No, not because of that. Or that. The open-mindedness of the city and its inhabitants is very appealing, but away from the weed smoke and the twinkling red lights there’s so much to explore. I’ve been to Amsterdam more times than I can remember now and it’s because of the people, the atmosphere and the beauty of the canals and buildings.

Where To Stay   Things to See   Eating and Drinking

I won’t sport with your intelligence by recommending the Rijksmuseum or Anne Frank House – I’m pretty sure you’ll have heard of these. The best way to explore Amsterdam is on foot and just see what you find – there’s something to see on every street, even if it’s just sitting outside a neighbourhood café and watching the world go by.

5DC3D1EE-DF6F-4A86-9E58-BFAC5F62F1B2
The Rijksmuseum and Iamsterdam sign

It’s great for a solo traveller too – being such an internationally renowned city there are people from all corners of the globe visiting, and the relaxed atmosphere means it’s easy to strike up a conversation and make a new friend.

The city is compact enough to walk around in a day. You could spend the morning in the museum quarter, the afternoon at the Botanical gardens and the zoo in Plantage, and the evening enjoying dinner and drinks in the Jordaan. It’s the quieter areas away from Dam Square and Leidseplein that are the most fun to visit – you get much more of a feel of true Amsterdam, rather than being overrun by tourists and cheap Argentinian steak houses.

3F32C245-74C2-4980-BB9A-F78CB52E5E55
Slightly more sedate than a tram or bike

The number of tourists has become a quandry for Amsterdam – they keep the economy booming, but Amsterdammers are getting increasingly fed up with the sheer numbers and, on occasion, antisocial behaviour. With this in mind, it’s best to avoid visiting on a weekend in Summer if you can – if for no other reason than the accommodation costs will be even higher than usual due to too much demand and not enough supply.

3757828E-3261-4ABA-BB20-26E3D4DDA248
The Waag On Nieuwmarkt, near Chinatown

However, if you stay away from the traditional tourist hotspots you’ll have a fabulous time whatever the weather or day of the week. Amsterdam is possibly seen at its best in winter, the canals lit up in the dark and the narrow streets covered with a dusting of snow. Beautiful.

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s