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Photo: goulao

Clear your head and get outside to explore Amsterdam like a local.

CONTRARY TO PULP Fiction lore, there’s more to Amsterdam than hash bars.

Coffee shops are the shit for many an Amsterdam virgin, yet locals view them as tourist traps lacking in “gezelligheid,” or coziness, the cornerstone of Dutch culture. Smoking yourself into a coma at the Bulldog is just fine, but you’re going to miss out.

Follow these ten tips and you’ll do Amsterdam like a local.

1. Immerse yourself in art

From Spui take tram 2 or 5 to Museumplein, where the Van Gogh and Rijksmuseum keep you occupied for hours.

View Van Gogh’s life through art, from the Potato Eaters up through the last two months of his life in France.

Holland’s Golden Age is the highlight of the Rijksmuseum. Don’t miss Vermeer’s Milkmaid.

2. Day trip it

For an excursion, the 15-minute train ride to Haarlem is worth the trip.

Browse fashionable boutiques, visit the Gothic St. Bavo church, and walk to the Frans Hals art museum.

For eats, kick back at the spacious Café Brinkman on the square, and to top off the day, have drinks at Café 1900 (Barteljorisstraat 10) on the way back to the train station.

3. Drink up

With more than 1200 intriguing pubs to crawl you’ll have more than your fill.

Start at the Heineken brewery (Stadshouderkade 78) to see how famous beer is produced. Check out Café Belgique to taste smooth Belgian brews like La Chouffe and La Trappe Dubbel.

Other standouts: gallery/bar Schuim (Spuistraat 189), Gollem, and In De Wildeman.

4. Night bike it

Photo: katielips

Amsterdam 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).

5. Club it

For pre-partying, head to Lux (Marnixstraat 403) Bitterzoet (Spuistraat 2), or Seymour Likely (Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal 250) for live DJs.

Join the dance crowd at Mazzo (Rozengracht 114), Club More (Rozengracht 133), and Paradiso (Weteringschans 6-8). For a laid-back vibe, check out Café Alto (Korte Leidsedwarsstraat 115) for local jazz acts.

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About The Author

Marla Seidell

Marla Seidell is a freelance writer who lives in Chicago. She lived in Holland for six years, because even more than she loves traveling, she enjoys living in foreign countries. Check in with her at http://www.mediabistro.com/marlaseidell.

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  • Nomadic Matt

    Excellent list. I'm a frequent visitor to Holland…lived there for a bit, went back for Queen's day, will be there again next month. Love it there.

    To add to add to your wonderful list:

    1. Club Escape in Rembrantplein is good on friday night (saturday is all touristy!)

    2. Visit Jordaan. An excellent district west of the central area that has great cafes.

    3. Visit the Amsterdam and the Jewish History museum.

    I second you on the indo food! soo delicious there.

    Ever indulge in wok to walk? decent food when you are on the run!

  • Christine Gilbert

    HAHAHAHA. This is the funniest title for a post ever.

    Oh and then she backs it up with a great post. Great work!

  • Marla Seidell

    The Jewish Museum and surrounding Old Jewish Quarter is an intriguing area to visit, I agree. I lived in the area at one time and I'm very fond of it.

  • afra

    Hello here somebody from Amsterdam

    There some corrections Mazzo (Rozengracht 114) and

    Seymour Likely (Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal 250, dont exist annymore but there is lots of new stuff going on, studio 80( Rembrands plein). Supper club (Very close to Nieuwezijds voor burgwal). For people how are in to gay party's there are great partys called UNK you can find info on these party's just googel theme. greetings and mabey see you in Amsterdam

    Aaf

  • sir jorge

    my problem is getting there; too expensive for a tech worker in a saturated market.

  • website design

    There's more to do than smoke pot? That's what Amsterdam is there for :P

  • Grimpuppy

    Thanks for sharing that. Found it to be a really good read and blogged about this story on my blog here: http://blog.grimpuppy.com/2008/06/10-things-to-do
    Thanks Again,
    Grimpuppy

  • Greg

    For lodging, I recommend the StayOk Vondelpark. Excellent staff, service, and breakfast included every day. We got a week stay for $250 Canadian, and all of our belongings were kept safe in our lockers.

    Until next time, Amsterdam!

  • http://sirjorge.com/blogx sir jorge

    my problem is getting there; too expensive for a tech worker in a saturated market.

  • Pingback: Strasbourg

  • Matt

    the rice table…… there are some good ones in Rotterdam as well. Rice table will change your life, yeah, its that good.

  • http://grimpuppy.com Grimpuppy

    Thanks for sharing that. Found it to be a really good read and blogged about this story on my blog here: http://blog.grimpuppy.com/2008/06/10-things-to-do-in-amsterdam-besides.html

    Thanks Again,
    Grimpuppy

  • http://greenteahealing.com/ Greg

    For lodging, I recommend the StayOk Vondelpark. Excellent staff, service, and breakfast included every day. We got a week stay for $250 Canadian, and all of our belongings were kept safe in our lockers.

    Until next time, Amsterdam!

  • steve

    or you can do all those things high

  • dixon
  • John BlueFoot

    Outstanding. That is certainly ten cool things to do.

    JT
    http://www.FireMe.To/udi

  • Toby

    Besides getting lost walking, riding a bike, and/or taking a tram whichever direction…
    I highly recommend going to movies in Amsterdam. The selection of movies is diverse and there are many great theaters of many varying styles of architecture.

    Don't forget to get drunk, swipe a bike and throw it in a canal; seems like a common occurrence when you watch them dredge the canals.

  • john fournier

    great…. so in summary

    1. eat
    2. shop
    3. walk (have to do that anyways)

    thats what old fat tourists do in Uhmerika.

  • corn

    Sure theres stuff to do besides smoke weed, I made my own list:
    1. Eat weed brownies
    2. Eat mushrooms
    3. Vaporize weed

  • inbal

    vondel park , oster park or any other park of the city are wonderful for day brake
    there is the beach (you can get their by tram or bus)
    the dam square itself
    shopping streets
    flower market
    watterloo plain the flee market next to city hall
    the opera house – great production
    eat some space cake
    if you have a weekend with sun have some shrooms and go blast yourself with laughing and joy
    and give yourself at list one day without no one just to roam around (stoned) and embrace universal adventures.
    I have to say this post is nice but sound so virgin in Amsterdam that I cant help asking if you really leave in Amsterdam yourself and how often do you go out from the house?
    lived there few years and miss it like hell

  • Ski

    Wow corn, thats a great list. Thanks for providing some unique insight into Amsterdam tourism.

  • John BlueFoot

    Outstanding. That is certainly ten cool things to do.

    JT
    http://www.FireMe.To/udi

  • Nick Chandler

    Where the hell is the mention of whores? Seriously?

  • Jan

    The Mazzo closed a few years ago.

  • erin101

    Simply breath taking..now l really want to visit Amsterdam…

  • Hannah

    Hey, I lived in Holland for almost 7 years, grew up there, i love it, I agree about the jewish museum completely, and I say to add going to the Langstraat for some local small shops

  • Toby

    Besides getting lost walking, riding a bike, and/or taking a tram whichever direction…
    I highly recommend going to movies in Amsterdam. The selection of movies is diverse and there are many great theaters of many varying styles of architecture.

    Don’t forget to get drunk, swipe a bike and throw it in a canal; seems like a common occurrence when you watch them dredge the canals.

  • john fournier

    great…. so in summary

    1. eat
    2. shop
    3. walk (have to do that anyways)

    thats what old fat tourists do in Uhmerika.

  • corn

    Sure theres stuff to do besides smoke weed, I made my own list:
    1. Eat weed brownies
    2. Eat mushrooms
    3. Vaporize weed

  • Jack

    In Amsterdam last month I had the best Thai food I've ever tasted outside of Thailand at the Butterfly Thai Café (http://www.butterfly-thaicafe.nl). And beautiful waitresses working there too. It's just outside the Red Light District (Oudezijds Achterburgwal 160), not far from Dam Square.

