Best Places To Visit in Amsterdam

Amsterdam, the city of canals and contradictions. This place is rightly called the ‘New Venice’. It is the capital and the most populous city in the Netherlands. The capital city is well known for its rich artistic culture, picturesque canal, nightlife, festival activity and narrow houses. It is divided by approximately 400 bridges and 165 canals into around 90 islands. Amsterdam is abstract, daring, mysterious, wealthy and severely mathematical. Amsterdam places to visit has so much to offer that making a comprehensive travel plan is a Hercules task, howbeit, let us look into some of the most visited and interesting places of this laid back and liberal city and help you get the best experiences in this European gem.

You could experience the most amazing social life here, but at the same time, you won’t be crestfallen if you wish to spend some alone and quiet time. The best way to get moving here is to hop on a bicycle and start riding. The locals suggest that early mornings are a good time to stroll around the streets when the city is still asleep. Amsterdam is also well known for being liberal in matters of drug and sex. It is known for its cannabis coffeehouses. And, not to forget it is the home to the world’s first Stock Exchange which was established by the Dutch East India Company in 1602.

Amsterdam is recognized as a “Venice of the North” and if you want to know the reasons behind it then you need to visit this fabulous city at least once in a lifetime. No matter from what corner of the world you are traveling to Amsterdam, the city has enough to look after cravings of different types of tourists. The city features several extraordinary sightseeing destinations within a compact distance. So you need to plan your journey judiciously to cover maximum locations within a short time. Here we have made a complete list of best places to visit in Amsterdam to make your travel convenient:

1. MUSEUMPLEIN:

The Museumplein or the Museum Square is located in the Museumkwartier neighborhood. This is the largest square and the major museums like Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum and the Van Gogh museum are located here. Yes! all in the same place. This square is also home to the Royal Concertgebouw, a famous concert hall. This place housed the famous I Amsterdam sign until it was removed in 2018.

  • Rijksmuseum– The museum has about 80 galleries and 8000 objects which tell us the story of around 800 Dutch years. It is dedicated to the rich arts and history of Amsterdam. It includes very famous masterpieces of Rembrandt and other famous Dutch masters. Some of the famous works include Milkmaid by Vermeer and Rembrandt’s Night Watch. Museums are one of the fantastic masterpieces that allow you to unravel the history of any country within a short time. Come to Rijksmuseum where you can witness several antiques and artifacts of the country that date back to old centuries. You can spot a grand library here that features a large number of manuscripts and books. In the collection, you can also discover medieval sculpture, conventional handicrafts, and unique art style. Opting for travel guides is an ideal option to know everything about this one of the extraordinary places to visit at Amsterdam.
  • Van Gogh Museum– Here, you get to witness the famous works of Vincent Van Gogh. The museum has about 200 paintings, 500 drawings and 700 of his letters. You also find many of his self-portraits works here (the very old selfies which took a lot of time and dedication to be completed 😉). Some of his famous works include masterpieces like Sunflowers and The Potato Eaters.
  • Stedelijk Museum: If you wish to witness some of the finest modern and contemporary arts and design, this is one of the must-visit tourist attractions in Amsterdam,. The main building dates back to 1895 but it was renovated extensively in 2012 and an eyecatching annex was attached to it which is known among the Amsterdammers as ‘The bathtub’ (It does resemble a giant, white bathtub).

Visiting the Museumplein will surely help you witness the rich cultural wealth of Amsterdam and its surely going to be one memorable experience.

2. ANNE FRANK HOUSE:

Anne Frank was a Jewish wartime diarist. She hid here from the Nazis during WW2 and this was the time when she wrote most of her diaries. This building is dedicated to her. It is located on a canal named as Prinsengatech, in central Amsterdam. This place gives a fascinating, sobering and haunting museum experience. A statue of Anne Frank is also situated nearby. One pro tip: This place is extremely busy at all times. There are long lines and there is a possibility that you could have to wait for hours. In order to avoid this fuss, check on the timings and book your tickets beforehand. It will require just a little planning but will save a lot of time!

3. HIENEKEN EXPERIENCE:

If you are someone who is fond of beer then you should definitely check out the Heineken Experience. You get to know everything about the brand, their history and how they bottle and manufacture their special brew. The tour costs about 18 euros and takes approximately 2 hours. Included in this price you also get 2 tokens to enjoy ice-cold beers in their bar and in addition to that, you also get another beer during the tour (sums up to be a rewarding deal!). You also have the option to print customized bottles at additional costs. This will surely be a memorable experience and no wonder it is listed amongst some of the best places to go in Amsterdam.

4. ALBERT CUYP MARKRT:

This market is regarded as the largest open-air market in Europe. If you have an eternal love for food, this place is a must-visit. Located in the heart of the De Pijp district, this market functions 6 days a week with more than 260 stalls. It offers everything from vegetables, fish and street food to shoes and luggage. If you are a street food lover, there is a lot to try here, right from the Vietnamese spring rolls to stroopwafels. I would also recommend trying Poffertjes- the mini Dutch pancakes. You could spend hours here shopping for flowers, plants, fabrics, jewelry, fine leatherware and what not.

5. VONDELPARK:

In a mood to spend a sunny afternoon in a peaceful place doing nothing but just chilling and enjoying the fresh air? Vondelpark is the place for you. This is one of the largest parks in Amsterdam and is loved by the locals as well as tourists.  A great place to spend your leisure time either skating, walking, listening to music, or just lazing around in the grass. A perfect escape from the busy city. The park contains numerous statues and sculptures including one by Pablo Picasso. Though the statue was intended to be a bird, the localities have considered it to be fish and hence it is locally known as ‘Picasso’s Fish Statue’. I would definitely recommend a visit to this one of the incredible tourist attractions of Amsterdam to spend a quiet and relaxed day.

