I’ve been living in Amsterdam with my family for about 10 months now and all I have to say it this place is completely underrated. I hear a lot of people say, “Amsterdam, yeah, someday I hope to go.” People, put this at the top of your travel list!
Amsterdam is kid friendly, romantic, active, beautiful, delicious and fun. There is something for everyone. That being said, here is my personal list of Amsterdam Musts:
1. Boat ride on the canals: There are a ton of options for canal tours. The Pancake boat tour, candlelight boat tour, history boat tour, paddle boat tour. We have done several and can’t recommend this activity enough. There is just something about seeing the city from the water. There are many frequent and affordable options. You can even rent your own boat! Google what option you think is best for you!
2. Museums! The Netherlands love museums. There is truly a museum for everything! There is the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum,Cheese Museum, Tulip Museum, Museum of Bags and Purses, Nemo Science Museum,Ship Museum, Amsterdam Museum, (Yes, we have done all of these! Plus there are a ton more we are waiting to check off!)
3. Tulips: Okay, when I say everyone on this planet needs to come to Holland in the spring I’m not even exaggerating. It is one of the most incredible sights I have EVER seen. I honestly cried when I saw the tulip fields. You can experience the tulips two ways: 1. The Keukenhoff Gardens (Ticketed garden) or walk/bike through the nearby tulip fields. Both are experiences not to be missed.
4. Bike through the canals: There are a ton of bike rental options. Ask your hotel if they have a deal with any companies. There is really something to be said about biking everywhere you go. Just don’t forget to lock it up when you stop somewhere!
5. Anne Frank House: Amsterdam holds so much history. It is a really humbling and unique experience to walk through the home where the Franks hid and lived for several months before being taken by the Germans. Make sure to book your tickets as far in advance as possible.
6. The Food: Van Stapele for cookies is a MUST, warm stroopwaffles are a personal fave as are the frites which can be found pretty much anywhere. Renee’s Croissants has amazing churros and chocolate–you are biking everywhere, you can afford to eat all this stuff. We love to get pizza and lasagna at Le 4 Stagioni and wander through the adorable neighborhood surrounding it. Don’t forget the herring and onions for those the adventurous!
7. Floating Flower Market: A quick stroll through the flower market is really fun–and neat to see. Make sure you look at it from the front and the back.
8. De 9 Straatjes (The 9 Streets): This is a series of canals that are not only picturesque but filled with fun shops. You can get anything from vintage scarves to designer shoes. You don’t even need to buy anything just wandering around is great.
9. The Markets: There are a ton of markets in Amsterdam. Albert Cuyp Market (located in The Pijp), is one of the most popular, (and a place to get warm stroopwaffles!)Waterloopein is the flee market and has been around for ages, Westerstraat Market is a fun frolic–then go to Winkel 43 for Dutch Apple Pie!
10. The Parks: Vondelpark is the largest and most popular park. It is really fun to bike through or take a picnic and people watch. Our favorite park is Beatrix Park. In my opinion it is more beautiful and less crowded then Vondelpark. Saraphati Park is nice and really close to the Albert Cuyp Market. Rembrandt Park is large and not too far from the City Center.
I could have easily made this list top 20 things to see in Amsterdam but I’ll let you get started with these 10! I love this city and am always amazed at how it is run, the people and cultures found here and the beauty that is pretty much everywhere.
p.s. don’t forget your umbrella!