neverthless, Netherlands’ best-known memorial to its fallen of WWII. Prominently placed in the Dam Square, the monument is a fronted by two lion and has several symbolic statues in its pedestal: four males (war), a woman with child (peace), and men with dogs (resistance). The 12 urns at the rear hold earth from war cemeteries of the 11 provinces and the Dutch East Indies. The war dead are still honoured here at a ceremony every 4 May.


Amsterdam a compact metropolis that has so many redeeming qualities that will endear you to it but is still nonetheless,cramped. The perfect tonic for this is to stretch your legs and stride out at Vondelpark, the city’s most beautiful outdoor space which attracts over 10 million visitors a year. Criss-crossing canals, band stands, a spectacular rose garden, and llamas (yes I said Llamas) its the perfect place to come and blow away the cobwebs and spend a dreamy afternoon in one of our favourite parts of the city.

Address: Stadhouderskade
Museum Quarter Amsterdam
The Netherlands

Tel: 31 20 678 1 678

Dam Square

The heart of the city and home of the original tourist trap, expect to pay premium prices for food and beer. Dam Square is where the city got its name when the River Amstel was dammed up and service the small fishing village around it which was to become “Amstelredam”. Now a bustling hub and full of street entertainers, eateries, and trams there is certainly a lot to keep you entertained but has inevitable become an expensive tourist trap, one to see but not for too long.

Stedelijk Museum

If modern art is your thing, then this is the place, it’s the umber one venue in Holland and is still at the cutting edge after more than 100 years. Best known for its permanent collection the Stedelijk also prides itself on having some fantastic temporary exhibitions that change all year round, its an absolute must. Open April – Oct 11am 7pm and Nov – March 11am – 5pm.

The Stedelijk Museum is open from 28 August 2010 to 9 January 2011 with a special program: The Temporary Stedelijk.

Opening hours

tuesday – sunday: 10 am – 5 pm
thursday: 10 pm
closed on mondays
january 1, 2011: closed
museumnight 6 nov: opened

As the renovation of the building has not been completed entirely, the museum has to follow guidelines from the fire department, limiting the amount of persons that can be in the building at one time.

Entrance fees

adults: €10
dutch museumcard: free
stadspas amsterdam: €5
iamsterdam card: free
icom card: free
guggenheim museum card: free
members vereniging rembrandt: free
0 – 12 years: free
13 – 18 years, student pass, CJP: €5
schoolvisits per person: €5
family (max. 6 persons)


During the exhibition Temporary Stedelijk the library of the Stedelijk Museum at the Deccaweg location will be closed on Fridays.

Opening hours from 1st of September will be: Monday to Thursday 10 am to 5 pm. For further information visit – http://www.stedelijk.nl/en

Rijksmuseum Vincent Van Gogh

Vincent Van Gogh, a Dutch icon and arguably the most talked about artist of all time, The Rijksmuseum houses an incredible collection of the great mans work. Understandably one of the major tourist attractions in Amsterdam this spectacular angular building is open daily 10am – 5pm and is a feast for the eyes igniting the inner artist in you.

Opening hours

Museum: daily 10:00 to 18:00, Friday to 22:00
Ticket office
: daily 10:00 to 17:30, Friday to 21:30.
Shop: daily 10:00 to 17:45, Friday to 21:45.
Museum café: daily 10:00 to 17:30.
Library Museumplein 4: Monday to Friday 10:00 to 12:30 and 13:30 to 17:00
Closed 1 January

Admission fees

Adults: € 14

0-17 years: free
Members of ICOM: free

I amsterdam Card holders: free admission

Special rates
Stadspas card holders: € 7. Unfortunateley these tickets cannot be ordered online.

For school arrangements other prices apply. Please visit www.vangoghmuseum.com/educationfor more information.

There is no special rate for groups or students.

For more information visit – http://www.vangoghmuseum.nl/vgm/index.jsp?lang=en

‘Brown’ Cafés

Everybody knows that Amsterdam is famed for its liberal attitudes and nothing sums this up more than the laws on smoking cannabis in public places. Whilst not everybody’s cup of tea the unique experience of sitting in a café and looking at a menu with marijuana on it embodies the spirit of Amsterdam. Our advice would be take it easy as it might be a little stronger than when you had a puff at a party at college 10 years ago. Usually the best cafes are the cheaper, more comfy ones which invariably offer better service. Enjoy!

