Visiting Amsterdam

Inside info

In Amsterdam, there is something for every traveler’s taste, whether you prefer culture and history, partying or just enjoying the charm of an old European city.Amsterdam's centre is fairly small and very flat so you can easily get to most attractions on foot. However, a pleasant way to cover a lot of ground is to rent a bicycle. The city is very bike-friendly, and there are separate bike lanes on most major streets. Bike rental shops are available at stations, and several others in and around the city centre. Bikes cost about € 9 to € 20 per day. (From £8 to £17) A must-do in Amsterdam is the Anne Franck house: this is the house where the Jewish girl Anne Frank wrote her diary while hiding with her family from the Nazis. Don't let the long line discourage you, it moves quickly and the experience inside the hiding places on the top floors is moving. The best thing to do is making reservations online in advance to skip the line. (Entrance €8.50/£7 for adults)Jordaan is one of the nicest « village » areas in Amsterdam with its narrow alleys and leafy canals lined with 17th-century houses. It has a wide selection of jewelers, fashion boutiques, galleries, designer florists and specialists’ shops. Dappermakt was voted the best market in Amsterdam. It is held in the Dapperstraat, located not far from the city center in the eastern part of Amsterdam. You can find everything here, as the goods on sale vary from fresh fruit to clothing and fresh vegetables to utility goods. The atmosphere is friendly and so are the prices - this is probably the best value of all the markets in Amsterdam.Take advantage of the diversity of restaurants, especially Asian. The influence of the Dutch colonial past is apparent, Indonesian food is usually excellent. Try the restaurant called “Sampurna” located in the heart of the flower market. The menu is with variety. The price is reasonable. The taste is incredible! In general, avoid at all costs any steak house in the city centre, they are well known tourist traps.

Travel review

The city itself is far more picturesque than I'd imagined, a sort of cross between Venice with all the canals and Paris with the beautiful architecture! Its clean, no litter around the streets and very safe to walk around. People are very friendly too. The Van Gogh is worth a visit. The only negative point is that we had to queue quite a bit, next time, I’ll definitely make my reservation in advance. Otherwise, it’s a very nice museum with well-known paintings such as the famous Sunflowers. We had such a good time just hanging out in the numerous bars of the city. Gommel was our favourite with its very friendly staff and its amazing choice of beers. Heineken, the famous Dutch beer is a good choice. On our last day in the city, we decided to take a ferry, there are several free ferry services across the river. We took the 15-minute service to NSDM Werf from the Central Station, a funky, up and coming, industrial neighbourhood. Ferries leave every 30 minutes from the Central station and NDSM Werf.The usual tip in Amsterdam in 10% and is not added to the bill.7) Do it like the DutchNothing says typically Dutch better than a hunk of Gouda stuffed in a fresh bread roll. Savor this ritual by picking up a sandwich at Broodje van Kootje (Spui 28). Grab a newspaper at the Athenaeum bookstore across the way, and plunk yourself down on a bench in the square. For another Dutch favorite, visit the Pannekoekenhuis, a tiny upstairs restaurant on the second floor of a narrow canal house. Dive into big pancakes, served sweet or savory.4) Night bike itAmsterdam is most romantic at night, when the city is aglow from lit up bridges and canals. Start at Leidseplein and bike down Kerkstraat to the Amstel River, where you’ll find the Skinny Bridge in all its glory. Cut across Waterlooplein to Jodenbreestraat, which takes you into Nieuwmarkt. Pay a visit to the Waag, a pub/restaurant that once formed the city wall, or brown bar Café ‘t Loosje (Nieuwmarkt 32-34).While credit cards (usually MasterCard and Visa) are accepted in most hotels and restaurants, many shops, cafes or museums still don't.By some estimates, Amsterdam has more bikes (1 million) than people (about 750,000). There are twice as many bikes as cars in the country.

Did you know ?

The Begijnhof is a late-medieval enclosed courtyard with the houses of beguines, women living in a semi-religious community. House number 34 at the Begijnhof is the oldest home in Amsterdam

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The weather in Amsterdam in the Netherlands

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The climate in Amsterdam

Located in the western Netherlands in the province of North Holland, Amsterdam is the largest city of the country and one of the most popular European destinations. While known for its infamous Red Light District, the city, with a population of about 820,000, is also a cultural capital with numerous museums including the Van Gogh Museum, the Rijksmuseum, and Anne Frank’s House. Thanks to its location near the North Sea, Amsterdam has an oceanic climate. Tourists can take advantage of the mild winters and moderate summers by riding a bike along the canals of this Dutch capital. The average low in winter is about 0°C, and the average high in summer is 22°C. The average annual temperature is 10°C. Precipitation is quite common, with an average of 187 days a year, but most rainfall is light or brief.