Amsterdam Hotels Articles

May 23, 2010

Ten Fun Things to do in Amsterdam

One of the most popular things to do in Amsterdam, particularly among couples of all ages, is to take a long canal cruise. Open-top canal boats as well as canal bikes, which you pedal yourself, are available for this purpose. Guided canal boats can be rented for private trips. Sunset and night-time cruises come highly recommended.

Visiting one or more of Amsterdam’s varied museums is also a popular activity. Museum lovers usually purchase a museum card for free and quick entry to a large number of museums. As a city steeped in European history, Amsterdam is home to art, history, and science museums alike. Be sure to stop in at Anne Frank’s House to catch a glimpse of the life of the girl made famous by her wartime diary.

With all of the beautiful sights to take in, such as the range of medieval and modern architecture and gorgeous canals, a walking tour or cycling tour should find a place on your Amsterdam itinerary.

Amsterdam is also famous for its coffee shops. The prevailing atmosphere is relaxed and casual. Despite the name “coffee shop,” beer and even marijuana and other types of hallucinogens can be legally purchased at these establishments. The coffee shops are viewed as places to relax and socialize.

Don’t forget to visit the flower market and take home some of Amsterdam’s signature tulip bulbs or flowering cacti. In the summertime, visitors can purchase a large variety of flowers.

The Jordaan is one of the quieter parts of Amsterdam. It is filled with restored old houses and small canals. Small shops offer art, antiques, and pottery to visitors. There are also many cosy restaurants, cafes, and bars in the area.

Clubgoers will not be left out due to the widespread availability of hot and happening nightclubs. For a live band, check out The Waterhole near Leidseplein. The area has a busy city feel to it with its flashy neon lights and takeaway restaurants. For an energy-filled night of good times and good beer, visit the Irish Pub Slainte. There’s no hip hop or techno music and no marijuana, but the spirits are high and the flamboyant bartenders keep the crowd going.

A visit to any new city wouldn’t be complete without shopping. Tourists can shop till they drop at the numerous souvenir shops, street markets, and plazas. Everything from mini souvenirs to antiques is available at a range of prices.

Visit the windmills of Amsterdam for a terrific photo opportunity. While most of them are closed to the public, Sloten Windmill allows visitors to enter and is set up for easy accessibility for those in a wheelchair. Volunteers are on hand to explain how the windmill works and on occasion a miller is available to demonstrate. Sloten Windmill is also a popular site for nuptial celebrations.

Last on the list of things to do is a trip to the Heineken brewery. When the brewery was still active, visitors were given a guided tour of the brewing process that culminated in free beer and cheese. Today, for a few Euro, visitors have their pick of two top-notch bars and receive three large beers and a gift. The renovated old brewery still has many things to see, including a glass staircase, copper vats, theater, and a music video studio.

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