The Homo monument

Amsterdam is the poster boy for liberal society and has a hugely vibrant gay scene. Its also home to the Homo Monument, the first of its kind in the world dedicated to persecuted gays and lesbians commemorating not only the gays and lesbians that died at the hand of the Nazis but the ones who fought for the allies but omitted from other remembrance memorials. On a modern day footing its now an important symbol for the gay community and is the important venue for occasions such as World Aids Day.

For more info visit – http://www.homomonument.nl/indexen.htm

Prinsengracht, Amsterdam, Netherlands
020 4281070

The Hash Museum

Ok, it’s a cliché to go to Amsterdam and visit a hash museum but its got to be done. It can be found at Oudezids Achterburwal 148 and despite Police opposition for its existence you can still visit and see something completely unique to a European capital, a live indoor marijuana garden.

For more info visit – http://hashmuseum.com/

Contact details:
The Hash, Marihuana & Hemp Museum
T. +31 (0)20 624 89 26
@. info@hashmuseum.com

The Red Light District

The Red Light District know to the locals as ‘Walletjes’ which basically means where the old city walls ran is probably the most infamous place in Amsterdam and is the melting pot of Dutch liberal society. An absolute must to see even if you are with the family as the seedy undertones and explicit shows can be avoided by a stroll through this bustling area. Ironically the evening is the best time to go as it is heavily populated with tourists taking a walk on the wild side and feels safer. We’d advise to not bother during the day as the hardened pimps and dealers patrol the area looking for willing customers and is something you do not want to getting involved in.

Nuclear Sirens

Off the chart on weirdness but something which is not so much seen as heard. On the first Monday of every month the klaxons are sounded across Amsterdam at noon testing the cities nuclear early warning system, to say this is not an eery experience is an understatement.

The Anne Franck House

One of the most popular tourist attractions in town, and a poignant reminder of darker times and the enduring spirit of Anne Franck. A timeless story that is known worldwide, The Anne Frank Diaries has sold in excess of 13 million copies and the museum still has 2 of the rooms where the Franks lived during the occupation left untouched. A truly memorable and humbling experience.

For more information visit – http://www.annefrank.org/

It is often less busy in the museum at 09.00 hrs and after 18.00 hrs. You can also avoid having to queue by buying tickets online for a reserved time.

The Anne Frank House is situated in the centre of Amsterdam at Prinsengracht 263-267. It takes around 20 minutes to walk from the Central Station to the museum. Trams 13 and 17 and buses 142, 170 and 172 stop nearby, at the ‘Westermarkt’ stop.

Adults: euro 8,50
Age 10-17: euro 4,-
Age 0-9: free
Euro <26-Card: euro 4,-

The ‘I amsterdam Card’ is not valid. There is no special rate for groups or students. Payment cash or with Maestro or through Visa- or Mastercard, at the entrance.

September 15 through March 14
Daily from 9:00 am – 7:00 pm.

March 15 through September 14
Daily from 9:00 am – 9:00 pm, (Saturdays from 9:00 am – 10:00 pm).
In July and August the museum is daily open till 10:00 pm.

Last Admittance
Thirty minutes prior to closing.

Madam Tussauds Wax Museum

Amsterdam’s own version of Madam Taussads is conveniently located right in Dam Square. Apart from the world heroes, Amsterdam’s wax museums features many local celebrities, from rapper Ali B to Pricess Maxima to Anne Frank.


The wedge shaped green building that is hard to miss, is the Nemo – a museum of science and technology, perched atop the IJ-tunnel. The exhibitons itself are meant for kids, but in summer, the rooftop is converted to an artificial beach with music and drinks and nice views. The main exhibits are informational while being entertaining, and if you are travelling with young ones, this is definitely worth a visit.

Albert Cuypmarket

One of the biggest street markets in Europe, the Albert Cuyp market has over 300 stalls lining the long street in the Pijp area of Amsterdam. Stalls sell everything from fruit, vegetables, cheese, fish and spices to clothes, cosmetics and bedding. The street and market are named for Albert Cuyp, a 17th century painter. The market can get very crowded especially on Saturdays.

