Amsterdam is a city of organic fusion of seemingly incompatible things. An intricate canal system is combined with a well-thought-out network of bike paths. Numerous discounts and food coupons – with expensive tickets to museums and galleries. In this city, every detail clearly illustrates the fusion of Dutch accuracy with chaos and confusion. Classic pubs, markets with tulips of all possible colors, free love, and soft drugs – have updated the guide to, without exaggeration, the most charming city in Northern Europe. Summer is especially good in Amsterdam! If this guide helped to make your trip better, you can “leave a tip” and say thank you to TheTravelshots editors for the work done.
Transport in Amsterdam
A classic scheme works with the “city-dam on the Amstel” – the cheapest travel is by low-cost airlines. There are no direct flights, so take Wizz Air or Ryanair from Vilnius, Warsaw, or other cities in Poland to Eindhoven (you can easily watch for tickets for € 19.99 one way). From there, in the heart of the Dutch capital, straight to Station Amsterdam Centraal, you can drive in two ways: by bus – tickets online will be slightly cheaper, € 22.50 one way and € 38.50 for a round trip, or by train – from the airport you can take 400 or 401 bus to the station (check the timetable and prepare € 3 coins), and then enjoy the Dutch scenery, a one-way ticket will be around € 20.
The most convenient way to get from Schiphol Airport to the city center is by local train. A ticket in the machine costs € 5.30 (keep in mind that you won’t be able to pay with paper money – either with a card or with coins). Check in the Reisplanner app to see if your destination is near one of the train stations within the city.
If there is too much time, you can take a train ticket from Warsaw (from € 29, if you take it 3 months before the trip, to € 49, if you buy it before departure) or go by Ecolines-type bus (about € 100, but there are steep discounts).
You can really feel the atmosphere of the city by changing to a bike – in the “bicycle capital of Europe” everything is really tailored for them: roads, traffic lights, parking lots, parking lots and numerous rentals. For example, Green Budget Bikes offers classic Dutch bikes at quite democratic prices – € 6.5 for 3 hours and € 8 for a whole day.
In the city center, you will find a democratic Damstraat Rent-A-Bike with a good selection of bikes and discounts. If you want to signal that you are a tourist, you can use Yellow Bike (pay attention to guided tours for groups of 8-12 people Big City Bike Tour – 3 hours around the city for € 27.50, and Small City Bike Tour – 2 hours for € 22.50), Orange Bike (€ 11 per day on a regular city bike, € 43.50 for 6 days, there is also a large selection of fixes and bikes with stickers that cost a little more) or MacBike Amsterdam (a great choice for travelers with children and special city tours ).
You can find and check other rentals here and here. Do not forget that in Amsterdam a bicycle is not just a means of transportation, but a real lifestyle. Follow the road, do not forget to keep the rhythm of the movement, show the turns with your hand, and do not drive if you are not confident in your abilities. The Dutch are tough enough drivers, so if you still decide to remain a pedestrian, do not poke your head on the bike path and walk along the sidewalk.
Public transport in Amster is a tricky and confusing system. For starters, remember that urban transport travels under the GVB logo and includes 16 tram lines, 4 metro lines, more than 50 bus routes, and free ferries. Each office has its own tickets, so be especially careful: the fine for travel without a ticket is about € 40.
The most obvious is a tourist ticket for an hour (€ 3, can be bought from a driver or a conductor), for 1 (€ 7.50), 2 (€ 12.50), 3 (€ 17.50), 4 (€ 22.50 ), 5 (€ 27.50), 6 (€ 31.50) days or a full week (€ 34.50). You can easily find them at Tickets & Info kiosks, ticket offices, and automatic machines at stations. If you plan to stay in Amsterdam for a long time, the ideal option is the reusable OV-chipkaart (look for machines with the corresponding inscription). The card itself costs € 7.50, but to drive on it, you have to throw some money – plus another € 20 for train travel and € 4 for public transport. The balance, fortunately, can be replenished, so the “ticket” will serve you for several years. As a result, all the pulp in the check-in / check-out system: put the card to the device when you enter and exit the transport – this way you pay exactly for the distance you have traveled. on the site.