If you are planning to explore Amsterdam visiting places for the second time then you would definitely want to visit Vondelpark on a priority basis. The park attracts thousands of foreign tourists and native travelers every day making it a most sought after place in the city. In the vicinity, you can spot several famous cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy having some refreshments. The park also features an open-air theatre and rose grade where you can spot more than 70 different species of roses. You can consider visiting this park at any time from 9 AM to 11 PM.

6. NEMO SCIENCE MUSEUM:

If you are traveling with children, make sure you pay a visit to the NEMO science center. This building shaped like a green ship has a lot to teach to the children as well as the adults. No matter where you belong to, you are sure to learn something once you visit this place. Here you can have real fun by blowing gigantic soap bubbles to watching reactions in an actual laboratory. These five floors of pure excitement can make you believe that science and technology can be captivating for all ages.

7. A’DAM LOOKOUT:
I would recommend ending one of your days at A’dam lookout which is one of the most sought after Amsterdam tourist attractions. Here you get a 360-degree view of the city and see some of its spectacular scenarios. From here, you can see Amsterdam in a whole new perspective. If you are brave enough, you could also swing out over the edge of the building. You can also enjoy a great meal and an interactive exhibition here. 

8. RED LIGHT DISTRICT:

The legendary redlight district is what Amsterdam tourism is greatly infamous for. It is called the red light district because the windows are bordered with red lights to highlight the ladies standing in there. Some windows also have blue lights indicating that the person standing behind them is a transgender. Do not film the ladies here as they literally hate it. Respect them. Although this area has a lot of sex shops and museums, this is not what it is only famous for. If you visit the area during the day you will find great shops and restaurants that offer cuisines from all over the world.  Not to forget, it has beautiful architecture as well.

If you are searching for the most vibrant places to visit when in Amsterdam then come to Red Light District. Here you can spot several bars, cafes, and pubs where you can enjoy drinks while listening to your favorite music. The Dutch Drinks is one of the highly popular and most ordered drinks and people traveling to Amsterdam from abroad come here to taste it. In the locality, you can spot some very famous cafes such as Cafe Hill Straight Blues and The Old Sailor that will make your stay truly memorable.

9. FOODHALLEN:

If you are a true foodie you will surely appreciate the Foodhallen. You won’t find just dutch food here because its internationally themed and has food from all over the world. Go with your group because there is a lot to explore here. Without any doubt, it is listed amongst the best places to visit in Amsterdam.

10. JORDAAN:

It is a district in the center of Amsterdam known for its beautiful houses and restaurants. Once a working-class neighborhood it is now an upscale location in the Netherlands. A lot of streets and canals in this area are named after trees and flowers and it is undoubtedly the most beautiful place to visit.

11. Begijnhof:

After a busy tour of Amsterdam, if you are looking for a tranquil destination where you can sit and relax then come to Begijnhof. Here you witness a series of historical buildings which is a rare sight to watch. In the vicinity, you can also consider visiting popular churches English Reformed Church and Catholic Houten Huys. It is one of the pristine gardens in Amsterdam where you can spend some peaceful time with your loved ones. You can consider visiting Begijnhof from 9 AM to 5 PM to get the best experience out of your time.

12. Canal Belt:

Your Amsterdam tour is incomplete without visiting Canal Belt. It is one of the UNESCO heritage sites and you will find it listed in every Amsterdam travel guide. It is one of the most popular destinations in the entire Netherlands where you can enjoy a city tour via the canal. While cruising through the stable waters of the canal you can discover several traveling jewels within Amsterdam which are difficult to find through any other transport medium.

  Pro tips:

  • Do not get confused between cafes and coffee shops. Cafes offer only coffee while the coffee shops are generally for smoking, coffee being secondary.
  • Always be prepared for rain. The weather here is highly unpredictable and it pretty much rains at any time of the day. You should be very well prepared for this.

What’s next waiting for you?

Although Amsterdam is known as weed connoisseur’s paradise, the city has plenty of much more to offer. The city is brimming with bridges, canals, artistic buildings and elaborate artworks. You are sure to have ‘the’ time of your life visiting Amsterdam. Also, there are a couple of neighborhoods you should try and visit when in Amsterdam and have time. I would recommend ZannseSchanswhich is known for its windmills and Kasteel De Haar known for its pointed castles. You should definitely visit this place if you are an earnest traveler and the city will not dishearten you.

The above mentioned best places to visit in Amsterdam features all key tourist attractions that you need to make your tour memorable. No matter during which season of the year you are traveling to Amsterdam, the city has something or other to make your tour memorable. If you are planning to visit few more popular cities in Europe then don’t forget to check out our other travel guides.

About Author

SALONI DONGRE: An engineer in the workplace and a chef at home, travelling isn’t just a passion but a lifestyle for her too. You’ll find her toiling her days away behind the kitchen counter and stuffing her loved ones up with amazing, authentic dishes. Saloni can always be found with a steaming cup of tea in her hand and an infectious smile on her face. Never to be the one to skip out on an adventure, she loves spontaneous getaways and exploring different cuisines with the locals. According to her, life is worthy only when every moment is savoured fully.

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2 Responses

  1. Awesome post! Other top day trips include visits to the historic town of Haarlem near the North Sea, or others including Enkhuizen, Hoorn, and Kampen.

  2. Amsterdam is one of my favorite places, it’s such a gorgeous city! I really need to visit next year and see the tulips though, I just missed them this year.

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