The largest city in Holland, Amsterdam has over 3 million visitors a year. It is well-known for its world-class art museums, narrow buildings, architecture, and bike paths. Today, we will focus on top sightseeing spots and all of the cool things you can do while visiting Amsterdam.
- Go to the Anne Frank House
Situated in the heart of Amsterdam, Anne Frank House is one of the most visited sites in the city and attracts hundreds of tourists every day. This popular museum tells the story of Anne Frank and her famous diary which she wrote during the Second World War. As a part of the permanent exhibition, visitors will find some of her notebooks on display. Most of the collection at the Anne Frank House focuses on anti-Semitism, fascism, and persecution of Jews. Tickets can be bought online or at the entrance for 9 Euro.
- Have a Picnic at Vondel Park
Named after the famous Dutch poet Joost van den Vondel, Vondel Park is the largest municipal park in Amsterdam that includes several children’s playgrounds, restaurants, bars, and sculptures. It is a perfect place for a picnic, especially in summer when there are a couple of events including the Open Air Theatre, the King’s Day, and Friday Night Skate. Visitors can grab a drink at the Groot Melkhuis or dine at the upscale Vondelpark3 restaurant.
- See a Concert at the Concertgebouw
Opened in 1888, Concertgebouw is one of the most famous concert venues in the world that features performances from top-class orchestras such as the Dutch Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. If you want to listen to modern stars like Lang Lang, Sting, and Janine Jensen, you’ve come to the right place. There are also matinee performances which are usually held over the weekends. Keep in mind that tickets for events at the Concertgebouw sell out fast, so make sure to book in advance.
- Explore the Red Light District
You’ve probably heard about the Red Light District in Amsterdam and its controversial reputation of being a place where tourists, voyeurs, clerics, and prostitutes rub shoulders with each other. Yes, you will see women standing in brothel windows and everything you thought that happens here, really does. If you are in the mood for visiting strip clubs, sex museums, and coffee shops that sell brownies, make sure to pay a visit to this carnival of vice. Taking photographs of women in shops is forbidden, as well as yelling and causing disturbances.
- Rent a Bike in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is probably the most cycling-friendly city on the planet earth and it has 400 kilometers of bike paths. The good news is that renting a bike is not expensive and all of the cycle paths are safe with while clear cycle lanes. Everyone in the city uses bicycles for transportation, from business people in suits to families with young children. Some of the places where you can rent a bike are MacBike and Rent-A-Bike. Both are reliable and offer great service at budget-friendly prices.
- Visit the Flower Market
The Flower Market definitely one of those places that every tourist should visit while in Amsterdam. Also known as Bloemenmarkt, this market dates back to 1862 when local vendors came to the center of the city via the Amstel River to sell their flowers. Today, this modern flower market consists of fixed barges with glasshouses where visitors can buy some of their favorite flowers like carnations, peonies, orchids, snowdrops, and of course tulips. The market works from Monday to Saturday, and besides flowers you can also purchase typical Dutch souvenirs.
- Check out the Dam Square
Located right in the heart of the historical center of Amsterdam and just a short walk from the Centraal Station, Dam Square is full of attractions such as the Royal Palace, National Museum Statue, and Madame Tussauds. If you are hungry, there are several food stalls, bars, and restaurants here. In summer, there are a few street performers who surprise tourists with their amazing acts.
- Take a canal cruise
One of the best ways to explore Amsterdam is definitely by taking a canal cruise and explore Jordaan. There are so many canal cruises to choose from and each one offers something different. For instance, you can go on a romantic candlelight cruise, cheese and wine tour, pizza cruise, and the pancake boat tour. Check out the charming canal houses and learn about the history of Amsterdam with a licensed tour guide while having a glass of wine or over dinner. Most of these tours last from one to three hours, but make sure to book these canal cruises in advance.
- See the Body Worlds
Situated within walking distance from the Amsterdam Central Station, Body Worlds features exhibitions of over 200 human specimens and focuses on the anatomy of the body. The idea came from Gunther von Hagens who managed to preserve real human bodies by putting polyester and silicone instead of the original fat. Most of the visitors describe this permanent exhibition as an unforgettable experience and it’s no wonder that over 40 million people a year come to see it.
- Enjoy the Heineken Experience
Opened in 1991, The Heineken Experience is an interactive museum housed inside one of the Heineken’s historic breweries that features four floors of multimedia exhibits, a spectacular tasting bar, and a 4D adventure called “Brew Your Ride”. The tour usually lasts for 90 minutes and includes a walk through the factory, fun facts about the history of the company, a tasting session, and a complimentary Heineken logo. Tours are available in several languages including English, French, Chinese, Italian, Dutch, Russian, German, and Portuguese. Guests are advised to book their tickets through the official website since this is one of the city’s most visited attractions.