The Red Light District

red light district

The Red Light District in the city of Amsterdam is probably the most famous area of its kind in the entire world. The area of the city is De Wallen, although it is not well known as this, both rather by the fact that it is a Red Light District. The area is world famous for prostitution culture, which is completely legal in The Netherlands.

Prostitution in this part of the city is seen as a normal part of the culture, and the area receives a very large number of visitors every year because of this. Although Amsterdam boasts many other attractions, the city is most famous for its Red Light District, and this is the thing that attracts the majority of visitors to the country. The majority of visitors to Amsterdam and the surrounding area are young men, there to enjoy stag parties and weekends away.

The Red Light District has a number of sex workers, and they advertise by renting small, usually one roomed apartments and sitting in the windows that are directly above the public streets below. The majority of the time the windows are surrounded by red lights, hence the name that areas that are rife with prostitution are given.

The Red Light District in Amsterdam has existed since the 14th Century, although up until the last few hundred years it was better known for its distilleries than its prostitutes. The area largely catered to sailors, who wished to relax after a long time out at sea. There is a statue in the centre of the Red Light District, which holds the inscription ‘Respect sex workers all over the world’. Aside from the brothels that can be found in the Red Light District, there are a very large number of other attractions. These attractions include theatres, sex shops, and a cannabis museum.

There are a number of hotels in the area, all of which cater to the weekend visitor. The Torenzicht Hotel Amsterdam is found right in the middle of the Red Light district, and the Hotel Travel Amsterdam is also very close, on Beursstraat. Both of these hotels are very cheap and basic, with good ratings from those wanting a cheapm place to stay. Also on Beursstraat is the Terminus Hotel Amsterdam, which is slightly less basic and has a three star rating. Another option is the Hotel de Gerstekorrel, on Damstraat, which is just outside the Red Light district.

Rent a Bike

rent a bike Amsterdam

There are 820.000 people in Amsterdam and 700,000 of them have a bike.
Amsterdam is really a bicycle city and that is also logical. Previously, you could park your car anywhere you want because then parking your car was for free. Today that is different.
If you want to spend a few hours in Amsterdam you can park your car in a garage or on the canal, but I also have to mention that it’s expensive. Doesn’t sound nice, but it must be told.

Now you understand why 600,000 people have a bike.
Conclusion? Take a bike or public transport!

Where to rent a bike?


Orange bike is the place to rent a bike in Amsterdam, not only because they pay attention to safety, but also because they have many types of bicycles to choose from and competitive prices.
Orangebike also offers historic guided bicycle tours and walks through out Amsterdam. Click here for more information about the Orangebike tours. 

Rent a Bike Damstraat 

They have all kinds of bikes; from normal Holland city bikes to luxury 21-speed hybrids; touring bikes, ATB’s, tandems, children’s bikes and even scooters.
You can rent the bike as long as you like..

The longer you rent, the cheaper it becomes.
It is possible to insure the bicycles against theft.
From amsterdam centraal station you walk straight from the main entrance towards DAM-Square; at Madam TUSSAUDS you go left into the busy DAMSTRAAT, where you find us in the small alley (Pieterjacobszoondwarsstraat) on your right, halfway between DAM-Square and the first canal (Oudezijdsvoorburgwal). Click here for more information about Rent a bike damstraat

MacBike, Amsterdam

MacBike has 5 locations in the center of Amsterdam. MacBike Amsterdam Central Station East & MacBike Leidseplein are the main rental locations.
There are several bike types available – from standard bicycles with a pedal brake, -or with manual brakes and 4 gears, up to hybride bicycle with 21 gears.

A simple bicycle with pedalbrake starts at Euro 4,25 / day upon a 7 day rental.
For 24 hours, the rentals are a bit more expensive (Euro 8,50 for 24 hours, Euro 6,50 upon 2 days) – the formula is simple: the longer you keep it, the cheaper is the price per day!
MacBike also sells quality bicycle locks and waterproof coats.