  • inbal

    vondel park , oster park or any other park of the city are wonderful for day brake
    there is the beach (you can get their by tram or bus)
    the dam square itself
    shopping streets
    flower market
    watterloo plain the flee market next to city hall
    the opera house – great production
    eat some space cake
    if you have a weekend with sun have some shrooms and go blast yourself with laughing and joy
    and give yourself at list one day without no one just to roam around (stoned) and embrace universal adventures.
    I have to say this post is nice but sound so virgin in Amsterdam that I cant help asking if you really leave in Amsterdam yourself and how often do you go out from the house?
    lived there few years and miss it like hell

  • Janna

    Leave the Heineken Experience (its closed for renovation anyway) and visit Brouwerij 't IJ (http://www.brouwerijhetij.nl), with good beer and almost personal tours. Or try Wijnand Fockink (http://www.wynand-fockink.nl/), a small, very old distillery near Damsquare.

    I'm sorry, I just hate it when tourists only do touristy stuff like visting Heinekenen while Amsterdam has much more good beers and liqours

  • Morley

    Visitors should also be sure to order pankoeken at least once, as it's both delicious and relatively cheap.

  • Jeff-K

    So I stumbled upon this list and indeed the title cought my eye. So I started reading…

    "Follow these ten tips and you’ll do Amsterdam like a local."

    Go to a museum, ok, anyone even slightly interested in visiting a museum will visit one when on any citytrip, with or without that tip, it's just what people do when on a citytrip!! The others that dislike visitting museums will not. Anyway it's, from my perspective, remotly the best tip to give, when you want to discover any city from a local point of vieuw, locals don't visit museums, it's there for tourists!!

    Tip #2 So we covered the tip about visiting the museum, what's next,… What can people do to discover Amsterdam without going to a coffeeshop…I've got it!!! get out of there! go to an other city!! (and before coming back get yourself drunk)

    Tip #3 ok you can get yourself drunk in Amsterdam as well.

    Tip #4 and #5 you can get yourself drunk in many ways, on a bike, in a club,…

    Tip #6 #7 and #8 Shop and eat… Sorry but I was still hoping to read a tip that's not in every touristic guide about every touristic city!!

    tip #3 or let's call it #9 hoping that people forgot about #3 already. As long as you drink yourself to dead, you don't have to go to a coffeeshop!!

    Yes!! whe've reached #10 and apparently you can go for a walk in Amsterdam!… hmmm…

    Funny thing is, I really don't like flame posts on the internet, but is this really the best you could come up with? You're a writer! And you've lived there for six years…

    I think that on my next visit to Amsterdam I'll just visit some coffeeshops where the everyday local comes in to get his everyday joint on his way home from the DIY-store. And maybe after that i'll try out tip #10…

  • BeyondRandom

    I love your stuff!
    Great post…next stop..AMSTERDAM!!

  • Onno

    "Belgian brews like La Chouffe and La Trappe Dubbel"

    Nitpick: La Trappe is in fact a Dutch brewed beer. The Belgians make plenty of good beer, so we like to take credit for the ones we do make.

  • http://www.google.com Ski

    Wow corn, thats a great list. Thanks for providing some unique insight into Amsterdam tourism.

  • Steven

    Splendid list. Miss one fav pasttime of the locals:

    Vondelpark. On a sunny day it great to go there for a pciknick or just to relax. Lots of artists and (amature) bands perform free of charge. Excellent past-time

  • Mark

    FYI for the US people on here, the name of the country is the Netherlands.

  • NotATourist

    Since I live very close to Holland I would my advice would be to ignore this list.

    Pot is what the country is all about, I only came to know the term "nuggs" through American friends of mine. Over here everything is nuggs and then some, if you're looking for harder stuff (maybe some acid but anything else …) I believe you're better off in the U.S. but when it comes to pot, it's rare to find better quality than you do in Holland.

    I would still kind of agree on the partying but there are better destinations in Europe to do that (Spain comes to mind).

    You may also be interested to know that most Europeans wouldn't drink Heineken if they've been in the desert with no drinks for several days.

    Which brings me to brown cafes. If you're looking for those you're much better off in Belgium, Holland people, despite all the pot aren't laid back enough to make a brown bar work, try Antwerp.

    And finally, riding a bike in Holland, though extremely common is a skill you need to master, traffic rules may be similar but you'll be riding over cobblestone, very close to cars, sometimes in between, etc.

    And maybe a sidenote, its not my cup of tea but there is one other thing about Holland you might appreciate, prostitution is legal, so go nuts.

  • ian

    Don't forget Anne Frank's house.
    Go there even if you haven't read her diary.

  • Jack

    In Amsterdam last month I had the best Thai food I’ve ever tasted outside of Thailand at the Butterfly Thai Café (http://www.butterfly-thaicafe.nl). And beautiful waitresses working there too. It’s just outside the Red Light District (Oudezijds Achterburgwal 160), not far from Dam Square.

  • Andre Nieste

    Time left? Your 2nd Dutch city to visit (yes, you can also smoke pot there) is Maastricht. Intriguingly different. For mellow tours check out maastricht-biking.com

    Lonely Planet Guide: Maastricht has a liveliness and energy out of proportion
    to its size. The people are irreverent, there's hordes of university students
    and the streets are steeped in history. No visit to the Netherlands is complete
    without a visit to Maastricht. Today this lively city has a reputation
    even in its own country of being a little foreign, and a place to sample the
    distinct tastes of neighbouring cuisines.
    Rough Guide:Limburg occupies the slim scythe of land
    that reaches down between the Belgian and German borders, its landscape, in
    the south at least, truly hilly, and with a charming cosmopolitan capital in
    Maastricht.

  • Lola

    Really nice article and great pictures.

  • Janna

    Leave the Heineken Experience (its closed for renovation anyway) and visit Brouwerij ‘t IJ (www.brouwerijhetij.nl), with good beer and almost personal tours. Or try Wijnand Fockink (http://www.wynand-fockink.nl/), a small, very old distillery near Damsquare.

    I’m sorry, I just hate it when tourists only do touristy stuff like visting Heinekenen while Amsterdam has much more good beers and liqours

  • Morley

    Visitors should also be sure to order pankoeken at least once, as it’s both delicious and relatively cheap.

  • Jeff-K

    So I stumbled upon this list and indeed the title cought my eye. So I started reading…

    “Follow these ten tips and you’ll do Amsterdam like a local.”

    Go to a museum, ok, anyone even slightly interested in visiting a museum will visit one when on any citytrip, with or without that tip, it’s just what people do when on a citytrip!! The others that dislike visitting museums will not. Anyway it’s, from my perspective, remotly the best tip to give, when you want to discover any city from a local point of vieuw, locals don’t visit museums, it’s there for tourists!!

    Tip #2 So we covered the tip about visiting the museum, what’s next,… What can people do to discover Amsterdam without going to a coffeeshop…I’ve got it!!! get out of there! go to an other city!! (and before coming back get yourself drunk)

    Tip #3 ok you can get yourself drunk in Amsterdam as well.

    Tip #4 and #5 you can get yourself drunk in many ways, on a bike, in a club,…

    Tip #6 #7 and #8 Shop and eat… Sorry but I was still hoping to read a tip that’s not in every touristic guide about every touristic city!!

    tip #3 or let’s call it #9 hoping that people forgot about #3 already. As long as you drink yourself to dead, you don’t have to go to a coffeeshop!!

    Yes!! whe’ve reached #10 and apparently you can go for a walk in Amsterdam!… hmmm…

    Funny thing is, I really don’t like flame posts on the internet, but is this really the best you could come up with? You’re a writer! And you’ve lived there for six years…

    I think that on my next visit to Amsterdam I’ll just visit some coffeeshops where the everyday local comes in to get his everyday joint on his way home from the DIY-store. And maybe after that i’ll try out tip #10…

  • JanJoost

    Hi there,

    As for shopping etc, I highly recommend visiting the Haarlemmerstraat. A street which has seen some major changes over the last few years, all for the better. Small shops, from good(!) food shops to specialized games shops, most definitely worth a visit.