It will not be so easy to catch a taxon in the center of Amsterdam – either call or order online, or look for special parking lots (there are about 50 of them in the city). You can recognize an Amsterdam taxi without a checker – all taxi drivers have their cars decorated with bright blue numbers (instead of the traditional yellow ones). Keep in mind that the car will not accelerate much along narrow streets, the minimum cost of the trip is € 7.50, and the average fare per kilometer is € 2.10.
Accommodation In Amsterdam
Renting a house in Amsterdam is fantastic, so start your search with Couchsurfing.
If you want comfort and privacy, go to the standard search through Booking.com and airbnb.com. Look for locations near the center, so it will be easier to get to the main must-see of the city. You will pay more for overnight stays, but you will save on transport.
If you are going to hum and explore Amsterdam “from the inside” – bukay hostel White Tulip (Warmoesstraat, 87). You will find yourself in the notorious red-light district with Dam Square and the central station nearby. Don’t be surprised by the noise and use the bonuses – at the Slaínte Irish pub downstairs, guests are given a 20% discount. For a night for two, you will pay € 60.
If the distance is still not a problem and you want to cycle more in a less touristy location, choose WOW Amsterdam (Wiltzanghlaan, 60). Bright interior, art exhibitions, and relaxation on the terrace – the owners position the hostel as a temporary home for creative explorers of art and urban space.
You can stay at The Student Hotel Amsterdam West (Jan van Galenstraat, 335) – large, bright rooms, convenient location, and a building resembling a student campus. A double room will cost € 100 per night, there is a nice cafe-dining room, a gym, billiards, and a library.
Stop at Cocomama (Westeinde, 18) and calmly tell your friends that you slept in a former Amsterdam brothel that two Dutch women have turned into a trendy hostel. The cheapest bed will cost € 40, and for a room, with more privacy, you will pay somewhere around € 120.
If you care about the environment, go to Bicycle Amsterdam (Van Ostadestraat, 123), the hotel recycles and uses solar energy, here you will definitely have someone to talk to about modern eco-technologies. Simple single, double, or computer rooms, bike rental, Dutch breakfast – everything is modest but tasteful.
If living on the water was your old dream, pay attention to houseboats – small but cozy boats have everything you need, you can have a party or a romantic weekend. Look at Airbnb.com – on average, you will give € 45 per night for two in a budget boat, and you want to relax in a big way – Czekaj hotels on the water in the center with wi-fi and a rich finish.
Q-Factory (Atlantisplein, 1) . Newly opened 3-star hippie hotel housed in a former industrial building that now houses the local “music factory” – rehearsal rooms, recording studios, lecture halls, and a performance area. There is a nice cafe on the ground floor.
Places to Visit in Amsterdam
When planning your trip to the Dutch “city of sin”, remember that all roads lead to the central Dam square. From here you will not only get to anywhere in the capital, but you will also be able to estimate the size of the National Monument, erected in memory of the victims of the Second World War, look into the Royal Palace – one of the three residences of monarchs, where you will see antique furniture and canvases by Dutch masters, including Rembrandt, go to the Nieuwerkerk or the New Church of the 15th century, where coronations and royal weddings used to take place, and now exhibitions and concerts of organ music are held, and hang out in a branch of the famous Madame Tussauds.
Several hundred kilometers of branched canals, numerous bridges, and islands – the geography of the “Venice of the North” is not so easy to understand, but there are only four main canals: Singel, Herengracht, Keizersgracht, and Prinsengracht. They form the famous canal ring that has been around the historic city center since the 17th century. Amsterdam’s Canal System is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, so take a boat ride to enjoy the view of the city. The companies that offer excursions are dark, so just type canal tours or boat tours into your search engine (average price € 13-15). Find the cheapest tours from Rederij P. Kooij near Dam Square (€ 10.50 per person). Alternatively, you can opt for an evening cruise from Amsterdam Canal Cruises or take a trip from blue Boat Company – tickets online will be cheaper. An hour or a day trip, a romantic evening or a gastronomic tour – the offers of Tours & Tickets are quite varied. Check out the alternative tours from St. Nicolaas Boat Club – they use historic municipal boats and you can ride a simple iron boat that used to transport corn or bricks many years ago. There are volunteers working there, so leave a tip of around € 10. By the way, if you want to know about the structure of waterways and their place in the history of the city, take a look at the Canal Museum.
