Amsterdam is one of the most popular cities in Europe. With hundreds of bridges, an elaborate canal system, cute gable houses and plenty of sights to see – its easy to see why.
We have been wanting to visit Amsterdam for ages and finally we had a long weekend to enjoy the city and all it has to offer.
As always I had a long list of sights and things we wanted to do in Amsterdam, so we tried to squeeze in as many things as we could. Here’s a little snip of what we did and a guide to visiting Amsterdam;
See 15 bridges at once!
Even at night, this city is magical. All the canal bridges have strings of lights around the arches. From one point, you can see 15 bridges at once. If you head to Herengracht, you can see 6 arched bridges south, 6 to your left, 2 to your right and the 15th bridge is the one you’re standing on.
Pick up some Tulips and Clogs
Bloemenmarkt, is Amsterdam’s only floating flower market in the world, and one of the most fragrant places of interest of Amsterdam – in all seasons. Since 1862, the flower stalls stand on houseboats. Here you can find all sorts of tulips and many types of other flowers – fresh cut flowers or bulbs to take home and plant yourself. The stalls also sell tourist gifts, such as the famous Dutch wooden clogs – you can even get comfy clog slippers!
Watch out for cyclists
They are everywhere! Cycling in Amsterdam is a way of life, made easier by the city’s bike paths and cycle routes. From students to police officers, everyone is on a bike. So because of this, locals can get a bit annoyed if you walk on a bike lane – so be careful where you walk.
Drink some Heineken
The Heineken Experience is a must-see in my book. You get to tour the old Heineken Brewery. As they don’t brew the beer here anymore, it now serves as an ‘experience’ to show beer lovers how it’s made. For the price of €16, you get to learn the history of Heineken, experience an interactive tour to learn about the brewing process, see the horses that used to transport the beer around the city. After all that, you receive three beers, and even get a chance to pull your own pint!
There are lots of fun interactive things to do, and it’s well worth a visit.
Of course, we enjoyed some Heineken over dinner, whilst in Amsterdam. After all, it is one of the most popular beers in the world.
Anne Frank House
The Anne Frank House at Prinsengracht 263 in Amsterdam is where she and her family lived in hiding for more than two years during WWII. Now converted into a museum it contains a sobering exhibition about the persecution of Jews during the war.
From 9am-3.30pm, you can buy tickets online and not have to queue. As our trip was a bit last minute, all the time-slots were taken. The good news is that after 3.30pm, you can buy tickets (for the same price) at the door. The bad news? People start to queue for this before 2pm. We decided to go around lunchtime and the queue wasn’t that long, so we waited. It was worth the wait – quite a humbling experience. My tip would be to plan to queue if you can’t get tickets and take snacks and perhaps something to do whilst you wait.
I amsterdam Sign
Situated in the Museum district, outside the Rijksmuseum, the large “I Amsterdam” slogan has quickly became a city icon and photo opportunity for many visitors. Photographing themselves in, around and even on top of the slogan, it is a must-visit whist in Amsterdam. Be prepared to get a lot of people in your picture – unless you go uber early in the morning.
There are so many other things that we tick off in Amsterdam, so a second trip is definitely needed. Until next time, Proost!!