    Also an excellent area to just wander around, the area between the Haarlemmerplein (currently being redesigned) and the Korte Prinsengracht is just lovely. Also visit the Brouwersgracht, and while you're there, visit the Cafe Tabac, arguably the oldest cafe in Amsterdam. Rumour has it it once was the entry point to a hidden church across the canal, on number 132.

    And a special treat is the Amsterdam Zoo: Artis. Being the oldest zoo in the Netherlands, it's a typical city zoo, meaning it makes very effective use of the available space, while still offering peace and tranquility – offering a nice break from the busy city life. Public secret: Every sunday at 11am free public tours behind screens of Artis. Just make sure you're at the 'apenrots' (japanese macaques) which is where those tours start. Tours are in Dutch though – you might have to bring someone to translate for you.

    Another little-known secret is the area next to the zoo: Entrepotdok – Laagte Kadijk – Hoogte Kadijk. Renovated about 30 years ago this has changed from a no-go area to one of the prettiest parts of Amsterdam. Special treat: Try and find the Binnen Kadijk. You'll be pleasantly surprised.

    A little stroll brings you from the Entrepotdok via a few Kadijken (Laagte -, Hoogte -, Binnen -, and Buiten Kadijk) to the Wittenburgergracht. Right in front of the church you'll find a nice 'haringkar' – go Dutch and have a raw herring. With or without onions, it's up to you!

    Finish with a beer from one of the few microbreweries left: Brouwerij het IJ, housed in a windmill at the Funenkade. Proper beer, ranging from regular (Pilzn) to super strong (Columbus – 9%).

    And for those not able to go in person: Check the photoblog of Thomas Schlijper, an Amsterdam-based photographer with a daily fresh selection of pictures, mainly of Amsterdam citylife. Check the archive for pictures of some of the places I just mentioned. http://www.schlijper.nl/
    Oh: short selection of (fairly) Dutch stuff:
    – Broodje rookworst at the Hema (smoked cooked sausage on a bun, at the Hema shop)
    – Broodje bal (meatloaf on a bun – sold at various places, try any butcher – mustad optional)
    – Sun, bottle of wine, book, Vondelpark
    – Vondelpark Openluchtpodium – Free Open Air podium in the middle of the Vondelpark – check http://www.openluchttheater.nl/ for program (in Dutch)
    – Boom Chicago – standup comedy in English, every so often a new show. At the Leidseplein (probably the only reason you'd want to go to the Leidseplein anyway)
    – Vlaamse Friet (fries, Flemish-style) at the 'Manneken Pis' in the Voetboogsteeg, probably the best fries in town
    – Go to the Tuschinski movie theater at the Reguliersbreestraat (just off the Rembrandtplein). Built in 1921 in a mix of styles (most notably Jugendstil and Art Deco) the theater is worth a visit for the building alone.
    – Open air market dedicated to books on the Spui, every friday from 10.00-18.00
    – Other open air markets (including Dappermarkt and Albert Cuyp – every day of the week I think)

    Most importantly: enjoy! And don't hesitate to ask the locals for tips, hints, suggestions – most of them are more than willing to share their favourite places with you.

  • http://beyondrandom.com BeyondRandom

    I love your stuff!
    Great post…next stop..AMSTERDAM!!

  • http://on-no.net Onno

    “Belgian brews like La Chouffe and La Trappe Dubbel”

    Nitpick: La Trappe is in fact a Dutch brewed beer. The Belgians make plenty of good beer, so we like to take credit for the ones we do make.

  • Steven

    Splendid list. Miss one fav pasttime of the locals:

    Vondelpark. On a sunny day it great to go there for a pciknick or just to relax. Lots of artists and (amature) bands perform free of charge. Excellent past-time

  • NotATourist

    Since I live very close to Holland I would my advice would be to ignore this list.

    Pot is what the country is all about, I only came to know the term “nuggs” through American friends of mine. Over here everything is nuggs and then some, if you’re looking for harder stuff (maybe some acid but anything else …) I believe you’re better off in the U.S. but when it comes to pot, it’s rare to find better quality than you do in Holland.

    I would still kind of agree on the partying but there are better destinations in Europe to do that (Spain comes to mind).

    You may also be interested to know that most Europeans wouldn’t drink Heineken if they’ve been in the desert with no drinks for several days.

    Which brings me to brown cafes. If you’re looking for those you’re much better off in Belgium, Holland people, despite all the pot aren’t laid back enough to make a brown bar work, try Antwerp.

    And finally, riding a bike in Holland, though extremely common is a skill you need to master, traffic rules may be similar but you’ll be riding over cobblestone, very close to cars, sometimes in between, etc.

    And maybe a sidenote, its not my cup of tea but there is one other thing about Holland you might appreciate, prostitution is legal, so go nuts.

  • ian

    Don’t forget Anne Frank’s house.
    Go there even if you haven’t read her diary.

  • http://www.maaastricht-biking.com Andre Nieste

    Time left? Your 2nd Dutch city to visit (yes, you can also smoke pot there) is Maastricht. Intriguingly different. For mellow tours check out maastricht-biking.com

    Lonely Planet Guide: Maastricht has a liveliness and energy out of proportion
    to its size. The people are irreverent, there’s hordes of university students
    and the streets are steeped in history. No visit to the Netherlands is complete
    without a visit to Maastricht. Today this lively city has a reputation
    even in its own country of being a little foreign, and a place to sample the
    distinct tastes of neighbouring cuisines.
    Rough Guide:Limburg occupies the slim scythe of land
    that reaches down between the Belgian and German borders, its landscape, in
    the south at least, truly hilly, and with a charming cosmopolitan capital in
    Maastricht.

  • mario

    Nice list. Two weeks late. Well, maybe next time. *giggle*

  • http://www.lolakinmade.com Lola

    Really nice article and great pictures.

  • JanJoost

    Hi there,

    As for shopping etc, I highly recommend visiting the Haarlemmerstraat. A street which has seen some major changes over the last few years, all for the better. Small shops, from good(!) food shops to specialized games shops, most definitely worth a visit.

    Also an excellent area to just wander around, the area between the Haarlemmerplein (currently being redesigned) and the Korte Prinsengracht is just lovely. Also visit the Brouwersgracht, and while you’re there, visit the Cafe Tabac, arguably the oldest cafe in Amsterdam. Rumour has it it once was the entry point to a hidden church across the canal, on number 132.

    And a special treat is the Amsterdam Zoo: Artis. Being the oldest zoo in the Netherlands, it’s a typical city zoo, meaning it makes very effective use of the available space, while still offering peace and tranquility – offering a nice break from the busy city life. Public secret: Every sunday at 11am free public tours behind screens of Artis. Just make sure you’re at the ‘apenrots’ (japanese macaques) which is where those tours start. Tours are in Dutch though – you might have to bring someone to translate for you.

    Another little-known secret is the area next to the zoo: Entrepotdok – Laagte Kadijk – Hoogte Kadijk. Renovated about 30 years ago this has changed from a no-go area to one of the prettiest parts of Amsterdam. Special treat: Try and find the Binnen Kadijk. You’ll be pleasantly surprised.

    A little stroll brings you from the Entrepotdok via a few Kadijken (Laagte -, Hoogte -, Binnen -, and Buiten Kadijk) to the Wittenburgergracht. Right in front of the church you’ll find a nice ‘haringkar’ – go Dutch and have a raw herring. With or without onions, it’s up to you!

    Finish with a beer from one of the few microbreweries left: Brouwerij het IJ, housed in a windmill at the Funenkade. Proper beer, ranging from regular (Pilzn) to super strong (Columbus – 9%).