The coolest boat trip will, of course, be on a separate boat that will take you along the most winding canals of Amster. Fortunately, in Amsterdam, small electric boats are allowed to be filmed without a captain, since they do not accelerate much and are easy enough to control. In Mokum boats, an iron boat for 8 people can be borrowed for 3 hours for € 90-110 and picked up at three central points. The Boaty company will delight you with lower prices – 3 hours on their boat will cost you from € 80 to € 100. The only negative – boats from Boaty can be picked up only in one place in the south of Amsterdam. Do not forget to go to the supermarket before the cruise and grab various snacks and drinks – it is allowed to take food and even light alcohol on the boats.
If you want the same experience, but for little money, get on a catamaran with your friends (maximum – 4 people). You will have to twist the pedals, but you will not overpay either (hour – € 8, 3 hours – € 24).
Only the lazy do not know the red and white letters I Amsterdam on the Museumplein – the place is quite mainstream. And it is here that the three main museums of the city are located.
The State Museum Rijksmuseum (Museumstraat, 1) with the largest collection of Dutch art, although time-consuming, is definitely worth a visit. The golden age of Dutch painting in all its glory, and in the center of the exposition is Rembrandt’s “Night Watch”. € 17.50 entry fee.
At the Van Gogh Museum (Paulus Potterstraat, 7) for € 17, you can learn in detail about the life and work of the artist, see the famous “Sunflowers”, “Potato Eaters” and “Wheat Field with Crows”. In addition, here you will find a collection of works by the master’s contemporaries: Gauguin, Toulouse-Lautrec, Signac, and others. If you are a lover of 19th-century art, feel free to add the museum to your to-do list.
The City Museum of Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum (Museumplein, 10), has collected paintings from all known areas of contemporary art, from modernism and the Style group to pop and video art. It makes no sense to list the artists, just go and check (depending on the season € 15-20 for an adult ticket and € 7.50-10 for a student ticket).
An important life hack for those who plan to visit more than one or even two museums in Amsterdam. The City Card gives its owner free admission to the most popular museums in the city, free travel on all public transport, an hour cruise through the canals, and discounts on other entertainment services (concerts, bike rental, and even boats). Choose a City Card for a day (€ 55), two (€ 65), three (€ 75) or four (€ 85) and be sure to check the list of available services to take full advantage of it. Order your card online before your trip, and upon arrival, pick it up at the airport or central station. If you stay in the Dutch capital for a long period, it makes sense to buy the Museum Card (€ 59.90), which guarantees free admission to all museums in the city for a whole year.
Do not be shy and openly admit that people go to the city of free love, if not “try”, then at least “look” – and go to the red light district. De Wallen is the largest network of alleyways with red-lit rooms. After wandering around, you will find sex workers of all ages and physiques and even transvestites – their windows are usually illuminated with purple lamps. Don’t be shy – here the priestesses of love have IP status, so everything is legal, and the area itself is considered one of the safest in the city. Consider only that it is forbidden to take pictures of people in shop windows, and this is closely monitored. In addition, the red light district is not only brothels but also several other interesting spots.
You can look at the performance at the Casa Rosso sex theater (Oudezijds Achterburgwal, 106/108) (entrance – € 40-50), learn everything about the ancient profession at the Red Light Secrets Museum of Prostitution (Oudezijds Achterburgwal, 60), go to the Marijuana Museum and hemp (Oudezijds Achterburgwal, 148) or the Erotic Museum (Oudezijds Achterburgwal, 54) (inside – a detailed history of De Wallen, old erotic photos and lithographs, as well as a machine with fancy condoms).
Maintaining the spirit of freedom and permissiveness, go to the extraordinary, but no less alluring Sex Museum (Damrak, 18). Erotic objects from different cultures and eras, numerous installations, and well-thought-out navigation – the creators have provided everything for you to be impressed.
Set yourself up a little quest and try to find the world’s first and only monument to a prostitute. Hint – it is located near the oldest building in Amsterdam – Oude Kerk (Old Church), which is located in the center of the red light district. The Monument to the Priestesses of Love was erected in 2007 and has since called on Amsterdammers and tourists to respect sex workers around the world. Walking around the old church, look at your feet, otherwise, you will step on a golden chest, which is carefully held by a golden hand. This bas-relief in paving stones dates back to the 90s. established by an anonymous author, and now the golden bust pleases tourists, who usually find it very accidentally.
