As one of Europe’s most famous cities, Amsterdam has a reputation to uphold. And it doesn’t disappoint. Diana Kotwal finds out the top things to do in Amsterdam to help you create memories that last a lifetime.
If you listen carefully, you’ll hear an orchestra playing around you in Amsterdam – the gentle buzzing of the vintage windmills, the rhythmic tapping of authentic wooden clogs on pebbled streets, the soft splashing of open air boats as they glide through the iconic canals and the sweet, whispering fragrance of the bright-hued tulips in the cool breeze. When it all comes together, it plays like an intoxicating symphony. There’s magic in the way this city moves. And if you want to really enjoy the incredible sights and sounds, here is a list of the top things to do in Amsterdam.
7 Best Things To Do In Amsterdam
#1 Cruising On The Canals
The canals run intricately through Amsterdam, linking the city intimately. Hop on to a glass-roofed or an open-air boat, and sail through the watery streets as you take in the sightseeing in Amsterdam. Armed with an enlightening guide, you get a front-row seat to the glorious, centuries-old architecture as well as the trademark, water-front homes. So take in a glass of wine, or even dinner while you roam the amazing waterways that define this gorgeous city. This is one of the top things to do in Amsterdam, so be sure to book your pass.
#2 The Heineken Experience
When a defunct brewery is reborn as one of the best Amsterdam attractions, things get little interesting. Here, they have a museum that chronicles Heineken, from it’s humble origins in Amsterdam to becoming one of the world’s most popular beer brands. The tour includes vintage architecture and photographs, awards won by the brand, an amusement park for die-hard fans and of course, all the beer you’re able to drink. It’s a fun Amsterdam sightseeing experience you shouldn’t miss.
#3 Twilight Walking Tour Of Amsterdam
The Wallen, also known as Amsterdam’s red light district, is a huge part of Amsterdam’s history. Here, visiting and local sailors would come looking for entertainment in the seedy bars that peppered this district. Today, it’s one of the most popular Amsterdam attractions, and you can take a walking tour past the old streets and buildings, as a guide narrates the fascinating story of the city’s formerly dangerous district. Soak in the vibrancy and marvel at the architecture of the street to get the feel of Amsterdam sightseeing.
#4 The Van Gogh Museum
Got a free day? Wondering what to do in Amsterdam today? Here’s a tip. You don’t have to be an art connoisseur to recognise the brilliance of Vincent Van Gogh. The Van Gogh museum pays tribute to the genius who is considered the most influential artist of his age. This 19-century, post-impressionist painter lead a troubled yet eventful short life, in which he produced vivid, stunning masterpieces that were only acknowledged only after his death. View some of his most famous works like the Sunflowers and his self portraits to his lesser known, but equally great paintings.
#5 The Floating Flower Market
One of the top things to do in Amsterdam is to visit Bloemenmarkt. Amsterdam’s famous floating flower market, will take your breath away. And give your vision quite a treat too. Here you’ll be surrounded by vibrant colours, sweet fragrances and the fresh, natural beauty of some of the world’s best flora. Located on the Singel canal, this market sells a variety of beautiful flowers, the most prominent ones being, of course, the tulip. The best part? You can buy seeds or bulbs as souvenirs to bring home. In a way, you’re bringing back a piece of Amsterdam forever.
#6 The Dutch Countryside
Still wondering what to do in Amsterdam? Try leaving the city for a day. There are lovely fishing villages, fields of bright, planted flowers and the charming countryside to explore just a little out of Amsterdam. The village of Zaanse Schans is perfect for a half day tour from the main city. Here time stands still with 18th century windmills dotting the skyline and traditional wooden clogs being produced and sold in old fashioned workshops. Mesmerising, right?
#7 Artis Royal Zoo
Right in the city centre, is the famous Artis Royal Zoo. This is Netherland’s, and possibly even Europe’s, oldest zoo. The large, sprawling complex has vast habitats for a wide range of animals like elephants, jaguars, lions, reptiles and several primates. There is also marine life preservation with coral reefs and shark tanks, along with an interesting take of a canal as seen from the point of view of a fish. If you’re not too squeamish, they even have a micropia, a whole universe of germs and microbes, can be seen up close.
From art galleries, tiny hidden gardens, treasure-packed museums to craft breweries, Amsterdam has lots to offer. Among all the best things to do in Amsterdam, these are our favourite ones! Do you want to add few more?
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