Amsterdam is an iconic city that has a lot to offer, to all types of visitors. It really has something for everyone, whether you’re looking for art, history, cuisine, nightlife, architecture or nature. The Netherlands are a beautiful country, and Amsterdam is a bubble: it has a unique culture, beautiful scenery and a welcoming atmosphere. So really, it is the perfect place for a memorable holiday! In this article, we will go over the best way to spend the most perfect holiday in Amsterdam with you. Get on your bike and follow us along!
Holidays: Explore the city and its architecture
Amsterdam has a very particular architecture, famous around the world. Indeed, it is known for its beautiful unique canals lined with distinctive dark brick houses, churches, and bridges, as portrayed in the picture above.
Amsterdam’s canals, which make the city famous, date back to the 17th century, the city’s Golden Age: they were constructed to make transportation easier and facilitate trade, which participated in the city’s growth and helped it prosperity.
The four main canals of Amsterdam are the Singel, Herengracht, Keizersgracht, and Prinsengracht: they are UNESCO World Heritage site. One of the best ways to experience Amsterdam is by taking a canal boat tour, having a unique perspective and seeing some of Amsterdam’s most beautiful buildings from the water.
When there are no Canals Festivals, you can also rent a bike and ride along the canals to explore the city at your own pace, which will help you get the hang of the Dutch biking experience!
The districts for your holidays in Amsterdam
Amsterdam, like any other city, is divided in several districts: some of them are more famous than others.
One of Amsterdam’s most known areas is the Red Light District: it is a unique and controversial place that attracts many visitors, centered around adult experiences such as sex shops, a vibrant nightlife and coffee shops for cannabis products, among many other things.
You can also find some calmer districts. You can for example visit and explore Jordaan: located in the heart of Amsterdam, this charming area is known for the cute cafés and trendy shops in the narrow streets.
Then, another district recommended for your Amsterdam visit is De Pijp: it is a vibrant and multicultural neighborhood, located south of the center. De Pijp will amaze you with lively street markets, restaurants, a thriving nightlife, and the beautiful Sarphatipark.
Finally, we recommend you take a stroll in Plantage. It is a peaceful area, very green, located east of the city. It has several beautiful parks, like the Hortus Botanicus botanical garden, and beautiful museums such as the Jewish Historical Museum and the Rembrandt House Museum.
Visit the museums during your holidays in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is full of museums, as it has been the scene of many major historical and cultural events in the history of Europe.
The main cultural museums
Amsterdam is home to several world-famous art museums. First, you must visit the Van Gogh Museum: it has the biggest collection of Van Gogh’s art pieces in the world! More than 200 paintings, 500 drawings, and 700 letters from Vincent.
Then, you have to get to the Rijksmuseum, which exhibits many pieces of Dutch art and culture. It has more than 1 million paintings, sculptures, decorative and historical pieces. It is home to famous works from Rembrandt and Vermeer, and the museum itself is a piece of art, since 1885.
FInally, don’t forget to visit the Stedelijk Museum. It is an iconic museum focusing on modern art. It has an impressive collection from the 20th century, and hosts works by Pollock, Warhol or Lichtenstein.
The Anne Frank House
Amsterdam, such as other European cities like Paris or Berlin, has many scars left by the Second World War. The Anne Frank Museum is located in the building where Anne and her family hid during the war.
You can visit her teenage room and be in the small place where so many people hid for so much time. You’ll also see the original famous journal: it is a moving experience, offering a powerful look at her life and the impact of the Holocaust.
How does a visit to a beer museum sound? If it sounds like you could enjoy it, then you have to get to the Heineken Experience. It is an interactive museum that offers a close look at the brewing process and the history of one of Amsterdam’s most famous beer factories.
The brewery is a historic and narrow building, as it started operating in 1867. You will be able to witness the brewing techniques and taste the beer, and even bottle your own beer!
Try all the food during your holidays in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is home to a very diverse and tasty cuisine, with influences from Dutch traditions, Asian customs, and other international flavors.
The Dutch delicacies you should try are the following:
- The Stroopwafels: these thin, crusty, and caramel-filled waffles are a traditional Dutch treat, usually eaten warm with a cup of coffee or tea.
- The Poffertjes: they are mini Dutch pancakes, sweet and fluffy, often eaten with powdered sugar and butter. Yum!
- The Bitterballen: these small fried balls filled with meat are a popular Dutch snack, often served with mustard.
- The Herring: this Dutch delicacy is a seafood lovers’ dream, typically served raw with onions and pickles.
- The Stamppot: it is a hearty Dutch dish, consisting of mashed potatoes and vegetables, served with sausage or meatballs.
- All the cheese! The Netherlands is famous for cheese, which you have to try when in Amsterdam. We particularly recommend you try Gouda, Edam, and Maasdam, they are great.
There are many other delicious foods you can try in Amsterdam, with a lot of international influences, so you’ll for sure find something that fits your taste buds.
Enjoy the parks and the outdoors
Amsterdam has several parks and outdoor hubs for you to enjoy. They are particularly beautiful when spring comes, with their flowers and birds, and are a perfect place to exercise and bike among the locals! You should particularly visit:
- Dam Square: located in the heart of Amsterdam, this square is bursting with life. It hosts several historic buildings like the Royal Palace and the National Monument.
- Vondelpark: it is a beautiful park located in Amsterdam’s center, offering a peaceful retreat from the city’s vibrant atmosphere, with its walking paths, bike trails, and outdoor cafes.
- Amsterdamse Bos: it is a large park located just outside the city. There, you can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, such as hiking, biking, and canoeing.
Take day trips
Amsterdam is a city that likes to have fun: it will offer you many options for going on an adventure! However, you can also take day trips from Amsterdam to visit some close-by sightseeing must-sees and experience more of the Netherlands.
Amsterdam is connected to several nearby cities, such as:
- The Keukenhof Gardens: this stunning park is a spring must-see, as it is home to millions of tulips and other flowers in an explosion of colors.
- The Zaanse Schans windmills: are located in a picturesque village just a short train ride from Amsterdam. The historic windmills, traditional crafts, and cheese will teach you a lot about Dutch culture and history.
- The historic city of Haarlem, with its breathtaking architecture, churches, and its museums.
- Finally, you can also get to other main Dutch cities, such as Utrecht, Rotterdam, or The Hague.
Amsterdam is a great city: both traditionally Dutch and vibrantly international, it has hidden adventures for all the visitors, whether they’re passionate about art and culture, food, nightlife, architecture or history. It is also a great base for exploring the surrounding region.
Don’t forget that with Trazler, you can book your trip to Amsterdam very easily, by booking all your tickets, accommodations and car rentals on the same webpage with the best prices. We wish you the best holiday time in Amsterdam!