Chinatown is located next to the red light district. On the small streets of Zeedijk and Geldersekade, lovers of everything oriental will find many shops and restaurants with an appropriate atmosphere. Special attention should be paid to He Hua Temple (Zeedijk, 106-118) – the largest Buddhist temple in Europe. You can get inside on all days except Monday. If you find yourself in the city in winter, check the date of the Chinese New Year – on a holiday, the quarter is filled with indescribable colors.
You can also arrange a thematic walk in the old Jewish quarter of Jodenbuyurt – until 1940, more than 150 thousand Jews lived in Amsterdam, the city was even called the second Jerusalem. Here you will find the Jewish Historical Museum (Nieuwe Amstelstraat, 1), the operating Portuguese synagogue (Mr. Visserplein, 3), inside which, as in the old days, candles are burning, and the benches are over 300 years old, and the Holocaust memorial (Plantage Middenlaan, 24) in the former building of the Jewish Theater, where during the war the Jews were waiting for the departure to Westerbork. All locations can be accessed with one ticket for € 15.
At one time, Rembrandt, when he bought a house on the Jodenbreestraat in 1639, saw about the same cityscape that is opening now. Now it is the Rembrandt House Museum (Jodenbreestraat, 4), which began work over a century ago. The inventory of the property sold at auction during the artist’s bankruptcy made it possible to recreate the historical setting of the kitchen, workshop, and living rooms. You can admire the collection of prints and learn how Rembrandt made etchings – exactly 260 of them are kept in the museum.
The “Shelter” deserves special attention – the Anne Frank house-museum (Prinsengracht, 267), where the girl’s family hid for two years during the Nazi occupation. Details of the interior and everyday life have been recreated in the building, and the very ” Diary of Anne Frank ” is kept. To avoid the line, take your ticket (€ 9) in advance, and grab a free program in the lobby – it will tell you the history of this tragically famous place.
The rich cultural program will be supplemented by a ferry ride – go to the river Ei. You need an entrance to the left of the main doors of Central Station – you will go through the entire station and emerge just at the “stop”. There are three routes. You can admire Amsterdam and the port from the water as you drive for an hour and a half towards NDSM Werf, a creative self-made city that grew up on the grounds of a former shipyard. There are a huge number of creative locations with the help of which NDSM members create an innovative cultural environment. Or choose Buiksloterweg – in just 10 minutes you will find yourself on the other side, in North Amsterdam. The main interest here is the Eye Film Institute (IJpromenade, 1)– a huge cinema complex, where there is an archive and a cinema museum, thematic exhibitions are held, there are cinemas, a shop and a bar-restaurant. Wander around the first floor and you’ll find small booths with personal headphones and a free movie collection. There is no particular point in taking a course to Ijplein – the ferry is heading to the sleeping areas, and you will only see if something is hiding behind the facade of the well-being of the European capital. The departure point of this route has recently been moved to the eastern part of the station.
In the Science Museum of the Netherlands NEMO (Oosterdok, 2), you can learn about the structure of the universe and the world of technology – for this, the center’s staff make all the exhibits interactive, conduct lectures and presentations. The creators expect to popularize science among the smallest.
Trends in documentary, fashion or art photography, exhibitions of works by both the notorious Richard Avedon and Henri Cartier-Bresson, as well as by less prominent authors – if photography is more than just a pretty picture for you, go to FOAM (Keizersgracht, 609) , the most famous photo museum in Amsterdam. Bonus options: Foam Edition gallery, library and cafe. In addition to this, the museum publishes an expensive, but wildly cool magazine three times a year. You will pay € 10 at the entrance.
In search of documentary photographs, it is worth stopping by the Huis Marseille Museum (Keizersgracht, 401) – the oldest photography museum in the Netherlands. The 17th-century building has 13 exhibition halls and a room restored in the style of Louis XIV. Check the program of the exhibition, you can run into something worthwhile.