    And for those not able to go in person: Check the photoblog of Thomas Schlijper, an Amsterdam-based photographer with a daily fresh selection of pictures, mainly of Amsterdam citylife. Check the archive for pictures of some of the places I just mentioned. http://www.schlijper.nl/

    Oh: short selection of (fairly) Dutch stuff:
    - Broodje rookworst at the Hema (smoked cooked sausage on a bun, at the Hema shop)
    - Broodje bal (meatloaf on a bun – sold at various places, try any butcher – mustad optional)
    - Sun, bottle of wine, book, Vondelpark
    - Vondelpark Openluchtpodium – Free Open Air podium in the middle of the Vondelpark – check http://www.openluchttheater.nl/ for program (in Dutch)
    - Boom Chicago – standup comedy in English, every so often a new show. At the Leidseplein (probably the only reason you’d want to go to the Leidseplein anyway)
    - Vlaamse Friet (fries, Flemish-style) at the ‘Manneken Pis’ in the Voetboogsteeg, probably the best fries in town
    - Go to the Tuschinski movie theater at the Reguliersbreestraat (just off the Rembrandtplein). Built in 1921 in a mix of styles (most notably Jugendstil and Art Deco) the theater is worth a visit for the building alone.
    - Open air market dedicated to books on the Spui, every friday from 10.00-18.00
    - Other open air markets (including Dappermarkt and Albert Cuyp – every day of the week I think)

    Most importantly: enjoy! And don’t hesitate to ask the locals for tips, hints, suggestions – most of them are more than willing to share their favourite places with you.

  • Marjos

    Link to Sie Joe is not the right one, this one is: http://www.siejoe.com/

  • Andy

    11. Get mugged.
    12. Get stuff stolen from your hotel.
    13. Get your rented bicycle stolen.

    Amsterdam – crime capital of Northern Europe.

    I speak from bitter experience.

  • Chris_B

    No one mentioned the Anne Frank house yet

  • Marjos

    Link to Sie Joe is not the right one, this one is: http://www.siejoe.com/

  • http://www.andytowler.com/ Andy

    11. Get mugged.
    12. Get stuff stolen from your hotel.
    13. Get your rented bicycle stolen.

    Amsterdam – crime capital of Northern Europe.

    I speak from bitter experience.

  • Johny

    11. Take a trip to a more nice city like Rotterdam and see the worlds biggest Port
    12. Take a trip to another very nice city "Den Haag"

  • Nomadic Matt

    Bike theft is a huge problem in Holland. It is why everyone has crappy bikes!

  • Marla Seidell

    Thanks Jan Joost, for your excellent tips and secrets about Amsterdam. I especially love that you suggested eating a broodje rookwurst at the Hema, what could be more Dutch? I wrote about it on my blog, http://www.wanderingjewess.wordpress.com

  • Norm

    OK, my recommendations to foodies:

    A small Bus ride (Zeeburgerstraat: bus 22; Oosterburgertstraat: bus 32) from Central Station is a working class Belgian style brewerie complete with windmill called Brouwerij 't IJ (pronounced Eye). Their Zatte beer is my favorite and the rest of their beers are very good. I'm a beer snob and I would walk several miles for a Zatte! Just google Brouwerij 't IJ for more information. They offer tours and pub style grub in a relaxed environment.

    Chocolate – Don't miss Stam Chocolate. There's multiple locations throughout Holland (and some showing up in the US) including Amsterdam. If you purchase their bon-bons, make sure you ask about the various fillings – let the person behind the counter know ahead of time you don't want this or that and they'll take good care of you. I don't like Marzipan (almond paste) or any kinds of fruit. Their butter creams rock and one of the best milk chocolate bars I've ever had – addictive!

    Stam Chocolaterie
    Osdorpplein 629 1068TB Amsterdam
    (020)6104717

    Pancakes – Dutch Pancakes are available everywhere. Be sure to get them at more well established, older restaurants. Their much like crepes and you can order just about anything on them – ham/pineapple, curry chicken, etc!

    Last suggestion: When in season (colder months) you can purchase raw herring with onions on a small roll pronounced phonetically Broatja Hahring. No visit during the colder months when herring is in season is worth missing this !!!!

    Regards,
    Norm

  • http://www.webconsults.eu Johny

    11. Take a trip to a more nice city like Rotterdam and see the worlds biggest Port
    12. Take a trip to another very nice city “Den Haag”

  • http://www.nomadicmatt.com Nomadic Matt

    Bike theft is a huge problem in Holland. It is why everyone has crappy bikes!

  • http://wanderingjewess.wordpress.com Marla Seidell

    Thanks Jan Joost, for your excellent tips and secrets about Amsterdam. I especially love that you suggested eating a broodje rookwurst at the Hema, what could be more Dutch? I wrote about it on my blog, http://www.wanderingjewess.wordpress.com

  • Norm

    OK, my recommendations to foodies:

    A small Bus ride (Zeeburgerstraat: bus 22; Oosterburgertstraat: bus 32) from Central Station is a working class Belgian style brewerie complete with windmill called Brouwerij ‘t IJ (pronounced Eye). Their Zatte beer is my favorite and the rest of their beers are very good. I’m a beer snob and I would walk several miles for a Zatte! Just google Brouwerij ‘t IJ for more information. They offer tours and pub style grub in a relaxed environment.

    Chocolate – Don’t miss Stam Chocolate. There’s multiple locations throughout Holland (and some showing up in the US) including Amsterdam. If you purchase their bon-bons, make sure you ask about the various fillings – let the person behind the counter know ahead of time you don’t want this or that and they’ll take good care of you. I don’t like Marzipan (almond paste) or any kinds of fruit. Their butter creams rock and one of the best milk chocolate bars I’ve ever had – addictive!

    Stam Chocolaterie
    Osdorpplein 629 1068TB Amsterdam
    (020)6104717

    Pancakes – Dutch Pancakes are available everywhere. Be sure to get them at more well established, older restaurants. Their much like crepes and you can order just about anything on them – ham/pineapple, curry chicken, etc!

    Last suggestion: When in season (colder months) you can purchase raw herring with onions on a small roll pronounced phonetically Broatja Hahring. No visit during the colder months when herring is in season is worth missing this !!!!

    Regards,
    Norm

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  • ms

    What a shame my excellent tips never appeared here….. Potential visitors are missing out now Marla. All your fault!

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  • Wanderus

    I've always been kind of hesitant to visit Holland since smoking pot doesn't interest me. But lately I've heard about a lot of really great things to do there. This list just solidifies it for me.

  • http://wanderus.com Wanderus

    I’ve always been kind of hesitant to visit Holland since smoking pot doesn’t interest me. But lately I’ve heard about a lot of really great things to do there. This list just solidifies it for me.

  • Rich Dansereau

    This is such a great list of things to do in Amsterdam. The art alone could take up days. The bread with gouda and the Indonesian cuisine sound awesome.

  • Frank Booth

    "Heineken? Fuck that shit! Pabst Blue Ribbon!!"

  • http://activerain.com/blogs/richd Rich Dansereau

    This is such a great list of things to do in Amsterdam. The art alone could take up days. The bread with gouda and the Indonesian cuisine sound awesome.

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  • Sigit Wogono

    Thank you so much for the useful information! I am an Indonesian, and very proud to have you say "A former colony of the Netherlands, Indonesia now occupies Amsterdam, in terms of cuisine." Indeed, Indonesian cuisine is among the best cuisines in the world. You will never be able to forget its spicy taste, once you tasted it!

  • Jon

    Good list, glad there are other things to do there, as everyone I know goes for just one reason.

  • Luxury Hotel Thailan

    Thank you for your good list. Who want to go to Amsterdam only 1 reason?

  • Paige

    Getting drunk, meeting locals and traveling with your new friends to sketchy back allley bars is a MUST!

  • Richi

    ******* #1 AMsterdam TIP******* Do all the above after hittin up the coffee shop

  • SenatorM

    hey, I'm an US expat living in A'dam for the past 6 months, couple comments: yes there is a lot of art, but if you're looking to see something cool then do your homework, Foam photo museum and other expositions, A'dam is one of the hottest places for boutique design firms, a little research will take you much much further. The Heineken museum has been closed recently for renovations and no one cares, do yourself a favor and walk into any cafe (outside the red light) and order a bier. All cafes have house bier, always always .25 liter, don't be all surprised when they don't pour you a pint idiot. Walking sucks, you will be labeled a a loser or tourist immediately. Rent a bike and ride it around town – your butt will hurt after an hour – this is normal. Then go buy a bottle of wine and some snacks and chill out in the park. If the weather is nice, all the locals will be hanging out in the parks or cafes. If you're checking out your tourist guide, yes Vondelpark is the most famous, but there are parks just outside the center that are really accessible and beautiful.

