What to do in Amsterdam

Activities, attractions and tours

Amsterdam Attractions

Amsterdam is a curious mix of the historic and the modern that manages, with consummate ease, to combine stately grandeur with alternative fripperies. Hire a bike or a boat to get around this attractive city in style. Stop off at any of the museums and galleries that boast iconic masterpieces from every era of art history. Next you may need to relax: you are in the right place and have a choice of the welcoming brown cafes. And, as nightfalls, visit any of the trendy restaurants before you head out to take in the pumping nightlife.

Areas & Neighborhoods in Amsterdam

Old Centre - In the medieval centre you will find traditional architecture, canals, shopping and the majority of the coffeeshops. Make sure you wander beyond Dam Square to explore the, arguably, more interesting areas of Nieuwmarkt and Spui. And, yes, this is where the Red Light District is.

The Canal Ring - This UNESCO World Heritage Site was dug in the 17th century and forms the heart of one of the city’s poshest neighbourhoods. Forget the clubs near the Red Light District and head to Leidseplein and Rembrandtplein for the best nightlife.

Jordaan - This gentrified working class area now offers art galleries, hip boutiques and trendy restaurants.

Plantage - This atmospheric 19th century district contains fascinating museums and expansive gardens to explore.

South Amsterdam - Essential city sights and activities cluster in this area, including the Museum Quarter, the picnic-friendly Vondelpark and the snooper’s paradise that is the Albert Cuyp Market.

Things to See in Amsterdam

The Van Gough Museum is only the most well-known of the fantastic art museums in Amsterdam. Make sure you also get to see the Rembrandts and the warped vision of medieval painter Bosch that can be found in the city. The historic houses leaning at jaunty angles over the canal are also a classic sight and there is also historic architecture to enjoy in the old centre and the Plantage district.

Things to Do in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is a city that is a joy to stroll around but you may want to give your feet a rest - if so, hire a bike to get around like the locals or hire a boat to cruise along the beautiful canals. Enjoy the fine dining or shoot the breeze with locals and friends in a brown cafe or a coffee house. Take a bottle of wine to the Vondelpark and kick back for a bit as you watch the Dutch skate past. The nightlife is fantastic here, especially around Leidseplein and Rembrandtplein, but don’t stay up too late because there are so many things waiting for you to do tomorrow.

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