Bag lovers will find their paradise on earth in Tassenmuseum Hendrikje (Herengracht, 573) – the largest historical collection of bags and suitcases is collected here: from a men’s goat leather belt purse of the 16th century to a quilted Chanel handbag and the legendary Kelly from Hermes. In addition to the permanent exhibition, the works of young designers are exhibited, and in the museum shop, you can buy a unique bag.
Look at the city from above, have a snack, check your mail or just read – in the OBA public library (Oosterdokskade, 143), not far from the central station, you can hang out for more than one hour. Moreover, the central library of Amster is seven floors of the most interesting books and cool co-working spaces, which are available to both locals and tourists for free.
De Hallen (Hannie Dankbaar Passage, 33) is a place for those who are used to getting everything at once. Art galleries, designer shops, master classes, and a variety of markets – each hall of the former tram depot has its own creative energy. The creative space is complemented by the De Film Hallen cinema and a hall with many restaurants where you can have a good and inexpensive snack.
The Dutch love to use space to the maximum: in a relatively small area, they organized a cozy Artis zoo (Plantage Kerklaan, 38-40), where you can go with children. At the entrance, grab a brochure where you will find the locations and feeding times of some animals. There you can also ask questions to the caretaker. Additional points in favor of the educational spot are added by the planetarium, an aquarium, a zoological museum, and the world’s first microbial museum Micropia (a general ticket will cost € 27 for all visitors over 10 years old).
Snacks & Fast Food Accommodation In Amsterdam
If you are in Holland for the first time, try the traditional Dutch herring – look for street pavilions with the words ” Vis ” or ” Verse Harring “. Locals pick up the fish and, throwing their heads back, bite off piece by piece. You can use chopped herring with onions and cucumber, or broodje haring, which is a herring in a bun that looks like a hot dog. It will take € 2-3.5 for a snack.
Don’t forget about the standard eateries where you can get slice pizzas or Belgian waffles – in the red light district they are at every turn.
A fast-food notion of locals is to sell food from special vending machines, consisting of heated cells. A variety of burgers and simple snacks are offered by the chain companies Smullers and FEBO. In the city center, you can run into lines, but in some of them you can eat at night.
The world Wok to Walk franchise is also very popular in Amsterdam. For € 6–7 you get a box of delicious rice or noodles with the ingredients and sauce of your choice.
Favorite and almost traditional Dutch food is french fries. Look for the crunchiest fries on Damrak Street, a minute from the central station. It houses the Manneken Pis stall , which has been repeatedly recognized as the best French fries manufacturer in the Netherlands.
For the best falafel in town, head to Sonny (Eerste van der Helststraat, 43) . There are salads, several types of pita, hummus, and over 20 sauces to choose from. It is quite possible to eat well for € 6–8.
For the cheapest snack option, buy sandwiches and salads from the Albert Heijn supermarket chain. They are always fresh and taste good. And most importantly, they cost from € 2.5.
Cafe’s / Restraunts / Bars in Amsterdam
When planning your gastronomic tour, keep in mind that coffee shops in the city are open until 18:00, sometimes until 19:00. Amsterdam coffee lovers will not disappoint – the Dutch (and not Americans at all!) Have been leading the rating of the most avid coffee consumers for many years, drinking about 2.5 cups a day. Therefore, coffee shops in Amsterdam are always packed with visitors, especially the oldest and beloved by Amsterdammers, the Coffee Company chain , which is already 20 years old.
Cafes in Amsterdam
If it’s hard to surprise you with ordinary coffee, write down a couple of coffee shops where this drink is brewed with special reverence: Bocca, Koko Coffee & Design, Scandinavian Embassy, and Espresso Fabriek, and Bakhuys Amsterdam.
In a small but very cozy coffee shop De laatste kruimel (Langebrugsteeg, 4), everything is really swept away to the last crumb (this is how the name is translated). Each design detail has its own history – much has been done by the hands of the owners. Here you will find all kinds of pies, croissants, muffins, and waffle rolls – in short, all the sweetness of Amsterdam under one roof.
De Drie Graefjes (Eggertstraat, 1 / Rokin, 128) is a bakery with a large selection of cakes, pies, cupcakes and other goodies. All this and a sandwich, in addition, can be eaten right on the spot, at the diner. Climb the steep spiral staircase to the second floor for some rest. Prices don’t bite.