  • coskun

    good work..

  • Travel Guide

    thanks for article / experiences..

  • BILL

    Hey, I lived in Holland for almost 7 years, grew up there, i love it, I agree about the jewish museum completely, and I say to add going to the Langstraat for some local small shops

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  • Ben

    A few more tips: The Dutch Resistance Museum on Plantage Kerklaan (just by the zoo) is really cool. If it's a nice day, take a bike ride down the Amstel to Ouderkerk. Check out the antique shops on Spiegelstraat.

  • doddi

    Cycling in Amsterdam is worth it just because it's so hectic. The architectures so amazing too – mind blowing.

  • A-grain-of-Rice

    Thanks for the tips! Comes in handy when I"m in Amsterdam in Oct. Definately will be visiting 9 street.

  • Michael

    BESIDES could/should be: INSTEAD. It would be nice to change the idea of the Netherlands being a "dope" country so thanks for this article. Nearly every cool/top/exiting destination in the Netherlands is within a 2,5 hours trip by train from Amsterdam Central.

  • The Dude

    The main reason I want to go is for the chrondo dankalicious but thanks for all the suggestions look forward to hittin a cafe then seeing all the awesome stuff!

  • Mark Johnson

    If you're in Holland in the spring, you've got to see Keukenhof. Third week of March to the third week of May. Flower festival is late April. Seven million bulb flowers. Smoke up before you go. Life is good.

  • Mark Johnson

    P.S. Oh, yeah, also: "drop" (licorice) is really popular. You actually can develop a taste for licorice, even *salty* licorice, even when *salty* means not sodium chloride, but *ammonium chloride* = sal ammoniac = smells and tastes like ammonia. Believe it or not–zoute munten drop is addictive. Walking at night is the best. Street markets–flea market at Waterlooplein is great. Queen's Day is a riot, sometimes literally. Queen's Night in Den Haag–stay out all night, drink, and watch every Dutch person get totally hammered and let loose. Heaven or hell, depending on what you like.

  • claire

    hi im goin on the 13th dec havin never read about amsterdam before, im only going to be there for 10 hours any ideas on what to fit in???

  • zee

    some wanker always has to say that on every web page about amsterdam. how original!

  • e rock

    how has nobody mentioned the Concertgebouw yet? besides being a beautiful building and one of the best acoustic halls you'll ever find, the Royal Concertgebouw orchestra is possibly the finest in the world. nobody should go to Amsterdam without going to a concert!

  • FrancoisTheo

    I love your personal comments compared to NO personal comments from the writer of the Article. Why not more of your own experiences, Marla? Especially since your lived in Holland for 6 years? The tips are fine, the pictures are fine. But there's no face to your Article, your own personal small stories – at least two sentences of why, for example Tip #1 or #6 are great.

  • Wonderlane

    No, it's ok – sex workers pile their trade like everyone else – learning to accept human needs is fine. It is when we repress them that trouble begins. It's no different of a prejudice than being against smoking pot. Human nature craves high mental and physical states. Happiness wears somewhat different faces over time and experience. Finally we discover happiness is within.

  • Wonderlane

    Gosh that sounds like fun – especially if you are on the bike when it goes into the canal.

  • hannahbanana

    rent paddle boats and paddle down the canals.. trippin on those shrooms you ingested earlier :D peace out!

  • Adam

    Theclub part is outdates, club more and mazo arent in Amsterdam anymore – these days its Melkweg (milkyway), Paradiso, Sugar Factory, 7th Heaven, Club8, Studio 80, Flexbar…… Between these clubs, you can probanly find some decent music (no britney or justin music – thank god)

  • Adam

    you mustve been a right failure to be mugged in amsterdam. Its probably the safest large north european city – speaking from experince havingand llived been to a lot of north european cities

  • Josh Mione

    Very good post, pictures were great.

    • roger

      AMSTERDAM is the most vibrant city i ever been to. walking in this city has to be the best way around. i do smoke weed, its getting more and more difficult to get in london and when you can get it, you get tiny draws for twenty quid, if ya caught wth it your classed as a junkie so, its nice for me and the missus to come out to amsterdam and do all the stuff were not allowed to back home. we love the small back street cafe’s but probably wouldnt find them if we didnt walk. having said that, the parks are beautifull, the canals are amazing and the arcitecture of amsterdam is out of this world. i aim to come here every year for the rest of my life. someone give me job out there and im moving lol. at the end of the day, its your holiday, its a holiday where you can pretty much do what you want so, no point listening to advice, just enjoy your time in the dam and do whatever the hell you want. a few good tips though marla, thanks!

      • TP

        Well maybe your thought will change as they have now brought in laws to stop non-residents from smoking week in the Dam. Completely prohibited. You need a resident card to buy it and heavy fines if you are caught, sorry dude.

  • fun4lif3

    dude, for your information, museums are not there for tourists, they are there to share and preserve culture and knowledge……..so if there is a museum wherever you live…go to it, and do ask for a guide, you might like it…..as for getting drunk well you can do that at home to, what is the point of visiting a place if you can't see it because you are to intoxicated……..you are in Amsterdam, smoke pot, go to the red district, do all those things that Amsterdam is famous for, but you can also enjoy it's culture and try to see things, so that when you talk to somebody and you say I've been in Amsterdam, and they ask how is it there, you can answer something different then i can't remember because i was to waisted to remember…man all the luck to you, but there is more to life then you describe

  • Marion

    Nice article Marla! Even if many tourists visit the city for smoking, Amsterdam is also a family-friendly holiday destination and a great place for art lovers.

  • Indigo Joe

    "Walking sucks, you will be labelled a loser or tourist" Spoken like a true American tourist Senator. Sounds to me like you're trying too hard to fit in. If there's one city to put in your walking boots it's Amsterdam. It has so many unexpected backstreet gems that walking is the best way to get around so as not to miss anything. After all, if you're on holiday, why rush?

  • http://www.travelhouseuk.co.uk Travelhouseuk

    Visiting the Netherlands means plenty of gorgeous scenery and friendly people, but the small world-class city known as Amsterdam has many of its own features not to be missed by travelers. Many visitors book a trip to this northern European city between the middle of spring and late summer when the city’s festivals and special exhibitions are in full force. There are a variety of Amsterdam sites sure to please a wide variety of travelers. The subsequent article discusses several that are not to be missed stops on your visit to Amsterdam.

  • http://www.GROUPS.YAHOO.COM/GROUP/ROUTE-40 MARK CREEK-WATER

    . . . WELL, SMOKE-ING POT, TOO, WOULD BE NICE . . . . .
    :-) :-)

  • Tove

    If you go to Amsterdam do NOT waste your time by visiting the van gogh museum. you are pushed around and horded like sheep, you get about one second with every painting before getting horded forward by the mob forming behind you. It’s basically a experience that makes you like van gogh and museums LESS. >____<

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  • Rochellin

    True… there is sooo much more to do than just smoking pot. Yes, I looove Haarlem, too. Jordaan was also when I really felt that I was in Holland. Can’t forget the markets, either… I loved Bloemenmarkt, a floating flower market that’s on the Singel Canal. : )

  • http://journal.marisaduma.net Marisa

    Eindhoven, I miss Eindhoven parks. Looks a bit like Melbourne.

  • B

    “there’s more to Amsterdam than hash bars.” – no there isn’t. Amsterdam is special because there you can do what in other places you can’t. All the culture and night biking and everything else can wait until you’re old. I have museums in my home town, so what. Also, i’m on vacation, so why should I do it like a local? I’m a local in my city, and it’s boring the hell out of me….

  • Ticky Tacky

    I would rather smoke pot than do any of that

    • Konspiro

      AGREE. Or do some of these things while smoking pot

  • Mike

    Great tips, though personally (besides clubbing) I would probably have a blast doing all those things while smoking pot throughout!!

