With its picturesque network of canals and its rich history and culture, Amsterdam is one of the most popular tourist destinations. The city offers an endless selection of attractions to see and fun things to do. From cycling around the city to visiting museums, here’s what to see and do on your trip to the Netherlands’ capital.
Take a canal cruise
Taking a cruise on the waters of Amsterdam is a must! There are countless boat trips that take place every day, with several routes to choose from, which provide tourists with a fun and exciting way to explore the city’s canals and attractions. There are various types of canal cruises to choose from, from hop-on-hop-off sightseeing tours to romantic candlelit night time cruises with food and wine.
Eat herring from a food truck
The idea of eating raw herring might sound scary at first, but you simply must give it a go! You can always ask for ‘broodje haring’ to get the fish served in a small sandwich with pickles and onions. The best time to try raw herring is between May and July when the fish’s flesh is said to be at its sweetest. You can find herring carts serving up this Dutch specialty around every corner. Every visitor to Amsterdam should give this fish a go as it makes for an authentic Dutch eating experience.
Explore Amsterdam’s best museums
Home to the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum and the Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, Museumplein is the cultural centre of Amsterdam and the best place to soak up some of the city’s culture. This district offers open-air exhibitions, markets and a large pool perfect to dip your toes in on warm days. In the winter months, the square transforms to a large outdoor ice rink.
The Van Gogh Museum
The museum of Vincent Van Gogh holds the world’s largest collection of Van Gogh’s work as it includes more than 1000 of the artist’s paintings, drawings and letters. The building of the Dutch impressionist is a must-visit attraction as it offers visitors the chance to get up close with his works as well as learn more about the artists who were inspired by him.
Rijksmuseum is counted as one of Amsterdam’s top museums as it contains a lot of Dutch works from the 15th to 17th centuries, and features an impressive collection of works from artists such as Rembrandt, Vermeer, etc. Thanks to recent renovations, the museum was restored to its original glory, leaving visitors impressed with both the renovations and the collections inside.
Rent a bike
Amsterdam is known for being one of the most cycle-friendly cities in the world, and cycling in Amsterdam is a way of life. All the cycle lanes and routes make cycling easy, safe, and enjoyable! It is incredibly quick to get around on two wheels so there is no better way to explore the city of Amsterdam and discover its sights and attractions. Finding a bike to rent will not be a problem as there are plenty of rental shops around Amsterdam so join the locals and hop on a bike to explore the city’s streets!
Visit Anne Frank’s house
This museum represents a dark and airless space where Anne Frank and her family used to hide for a period of two years from the Nazis. Anne’s room has been preserved to give an idea of what life was like for Anne and her family. Anne’s famous diary situated in a glass case as well as a range of videos at the end of the tour showing real-life scenes from concentration camps make for a powerful experience.
When touring around the city of Amsterdam, you will most probably smell the delicious aroma of freshly baked waffles. Waffles are extremely popular in the Netherlands and there are shops you can get them from all over the city of Amsterdam. Waffles have different variations based on their stroopwaffel, which is made from two thin layers of grilled waffles stuck together with melting caramel. If you are a fan of sweets, the tasty waffles will be heaven in your mouth!