Restraunts in Amsterdam
You can order a full dinner after 16: 00-18: 00, and it makes no sense to go to many bars before 20:00. If you see a 3 by 3-meter wardrobe room outside the door, sheathed with wood and looking out onto the street with dark brown glass, go inside without hesitation – this is a brown cafe, a Dutch pub. Instead of music and dancing, there is a crowded bar, usually with a large selection of alcohol and light snacks.
You can break bread with your neighbor in the quaint gastro bar 5 & 33 (Martelaarsgracht, 5) – in a restaurant with black walls and marvelous lamps, all menu dishes are designed for 2-4 people. We advise you to pay attention to pasta with pork ribs, rack of lamb and salad with baked beets, pecans, and tarragon. You can have a hearty breakfast on average for € 8, and for a Sunday brunch, one person will cost about € 20.
Meat eaters in Amster will also be delicious. Look for the best Amster burgers near the red light district – Burger Zaken (Oude Hoogstraat, 2) offers both veal and chicken and even vegan burgers with cool additions to choose from. Together with potatoes, your lunch / dinner will cost € 10-13.
Butcher Social Club (Overhoeksplein, 1) . You can get here in three minutes by free ferry from the Central Station. The hall has a bar, table tennis, a kicker, and the menu includes juicy veal or chicken burgers for € 9-10. We recommend the excellent Benedict burger with egg.
Fish restaurant Stork (Gedempt Hamerkanaal, 201) . Housed in a renovated factory building, the place retains the spirit of true industrial. On a sunny day, take a table on the terrace – the view is simply mesmerizing. In addition to fish and seafood (it is worth trying breaded flounder fillets or seafood platter), meat and vegetarian dishes are served here.
Pho 91 (Albert Cuypstraat, 91) . A very popular Vietnamese eatery located in the local favorite area, De Pijp. People come here for the best pho soup in town (€ 12.5 – 14). The portions are gigantic, one plate is more than enough for you. The place is small and very popular: either book a table in advance, or come not during rush hour.
Bird (Zeedijk, 72-74) . Thai restaurant with a very extensive menu and XXL portions. To get here in the evening, you have to stand in line at the entrance. Soups from € 6, main courses from € 13.50. Give a 10% discount when buying food to go.
Soup en Zo (Nieuwe Spiegelstraat, 54; Jodenbreestraat, 94; van Baerlestraat 81) . If you want something hot, go to one of the establishments of this small chain. On the menu there are 6-7 soups to choose from for € 5.50-5.90 and several salads for those who want to catch up with something else. By the way, the menu on the site is updated every day.
Nam Kee (Zeedijk, 111-113 / Geldersekade, 117 / Marie Heinekenplein, 4) , which has grown from a 16-seat eatery to a decent chain of establishments and recognized in 2013 as the best Chinese restaurant in the Netherlands, is famous for large portions and Peking duck. Huge selection of oriental food, average bill – € 20-30.
A very popular brunch spot is Bakers & Roasters (Eerste Jacob van Campenstraat, 54 and Kadijksplein, 16) , which was opened by a cute gay couple – guys from Brazil and New Zealand. By combining the best of the traditional menus of the two countries, Bakers & Roasters have become a place with queues even on a weekday. The guys have grown to two outlets so far, so look for delicious brunch in the center and south of the city from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm.
If your budget allows you to try a more sophisticated dinner, go to the cozy restaurant Van Kerkwijk (Nes, 41) , a five-minute walk from the Dam. You will find a cute interior in a classic Amsterdam house, delicious Dutch-European dishes and waiters who do not hand out the menu, but read it from memory to all visitors. The average bill per person is € 30–40, and it is undoubtedly worth it.
If you want to dine with a steak or a plate of fish with a side dish, then in the colorful Piet de Leeuw (Noorderstraat, 11) , in addition to food, you will get a very authentic experience: this is a real Dutch cafe with wooden panels on the walls, a menu on a chalk board, candlesticks of the early 20th century and uncles-waiters with a dashingly curled mustache. Be ready to shell out € 17-20 for the main course, but you definitely won’t leave hungry.
Bars In Amsterdam
Do you want to be in the middle of the maddened crowd? Then head to the Chupitos Shot Bar (Zieseniskade, 25) . There are more than 50 types of drinks, and you will pay € 2.5-5 per serving. According to the owners, the visitor not only drinks a shot, but gets a special Experience. In general, check the internal clock with the wall clock – you can easily get lost for the whole evening. Payment only in cash.