    Seriously though, good tips I’ll have to save them for my trip to Amsterdam.

  • rinzewind

    Wel i am dutch, and i happen to live in amsterdam, and i can tell you there are a lot more things tho see than you are telling :) like for an instance there is a village on the border of amsterdam, really really small and entirelly existing of hippies :) google for ruigoord if you want to know more :p or there is also the party’s during koninginendag that is the birthday of the queen.

  • baby g

    i would reather smoke

  • snowboner

    I just want to say that I have gone to Amsterdam every year since 2000, and I am going again this year in July. As for most travelers to A-dam, I went for the coffee shops, but its everything else that brings me back.(i dont smoke pot anymore) walking is the best way to get around by far, riding bikes is awesome as well, but not everyday. I dont understand why she did not mention an open boat tour of the canals, not the big tour boats. You take your own beer or wine and the captian will take small groups through the big and small canals, not to be missed. Also there are alot of small museums such as, the sex museum, the torture museum etc. that should not be missed. And as for the clubs make sure u have women with you or good luck getting in, even if you just meet them on the way there. If you do make it in the club, be sure to tip the bouncer on the way out, like 5 euros each if you want to come back another night, they remember. the falafels and shoarmas ARE NOT TO BE MISSED! A big tip for taxis, ONLy use TCA taxis, they dont rip u off and always have a set starting price, they always have nice cars and usualy wear suits, ask him for his card and have your bar or wherever call him or the company for u. Take a day trip to the beach, the hague or haarlem. Walk around the modern part of Amsterdam, east harbor islands is a great contrast to the old center. Enjoy your time in Amsterdam, and stay there longer than a couple days, if not you will wish that u had.

  • Katie

    All those ideas are fab…. but popping into a coffee house first for a spliff will only inhance the days activities! (unless ur not used to smoking…also pick a nicer place then the bulldog… I mean I know they’re everywhere but there are a hundred better places within walking distance!!)

    Can I add… going to Nemo stoned or visiting the mini village stoned are two of the best things you can do in Dam :D

  • http://united4iran-nl.org Tori

    I hate it when commenters do what I am about to do, but it is for a good cause and it takes place in Amsterdam on July 25, 2009. I am using this popular post to promote a rally in support of the struggle for democracy and human rights in Iran. It will be in Museumplein from 12:30 – 15:30 on Saturday with music, speakers, and surprises.

    Going to a rally would really make you feel like part of the culture and provide you with an especially interesting Amsterdam experience! For more information go to the site: united4iran-nl.org.

    Thanks to Maria Seidell for allowing me to post this.

    • http://matadortravel.com/travel-community/vagabonderz Carlo Alcos

      Make that 11 things to do in Amsterdam…

      Thanks for the information Tori.

  • http://www.a-one-solution.com Kirana

    hhhmmmm… Indonesian food… now I feel..very hungry.. the fried rice.. hhhhmmm yummmy…

  • http://compareaway.com Holiday rentals

    I love to go to Amsterdam for long weekends and find the cheapest way to stay there is to book cheap holiday rentals. You can get some great deals for short stays and late availability – I usually use Compareaway.com to book them.

  • Lee Maror

    Oh, Ok, Don’t smoke pot. Just sit and drink and beer all day. Then at night, go to a club and drink more. Then get on a bike and ride around. Good plan.

  • http://www.tvrotsyourmindgrapes.com Tatiana

    1200 pubs! SAY WHAT! I wonder what the pub to coffeeshop ratio is. :)

  • Ace

    Well there is around 300 coffeeshops and you say there is 1200 pubs so id say the ratio is 4 to 1 ish. I’ve not been there yet but will be there in november and can’t wait. I’m certainly gonna be doing a tour of all the museums and without a doubt im gonna be sampling some of that sweet sticky strong skunk. I’ve made myself a little list of strains im gonna try, got myself a list of coffeeshops on a coffeeshop map. Im really looking forward to trying the likes of Blueberry, Amnesia Haze, Mango, White Widow, and the all famous Ice-O-Lator Jellyhash hmmmmmmmm yummy! Ive been watching lots of videos on youtube, getting myself all syked up and even going on google maps and checking out the 360 degree streetview photos so i have an idea of the place before i go there. As for the pubs i cant say alcohol really interests me, nor smoking any tobacco. I reckon i nice relaxing tour, meeting new people, hopefully get some cool videos on my HD cam to reminise and upload to youtube and il be sorted. If i remember this site il try to report back in a 2 months. Untill then il just continue to get excited and count down the days. woohoo! lol

  • http://swsonline.co.uk/ grinders

    Going to Amsterdam for the first time soon and I can’t wait. Unfortunately however, I fear I will spend most of the time in a coffeeshop or 5 lol

  • locowings

    FYI – the Van Gogh museum is one of the city’s finest, and should not be missed. That’s probably why there are such large crowds. Keep in mind, there are even more people in the museum on rainy days (typically, that’s the Dutch weather forecast). Also, the museum is open late on Friday nights – so you can get some culture without the crowds.

  • FrancescoXXX

    Hi folks ! I live in Amsterdam since three years and I love it.
    As an Amsterdammer (or Amsterdamned as we like to call us) I am very glad the tourists are so blind and mindless to stick only to the center of the city, following always the same tracks like horses with blinkers and being able to come back by themselves to the stable. This is allowing us and the Dutch to live our lives enjoying the real Amsterdam without the big issue of having to deal with tourists, that are here only to smoke or to enjoy the prostitutes, totally unaware of the rules and the rythmes of the city. Amsterdam has more than one hundred times more things to offer, but if you are not a local this is rather completely hidden from the tourist’s eyes.

    Cheers !

  • http://matadortrips.com GrammaB

    We went to Holland a few years back when we were stationed in Germany. We stayed in one central spot and headed in a different direction every day. All day trips. We saw the miniature city of Maduradam, The Hague and the boardwalk, Madam Toussauds Wax Museum, the windmills, and had an excellent canal boat ride. We saw the smallest house in the world and lots of wonderful little shops and restaurants. We bought a small waterpipe where the clerk asked casually if we wanted a screen for it. There are tons of things to see and do that don’t all require just smoking pot or sitting on your butt swigging coffee all day. This life is not dress rehearsal, make the most of it!

  • http://travelerahoy.wordpress.com/ Alouise

    There’s seems to be a lot of hostility in the comments. These are just other ideas (besides going to a coffee shop) that you can do in the city. I went to Amsterdam last year and found it to be a great city, very chill and beautiful. I went with a tour so my time there was very limited, but I would love to go back and explore more of Amsterdam and The Netherlands. I’m surprised The Anne Frank House wasn’t on the list, although it does get very crowded. While I don’t think you should have to spend every second of your travels at a museum, it also seems like a waste just to spend your time drunk/stoned (especially when you can do that at home). I say everything in moderation, but to each their own.

  • kieran mc court

    all them things are great but go to the dam and not get stoned come on like you can do all them things and even injoy some of that crap with a couple of js in you . besides a bet van gogh was a stonner most likly stoned the night he cut his ear of

  • oliver

    hey, I’ve been in Amsterdam for bout 6 months and after seeing all the tourist places and seen how all tourists go same damn places, I would like to know bout some more local places maybe a bit from the city center…
    So for any local u got any recommendations for places like panama ?
    I’m also looking for a smaller kickboxing gym than the major ones meijro and so on, any one got a good one in the center it would be much appreciated.

  • http:londoniscool.com William Wallace

    My personal favorite is meeting a goodlooking non hooker Dutch girl and getting her back to my hotel room to play some scrabble or something like that….HONEST, well maybe not scrabble….!

  • jasper

    Nice article Marla, and you’re right; there is more to Amsterdam than the coffeeshops.
    A tip: the Mazzo has closed down a couple of years ago. Instead, head to either Trouw or Studio 80 for some dancing.
    Another: instead of going to De Balie, head to cafe De Druif. A visit to this tiny bar feels like going back in time.
    And finally: the Heineken brewery is a tourist trap. Make your way to Brouwerij ‘t IJ where you can join a free tour on Friday’s at 4pm.

