Amsterdam, a city so frequented by tourists for a variety of different reasons. Whether the architecture of the city, the elaborate canal network, the history, the arts or the Red-Light District. When you first arrive in Amsterdam, you will be made to feel welcome. There are 75 museums in Amsterdam, many of which are world-renowned, from the Rijksmuseum to Anne Frank’s House. You will have a new museum to discover every day. Take a few days to explore all the hidden gems of this beautiful metropolis and make sure to have yourself a beer or two, relax, and watch as time goes by so quickly that you wish you booked one more night.
Start Your Weekend Off Right!
5. Sex Palace Peep Show
Where – Red Light District
Price – €2 per 2 minutes.
Is it possible to come to the city defined by the liberation of sex and not at least venture softly into the world of the Red Light District? Probably not, I mean… how can ya not? As you walk along the narrow streets, enticed by what is on offer, you can feel overwhelmed. A gentle approach and more conversation friendly would be to go to the Sex Palace Peep Show. For just a couple of euros you can see any one of a variety of performers, from solo girl to couples. Take your place in a booth and watch as the live performance takes place in front of you and around 20 other people’s eyes. Once your time is up, the lights go out, if you want more just pop another coin in and continue as long as you desire.
4. Fromagerie Abraham Kef
Where – Jordaan Neighbourhood
Price – Under €10.
Amsterdam is a city where there are 55 speciality cheese shops and even a cheese museum. You may find yourself enticed into one of the tourist shops, where the cheese is overpriced and the quality is not up to standard. By taking a small detour out of your day to Fromagerie Abraham Kef, you will be able to try a variety of local cheeses with expert advice. After sampling, pick your favourite, grab a baguette and sit by the canal with a local beer and have one of the best afternoon snacks of your life. You will fall in love with cheese all over again.
3. Brouwerij ‘t IJ
Where – Plantage Neighbourhood
Price – €3 per glass
A day can’t go by in this city without sampling one of the country’s local craft beers. Keep your eyes open for this modern brewery defined by its windmill. Inside you will find an array of craft beers, start with the tasting menu to find the right fit and then go for a glass of it. The brewery offers a fine craft beer for all palates, whether you prefer a blonde, an IPA or an amber beer. There is ample seating both inside and out, with a positive, friendly vibe, you will find yourself ensuring you frequent here more than once in your short trip to Amsterdam. Careful not to fall into a canal after 1 or 10 of these potent beers!
2. Those Dam Boat Guys
Where – Book Online
Price – €40 for 90 minutes.
After walking the canals, take a step back and see them from a boat. It gives a whole new perspective of the city. In a small boat tour, you will feel less like a number and more engaged with your guide. Don’t be a typical tourist and take one of the big commercialised boats which overcharge you. Before coming on board, you will be encouraged to get a couple of beers and a smoke, and to sit back and relax while you get taken on a journey through both history and architecture. Make sure to book online a few days beforehand or you may be out of luck, their five star trip advisor rating ensures that they book up fast.
1. Rent A Bike
Where – Anywhere
Price – From €15 a day.
A trip to the most bicycle-friendly capital in the world would not be complete without getting on two wheels and getting lost in the labyrinth of canals. The bottom of the canals are lined with bicycles that have found their way in somehow. You can hire bikes from near enough anywhere, from hotels to specialist bike rental places. All will come with a lock and key, to ensure nothing untoward happens to the bicycle. If you are of the nervous disposition, take out insurance if you want peace of mind. Whether you are a beginner or have been riding all your life, you will find the standard bicycle here easy to use and comfortable.
Consider this then Explore the Canals
When you decide to take a trip to Amsterdam, consider adding an extra day on. You will thank me for that later. The city has so much to offer, an array of good food, beer and coffeeshops. Take it all in, enjoy this amazing city and think about how soon you could possibly be back again.
Rob Parker – Contributor, traveler and Manchester native