In Amsterdam, they like to experiment with locations: next to the De Gooyer mill in a former bathhouse, a small brewery Brouwerij’t IJ was opened in 1985 (Funenkade, 7 / Zeeburgerpad, 55) . At the time, there were a couple of similar factories operating across the country as a reaction to beer drinkers with their discontent with the big beer companies. IJ now makes eight standard and three seasonal beers, plus limited editions. There is a pub with an outdoor terrace, and tours and tastings are regularly organized. Please note that the institution closes at 20:00.
Probably the largest stocks of different beers can be found in the Gollem bar (Raamsteeg, 4) , which is near Rembrandt Square. Gollem serves over 200 beers from around the world, including a whopping 14 cask beers that are regularly changed. The bar often hosts themed beer weeks and attracts a large audience of both tourists and locals.
Another insider place where locals hang out is the liqueur Wynand Fockink (Pijlsteeg, 31), founded in 1679 right next to Dam Square. The atmosphere in this place has not changed since the 17th century. – warm subdued light from an old chandelier, the walls are decorated with vessels with liqueurs, and chatty bartenders at the old bar are pouring liqueur for guests, of which there are more than 70 types. If your eyes run up from such a choice – feel free to tell the bartender your taste preferences (sweet, bitter, sour) and trust his experienced instinct. This liqueur house has a special rule: since the bartender pours liquor to the very edge of the tulip-shaped glass, you must first drink from your glass and only then take it from the bar. Keep an eye on the clock if you want to taste the liqueur – Wynand Fockink is open only from 3 pm to 9 pm.
Troost . Excellent local brewery with three establishments in Amsterdam (one near the center, one in the west of the city, one in the east). 0.25 liter glasses from € 2.9 to € 4.9. Only our own and super-fresh craft, which is brewed in the establishments themselves. There is an uncomplicated menu with good burgers and fries.
Taproom (Nieuwe Vijzelstraat, 1) . Cozy craft beer house near the center. About 20 varieties of draft beer (usually from small local breweries). In principle, they do not sell bottled beer. You can also have a snack here.
Helst (Eerste van der Helststraat 72) . A gastropub with a large selection of beers (over 30 taps + bottled) in the same trendy De Pijp district.
Clubs in Amsterdam
Before you start a riotous promenade through the clubs, stirring up the fun, remember that paid admission is not uncommon here. On average, you pay about € 10, but the price varies depending on the place and the particular party.
If somewhere in a free city famous, fashionable or just curious artists perform, then, most likely, in Paradiso (Weteringschans, 6-8) – the old church has turned into a huge musical space with special acoustics and stained-glass windows and can accommodate more than one and a half thousand people. It all started in the 1960s with hippies who wanted to turn a closed church into a club for leisure and entertainment.
The idea did not pass censorship, but after a while the authorities opened an entertainment center for young people here, preserving the memory of the hippie counterculture, the explosion of rock, punk, a new wave – in general, the place is truly legendary. In addition to cants, there are also ordinary discachi – especially crowded on Thursdays, when the locals climb out of their burrows to break away.
In the building of the former dairy factory, there is the Melkweg club (Lijnbaansgracht, 234a) – two concert venues are organized in an authentic interior, where musicians, theaters, cinema, media art and photo exhibitions for every taste are brought. Check events in advance: not only are there two of them every day, but tickets are also sold out very quickly.
Supperclub (Singel, 460) . Club and restaurant in an old Dutch building on the Singel Canal. Parties with the most stylish youth in Amsterdam, which are noisy even on Monday. Since the club is quite popular among the Dutch and Dutch women, the dress code, face control, as well as the queue at the entrance remain in force.
De School (Jan van Breemenstraat, 1) . An iconic site, converted from a former high school to a cafe, club, gym and gallery. It is not only one of the rare places in Amsterdam to be licensed around the clock, but also one of the best techno clubs in the city.
The local youth hangout can be found in Roest (Jacob Bontiusplaats) – almost every evening they organize performances there and very often themed parties. You can come to Roest early for dinner and a beer near the canal, which, in fine weather, is converted into a beach, covered with sand.