    • http://matadortrips.com/ Hal Amen

      Sweet updates/alternatives, Jasper. Thanks!

    • Maella

      do you have good mint tea in cafe bali?;-)

  • Jasper

    Thanks for the great article about ‘my’ city :-)

  • amsterdamconnoisseur

    The point is to smoke nice ganja herb AND do things like these, you don’t need to spend the WHOLE day in coffeeshops, just drop in a couple of times..

  • http://www.traveleden.com Holiday Apartments

    Excellent piece. It’s a shame Amsterdam is somewhat tainted by the perception of what goes on in the Red Light District and the “coffee shops”, but I couldn’t agree more with your points, especially spending time exploring the city’s cafes. We found some amazing places and the architecture, particularly around the Anne Frank museum is amazing… LOVE those huge windows!

  • joe n chris

    your the man man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! rock on brother sweeeeeet

  • Trapped wind!

    Wander what its like since the smokin ban? Went years ago, and Nooo I can’t remember a ting!…It was that good…….No Art Just lots of warm lovely coffee shops and hot chockomel…mmmm

  • Antaine

    Amsterdam isn’t ‘tainted’ by the Red Light District or the Coffeeshop culture. It is ENHANCED by them. They are an outward sign to the world of the accepting and ‘laid-back’ nature of the Dutch people, which is one of the major attractions of Amsterdam/The Netherlands. A visit to Amsterdam without a visit to either the red light district (whether for sight-seeing or to use the services provided) or getting stoned in a coffeeshop is like being in Paris and ignoring the Louvre or in Washington and refusing to go see the White House. The best way to enjoy a visit is to sample as much of everything that interests you as possible, including the markets,museums,parks,boat tours, day trips to nearby towns/cities

  • http://www.muntthee.com/ sarah

    I love this post. I have lived in Amsterdam for one year now and I hate when tourists think there is just weed and prostitutes here. There is so much more! Such a lovely city. If you want to know more about Amsterdam life, arts, and culture beyond weed, check out.

    http://www.muntthee.com/

    cheers,

    Sarah

  • KJ

    No you go to Amsterdam for one reason and one reason only to injoy the legalness of SMOKING theres fault for making it legal hahaha

  • Karen Jackson

    We felt exactly the same way! However, we didn’t wait for someone to offer us a job – we went out there and got jobs. Amsterdam is beautiful and we didn’t want to waste anymore time living in a place we didn’t really want to live in so we made it happen. We don’t plan to budge from our canal-view apartment :-)

  • Caroline

    I love Amsterdam, and am planning to move there for a little while after I’m done with school. Is it easier to find a job there if you can speak Dutch? Any advice on this is greatly appreciated!

  • Jamie

    I’ve been to Amsterdam 21 times in the last 5 years and i’m due to return again in 2 weeks. the only reason i visit is for the smoke but the place is lovely, people are great and the nightlife is also good. Smoke on its the best thing to do.

  • Eve

    We will be visiting Amsterdam in late October, actually we will arrive on 10-31 and I wonder do the locals celebrate Halloween there? Also I am definitely visiting a few coffee houses (very excited for this) after Amsterdam we will be heading to Brussels. I wonder, is it a bad idea to travel to other countries with marijuana? Are there any checks on the Eurorail or going into Belgium?

    • http://matadortrips.com/ Hal Amen

      Hi Eve,

      These might be good questions to pose in the Matador community forums: http://matadortravel.com/travel-forums

    • Erik

      Since it’s not October 31st yet, I guess i’m not too late to reply to your question. It is not a good idea to take marijuana on any trip outside Holland. Weed, like in the US, is illegal in Europe (apart from Holland and the czech republic) and might even get you in jail in some countries (France, for example).
      In Belgium, drugs will probably be confiscated, and you might get a fine. It’s not expected that you’ll get a drug search/check, but just be wise and don’t take them abroad.

      as for your question regarding Halloween… we do celebrate it somewhat, but not in any way comparable to the states. Don’t expect much of it.

  • http://www.occidentalpress.com Alprazolam

    Intriguing, how would I use this?

  • A-Town

    Well you can’t say stuff like that and not give us the deets ! I’m going to Amsterdam for the first time at Xmas, tell me some non-touristy things to do please, i’d really appreciate it. :)

    • Amsterdammer

      There is a lot to do in Amsterdam during X-mas. Can give you 2 tips
      1- during X-mas the Comedy Café Amsterdam always have good X-mas shows including dinner.

      The second tip is for Saturday 19th December. The Dutch are known for there tollerance. Experience yourself;
      Start @ 15.00 @ the SIngelkerk for an interreligiuos peace service, after the service, be at the Reguliersdwarsstraat(Gay area) @ 18.00 for the Pink Christmas market. ChicksWithDicks will sing songs of the musical Naaiatelier De Dekmantel

      Good luck!

  • http://margaritaman7.livejournal.com/ Janna Sesareo

    I approve concerning the majority of what’s getting said right here, I am pleased uncovered this. :) I was recently having a discussion concerning issue with butt father at the plant.

  • Dan

    i am going to be heading to Amsterdam this Tuesday (the 18th). Can any locals give me some suggestions for great local coffee shops that are less touristy? I’d like to do it like the locals :)

    Thanks!

  • http://www.flightsandbeyond.co.uk Chris

    Next time I am out to a trip on KLM, I think probably taking a stop-over might not be such a bad idea. There is plenty to do it seems besides what is known otherwise.

  • http://www.triptoafrica.co.uk erin

    I would rather smoke pot than do any of that

    • Burnz3vip

      What a tosser ya are !!!!

    • Steven Pennington2468

      420 smok de weed evryday

  • ama

    There is so much to do in Amsterdam, which is why it is my favourite city in the entire world even if there was no coffeeshops, though I’d prefer to have a few because it just makes things easier.

    I lived in Amsterdam for four too brief months and make a yearly pilgrimage or two back every chance I get. In fact, I had to decide this year I would go somewhere other than Amsterdam/Holland. I’ll be back in April for two weeks this time around and here are a few things I’ve been playing since I’ll be meeting up with a group of friends and have been put in charge of making Amsterdam fun.

    1. Smoke some of the Cannabis Cup winners from the last cup.
    At some point as a smoker you owe it to yourself to seek out the best strains of indica and sativa and give them a smoke. You also owe it to yourself to seek out the best Ice-o-lator hash (Bubble hash).

    2. Go to Koan Float for the 45 min float – 45 min deep tissue massage combo.
    It might be expensive to you, but coming from Paris it’s not to me. For 73 euros you get to float in one of their high saline isolation tanks, which if you eat a brownie or smoke a spliff beforehand will blow your mind. Weightless + weed/hash = AMAZE BALLS. I’m sure if Einstein had tried it he would have come up with a better equation, but simply put get as stoned as possible, float, and then get a deep tissue massage between 3-6 and then smoke a spliff afterwards and walk the canals as the lights come on.

    3. Eat something trippy and go to either Zansvoort or Zeeburg.
    Mushrooms dried or fresh are not legal anymore in Amsterdam, but you can still get a few things that, if enjoyed in good company responsibly, can really be a great way to spend a day. Trains leave for Zansvoort from Central Station every hour. You can get to Zeeburg by bus or tram. If you’re not up for the travel than there’s always Vondelpark as a substitute.

    4. Get on the water somehow. Whether it’s fancy boat tours with dinner or renting an electric boat or a paddle boat, you have to do this. If you’re lucky you can find a boat captain who will give you the private tour for a lot less than the boat tours charge. But do this. High, not high, it doesn’t matter. It’s fantastic fun.

    5. Stare in every window unashamed and sing out loud if you want to.
    What I love most about Dutch people is they seem to not only accepting but open as well. You can look into people’s windows (within reason and if the mood hits you sing out loud. I was amazed when I lived in the Dam by the number of people I heard singing or whistling as they rode their bikes or strolled down the street. Participate. I sing a lot of Prince personally.