How to get there: MacBike Leidseplein can be reached by tram nr. 1, 2, 5, 6, 7 and 10; (stop Leidseplein)

Beer Bars in Amsterdam

beer bars in Amsterdam

In De Wildeman – One of the best beer bars in Amsterdam, Wildeman is located at Kolksteeg 3, 1012 PT Amsterdam (tel: 020-6382348), halfway between Centraal Station and the Dam. While they specialize in Belgian and Dutch beers, if you fancy German beer, you can ask for the German beer list too. Belgian beers are usually served on the tap. The bottled beer selection is less Belgian dominated than typical Dutch bars and once can find more than 40 Dutch beers, 20 German and 10 British ones. It is a bit difficult to locate, so arm youself with a map available on their website or from Google Maps.

De Gekraakte Ketel (The Cracked Kettle) – Another great speciality beer bar, serving over 500 beers from all over the world ranging from Dutch to Norwegian and American. It specialises in beers from small independent brewers. ‘Westvleteren,’ reputed to be one of the best beers in the world, and extremely hard to come by, can be found here.
Location: Raamsteeg 3, 1012VZ Amsterdam (tel: 020-6240745).

Café Gollem – A cosy little bar with over 200, mostly Belgian beers. Gollem was one of the first specialist beer bars in Amsterdam and is located right opposite The Cracked Kettle at Raamsteeg 4, 1012 VZ Amsterdam (tel: 020-6266645). It serves an extensive range of bottled beers – Belgian, Dutch, German, Czech and British.

Café Belgique – Just a couple of minutes walking distance from In De Wildeman, Belgique is a small bar serving Belgian (as if the name did not give that out!) beers, 8 on draught and 30 in the bottle. The beer menu is very detailed and informative. Even though located in the very touristic part of Amsterdam, local often frequent the pub, a sure sign of a good place.
Location: Gravenstraat 2, 012 NM Amsterdam (tel: 020-6251974).

Der Bier Koening – Not really a bar, but rather a store/shop selling 950 different beers and 300 different beer-glasses. Stocks a good range of Dutch and Belgian beers as well as British and German. The very knowledgeable staff is always ready to help you along to that next purchase. Not really a place to stop and sample but if you know what you want or just want some souvenirs for the Amsterdam visit, a great place to drop by.
Location: Paleisstraat 125, 1012 RK Amsterdam (tel: 020-6252336).

`t Arendsnest – One of the very few bars that erve only beer from Dutch breweries. 350 different beers, not counting approximately 250 seasonal beers such as Bokbier, brewed by more than 50 breweries in different parts of the Netherlands. The owner is very knowledgeable and together with his enthusiastic staff is more than happy to provide his customers with information and recommendations.
Location: Herengracht 90, 1015 BS Amsterdam (tel: 020-4212057).

De Ooievaar – Considered as the smallest proeflokaal (test room) in Netherlands, De Ooievaar is the proeflokaal of the ‘A.van Wees distillery de Ooievaar’ distillery, advertised as ‘the last authentic distillery left in Amsterdam’. Very limited selection but nice setting.
Location: Sint Olofspoort 1, 1012 AJ amsterdam (tel: 020-4208004).

In de Olofspoort – Another proeflokaal, specialising in jenever (gin). A good range, flavoured gins (including liquorice and a salty one), aged 5 & 10 year old gins and bitters (including their own brand Olofspoortje Bitter). The beer choice itself is a bit limited. If you have not tasted a proper jenever, this is a great place to start!
Location: Nieuwebrugsteeg 13, 1012 AG Amsterdam (tel: 020-6243918).

Brouwerij t’IJ – Sure, it is a bit out of the way, but how can you pass the opportunity to have some beer in a windmill? Brouwerij t’IJ is the test of a true beer geek 🙂 To top the location, it also has unusual opening time. The most popular beer is called Columbus, a beer loosely based on Belgian strong golden ales and weighing in at 9% abv.
Location: Funenkade 7, 1018 AL Amsterdam (tel: 020-3201786)

Heineken Experience – Located at the location of the original brewery, Heineken Experience is mostly a guided tour of old brewery. After going through it, visitors get a chance to taste/sample. Well worth the entry fees 🙂
Location: Stadhouderskade 78, 1072AE Amsterdam (tel: 020-5239222).