Go to the Palladium (Kleine Gartmanplantsoen, 7-9) for near-baroque movement – parties with music of a variety of styles are held here both during the week (until 1 am) and on weekends (until 3 am). A calm day and a wild night have been the basis of the bar’s philosophy for more than 30 years: if you can drop in here during the day for a leisurely lunch, then by nightfall the Palladium turns into a real paradise for party-goers. Pleasant: you won’t stay hungry until 23.00, and besides cocktails for € 10, there is a good selection of wine.
A light touch of glamor, inexpensive booze, a large smoking room on the second floor – Escape (Rembrandtplein, 11) often organizes special parties for students. Check the program, the place is perfect for a large company.
World-class musicians and artists come to Amsterdam every month, so before you head out, check to see if you are lucky enough to attend a cool concert. The biggest shows and hangouts are usually held at the Ziggo Dome , AFAS Live and the Amsterdam Arena . Don’t be discouraged if all the tickets from the site have already been sold out – go to ticketswap.nl , where enterprising Dutch people resell their tickets (of course, with a surcharge).
There are a lot of coffee shops in Amster, so if buying marijuana is on your personal to do list, check the most famous ones and choose what you like. Sellers will always tell you what is best to take from the menu, so don’t be shy. Keep in mind that The Bulldog , the most popular tourist chain, is the creator of the first such establishment in the city. Now the company even has its own hotels . If you are looking for privacy and coziness, choose coffee shops like Loft or Nogal Wiedes – a place away from the center and with less risk to buy crushed tea bag wrapped for tourists.
Shopping in Amsterdam
On the pedestrianized Kalverstraat , Amsterdam’s main shopping street, you will find a mass market dear to your heart: from Zara and H&M to America Today and Levi’s. Keep in mind that most shops are open almost all days until 19.00, with the exception of Thursday, when you can shop until 21.00.
For luxury brands, head to the Museum Quarter – not far from the Van Gogh Museum on PC Hooftstraat (Pieter Cornelisz Hooftstraat) there are plenty of opportunities to buy new things.
In the Nine Streets area, De Negen Straatjes (each street is named after some animal), there is everything for a calm, atmospheric shopping – a cozy quarter with a lot of shops from Dutch designers of clothes and accessories is located in the city center. In addition, here you can find interesting vintage items and gifts. A special guide will help you navigate.
To the large De Bijenkorf shopping center (Dam, 1) , which rises on the central Dam square, go for clothes from Marc Jacobs, Tommy Hilfiger and others.
Do you want a bunch of flowers? Head to the Bloemenmarkt flower market (Singel Amsterdam) , where, in addition to the symbolic tulips, they also offer other natural flowers, potted plants, seeds and bulbs. It is most beautiful in spring, but at any other time of the year the shops, even if not boats, but static premises on stilts on the canal, still create a wonderful atmosphere.
Hudson’s Bay (Rokin, 21-49) . A large Canadian department store that opened in Amsterdam in September 2017. Huge selection of brands – both luxury and more democratic. It occupies several buildings at once on the central Rokin street.
On of Albert Cuyp (Cuypstraat of Albert) , the busiest market of the Netherlands, it is necessary to go for food (some brought from Surinam, Turkey and Morocco), and trivia for home and farm. Walking through the market, try the famous Dutch slingwafers or grab a bite to eat at one of the ethnic spots scattered around.
It is absolutely imperative for all vinyl producers to visit the small Eardrum Buzz Records (Haarlemmerplein 9) store for used records. It is located under the hairdresser called Cut the crap and is open from Tuesday to Friday from 12.00 to 18.00, from 11.00 to 18.00 on Saturday and from 12.00 to 17.00 on Sunday. Here you can easily find a rare Herman’s Hermits album for a symbolic € 3 or just buy vinyl for a year in advance (prices for records start at € 1.5).
Fans of flea markets should go to Waterlooplein (Waterlooplein, 2) – watches, skates on wooden mounts, records, posters, and other entertaining old gizmos are abundant here. Open from Monday to Saturday from 9.00 to 18.00. If you’re lucky, you will find yourself at the largest flea market in Europe – the IjHalen market, which opens every three weeks and offers a huge selection of antiques, souvenirs, and vintage clothing.