    6. Eat some traditional Dutch food. Like staampot. Eat pancakes. Eat stroopwafels with tea. Yes the Indonesian food can be amazing, but Dutch food reflects the Dutch culture. It’s simple, not fussy, and usually very delicious in the stick to your bones way. Especially if you eat and drink beer with your meal.

    7. Walk everywhere.
    I have done the bicycle bit and to be honest all I wanted to do was keep hopping off my bicycle to explore things. I recommend renting a bicycle only if you are planning to go to a specific destination and it’s worth bicycling there. Make a tour for yourself and follow it. I usually ride a bicycle in Amsterdam when I don’t feel like taking the tram and there’s something else to see along the route, but nothing so specific I would rather walk. Make sure to look up the best rates for rentals. Some are ripoffs.

    8. Eat Indonesian food.
    I have tried so many places now I don’t have a favourite, but a good stand-by if you’re unsure Kanjil en de Tigjer is very good. on Spuistraat/Singelgracht but for what I consider the best of the best you must go to Tempo Doeloe on Utrechtsestraat. Not cheap, but amazing.

    9. Talk to Dutch people.
    Talk to Dutch people. If they don’t like you, you will know immediately. Don’t go around bothering people, but let it be known you’re up for a conversation. As a girl who loves football (soccer), I never had any problems talking to Dutch people in bruin cafes or pubs. I made a lot of friends this way and it made Amsterdam all the more fun. Be friendly. Most Dutch people speak English better than the actual English.

    10. Have fun whatever your budget. I’ve always felt in Amsterdam that with a lot of money or not a lot of money to burn that I could enjoy life there. This is supposed to be a French mantra for living, but in Amsterdam it is true. Don’t break laws or be disrespectful of the people who live and work in Amsterdam, but allow yourself a day where you plan nothing and relax and do whatever you feel like. The days I did this I ended up trying all kinds of cheap street foods, watched an amazing street art performance, got stoned for free, and ended up finishing my day with late night Febo.

    • Mariaclarepo

      much better than the first one ;)

    • Marek Krzyczkowski

      Well realy liked your write up and somewhat enlightened this August visit may be even better,and apart from apart from my thing about drawing everything I see whilst in the Dam,also may I remind you of Einstien theory on Socks”One always missing the other has got holes” which is pretty correct Pravda ..Ama thank you kindly.

    • PatB

      I think ama definitely knows what they are talking about, this article sounds like your going with your grandparents. I was amazed to look at the comments and see vacation ideas that were way better

    • JP

      Great tips!Where to rent a boat in Amsterdam (addition info to tip 4)?Boaty Rent a Boat: http://www.amsterdamrentaboat.comIf you haven’t got the budget for a rental boat: free ferríes behind central station.Also try out Club Roest and Hanneke’s Boom, both great water front cafe’s.
      Fancy with a nice view: Mint Hotel.

  • http://www.pedalsaloon.com marga

    Try out the great beerbike.

    check it out at:
    http://www.pedalsaloon.com

    Kind regards,

    Marga Stam

    0229 574735
    06 51850805

  • http://vitrasin.matadoru.com Vitra

    I think a 25 minute train ride to Leiden is lovely as well–charming little town, windmill in the middle, Rembrandt’s house, nice cafes near canals, and the women wear awesome boots! (i’m a big shoe person…lol)

  • Kelly

    Sadly this list is a little lacking. I guess I was hoping for some things that were a little less mainstream. You find these types of suggestions in pretty much every guide book or website. I’ve come to expect more than this from Matador, so have to admit I’m a little disappointed, especially since it’s coming from someone who lived in Holland for 6 years… really that’s all you discovered in 6 years?

  • vidc

    I think La Trappe is in fact the only Dutch Trappist beer and thus not a Belgian one …
    http://www.latrappe.nl/intro.asp :-)

  • Rivero729

    pretty cool! there is also a free walking tour of the city that goes through the red light district, the jordaan, the jewish district and china town. There are also many activities at nigh such as the pubcrawls for backpackers. For more ideas check out http://www.amsterdamletsplanit.com

    • Amanda Haley

      The Free Europe tours are great. I’ve been in several different cities and they have all been great (for a free tour) and their paid ones are good too. Tour guides are young people from around the world.

      • Rivero_729

        I personally havent taken the paid ones yet, but ive heard they are awesome! ive been on the free one 3 times already (with visitors) and it has exceeded expeectations all times

  • Deeptiahuja

    Nice write up!!! It somewhat enlightened me for my upcoming visit! i have availed one yatra.com package recently! I’m so excited about the trip…m sure it’s gonna be superfun as my experience with yatra.com has always been great.

  • piss boy

    Hi,

    So, basically what you’re saying is “do everything you can do everywhere else in the world”?

    Wow

  • Zubair sohail

    I will be going to Netherlands in March for ASOT 550 celebration in Den Bosch. I mistakenly bought an extra ticket to the show and have no means of returning it. So if anybody is interested they can let me know I am willing to sell it for the same price that I paid for it.

  • da

    Last week in Amsterdam i went to this new museum the Game Museum Amsterdam. Just in the middle of the center next to the Historical museum.
    I played Pong, Donkey Kong and a lot off videogames starting from the 70′s. Nice people, cheap entrance and a free dutch cofee. Also ther is a nice Italian restaurant just a few steps next to the game museum.

  • Info

    I Plan on going here with a lot og money and plan on taking lots of drugs and fucking lots of whores. jacuzzi, swimming pools and limo. fuck the locals, fuck the art and fuck the canals

  • Gijs

    Very creative on the drink up and club it! Thanks for proving my point. This city f’ing sucks.

  • Amsterdam Traveler

    1: Explore Amsterdam on a classic sidecar motorbike – http://www.amsterdamsideways.com – the most original way to experience Amsterdam

    2: Eat a kroket at Febo

    3: Visit Keukenhof (seasonal)

    4: Visit Leiden, a very relaxed town near Amsterdam

    5: Visit Jordaan

    6: Go with the Ferry to the other side of IJ

    7: Eat Belgium Fries in een puntzak with lots of majo

    8: Have a drink at the restaurant on top of the Kalvertoren (kalverstraat), you will have a nice view of the city

    9: Visit the red light disctrict by Night

    10: Visit the banana bar by Night

  • Brenda Bonte

    Great article! Another great thing to do is to rent a boat and go through the canals of Amsterdam. You can do this at boats4rent boat rental. The boats are electric and self operated. After a short explanation you are able to drive the boat yourself. For more information you can take a look at their website. http://www.rentalboatsinamsterdam.com/

  • Brenda Bonte

    Great article! Another great thing to do is to rent a boat and go through the canals of Amsterdam. You can do this at boats4rent boat rental. The boats are electric and self operated. After a short explanation you are able to drive the boat yourself. For more information you can take a look at their website. http://www.rentalboatsinamsterdam.com/

  • Brenda Bonte

    Great article! Another great thing to do is to rent a boat and go through the canals of Amsterdam. You can do this at boats4rent boat rental. The boats are electric and self operated. After a short explanation you are able to drive the boat yourself. For more information you can take a look at their website. http://www.rentalboatsinamsterdam.com/

  • Brenda Bonte

    Great article! Another great thing to do is to rent a boat and go through the canals of Amsterdam. You can do this at boats4rent boat rental. The boats are electric and self operated. After a short explanation you are able to drive the boat yourself. For more information you can take a look at their website. http://www.rentalboatsinamsterdam.com/

  • Brenda Bonte

    Great article! Another great thing to do is to rent a boat and go through the canals of Amsterdam. You can do this at boats4rent boat rental. The boats are electric and self operated. After a short explanation you are able to drive the boat yourself. For more information you can take a look at their website. http://www.rentalboatsinamsterdam.com/

  • Brenda Bonte

    Great article! Another great thing to do is to rent a boat and go through the canals of Amsterdam. You can do this at boats4rent boat rental. The boats are electric and self operated. After a short explanation you are able to drive the boat yourself. For more information you can take a look at their website. http://www.rentalboatsinamsterdam.com/

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