Top Things to do in Amsterdam and why?
Explore the Anne Frank House: Gain insight into the life of Anne Frank and the tragic history of the Holocaust by visiting the preserved house where Anne Frank hid during World War II. It's a poignant and moving experience.
Visit the Van Gogh Museum: Immerse yourself in the world of Vincent van Gogh and marvel at his iconic artworks, including "The Starry Night" and "Sunflowers." The museum provides a comprehensive overview of the artist's life and works.
Take a Canal Cruise: Discover the city's enchanting canals, a UNESCO World Heritage site, by embarking on a leisurely boat tour. Enjoy stunning views of Amsterdam's architecture, bridges, and charming canal houses.
Explore the Rijksmuseum: Delve into Dutch art and history at the Rijksmuseum, home to an extensive collection of masterpieces, including Rembrandt's "The Night Watch" and Vermeer's "The Milkmaid."
Wander through the Jordaan District: Stroll along the picturesque streets of the Jordaan neighbourhood, known for its charming canals, boutique shops, art galleries, and cozy cafés. It's the perfect place to experience Amsterdam's local culture.
Visit the Vondelpark: Escape the bustling city and unwind in Amsterdam's largest park. Enjoy a picnic, rent a bike, or simply relax amidst the lush greenery. The park also hosts various outdoor concerts and events.
Discover the Red Light District: Experience Amsterdam's famous Red Light District, known for its legalized prostitution. Explore the area's vibrant nightlife, quirky shops, and open-minded atmosphere.
Indulge in Dutch Cuisine: Sample traditional Dutch treats such as stroopwafels (syrup-filled waffles), herring, and bitterballen (deep-fried meatballs). Don't forget to try some Gouda cheese, a Dutch specialty.
Take a Bike Ride: Join the locals and explore the city on two wheels. Amsterdam is renowned for its bike-friendly infrastructure, and cycling is a fantastic way to discover hidden gems and soak up the local ambiance.
Visit the Heineken Experience: Delve into the world of the famous Dutch beer brand at the interactive Heineken Experience. Learn about the brewing process, enjoy tastings, and immerse yourself in the brand's history.
When is the best time to visit Amsterdam?
The best time to visit Amsterdam is during the spring (April to May) and early fall (September to October). These seasons offer mild temperatures, fewer tourists, and the opportunity to enjoy the city's parks and outdoor activities. Spring brings beautiful blossoms, particularly in late April when the iconic tulip fields are in full bloom. However, it's worth noting that Amsterdam's weather can be unpredictable, so be prepared for occasional showers throughout the year.
Is it expensive to eat out in Amsterdam?
Eating out in Amsterdam can range from budget-friendly to high-end dining experiences. While there are plenty of affordable options such as street food, local food markets, and casual eateries, dining at upscale restaurants can be relatively expensive. On average, a meal at a mid-range restaurant in Amsterdam can cost between €15-€25 per person, excluding drinks. However, it's important to note that tipping is not mandatory in the Netherlands, as a service charge is usually included in the bill.
What are the best restaurants in Amsterdam?
De Kas: Located in a converted greenhouse, De Kas offers a unique dining experience. The restaurant focuses on using fresh, seasonal ingredients sourced from their own garden. The menu features creative dishes inspired by nature.
Restaurant Vinkeles: Situated in a charming 18th-century bakery, Restaurant Vinkeles is renowned for its elegant and refined French cuisine. The restaurant holds a Michelin star and offers an intimate dining atmosphere.
Rijsel: This cozy bistro serves delicious and hearty French and Belgian dishes. The menu includes specialties like roasted chicken and moules-frites (mussels with fries). The warm ambiance and friendly service make it a popular choice.
Restaurant Johannes: Set in a former art school, Restaurant Johannes combines innovative cooking techniques with traditional Dutch flavours. The menu features a variety of seasonal dishes prepared with locally sourced ingredients.
Breda: Offering a modern twist on classic Dutch cuisine, Breda serves exquisite dishes in a stylish setting. The menu highlights locally inspired flavours and inventive presentations, making it a favourite among food enthusiasts.
The Seafood Bar: As the name suggests, this restaurant specializes in fresh seafood. Enjoy a wide selection of oysters, shrimp, and fish prepared in various styles. The Seafood Bar offers a relaxed and casual dining experience.
Blauw: For a taste of Indonesian cuisine, head to Blauw. This restaurant serves authentic Indonesian dishes, including rijsttafel, a lavish feast of small dishes. The vibrant flavours and cozy atmosphere make it a popular choice.
Café Restaurant Amsterdam: Housed in a former pumping station, this spacious restaurant offers a diverse menu with European and Mediterranean influences. The industrial-chic ambiance and canal views add to the dining experience.
De KasKantine: Located in Amsterdam's vibrant Westergas area, De KasKantine is a casual eatery serving delicious vegetarian and vegan dishes. The menu features seasonal produce and creative flavour combinations.
Café de Jaren: Situated along the Amstel River, Café de Jaren is a popular spot for locals and visitors alike. The café offers a varied menu, including sandwiches, salads, and hot dishes, in a relaxed and bustling atmosphere.
What is the local food like in Amsterdam and how much is a bottle of wine?
Amsterdam's local food scene is diverse and influenced by various cuisines. Traditional Dutch cuisine often features hearty dishes such as stamppot (mashed potatoes with vegetables), erwtensoep (split pea soup), and kroketten (croquettes). Don't miss out on trying the iconic Dutch snacks, such as bitterballen (deep-fried meatballs) and stroopwafels (caramel-filled waffles). Additionally, Amsterdam is known for its multicultural offerings, with a wide range of international cuisines available throughout the city.
As for wine prices, a bottle of wine in a restaurant can vary depending on the establishment and the quality of the wine. On average, you can expect to pay around €20-€30 for a decent bottle of wine. However, there are also more affordable options available, especially at local supermarkets and liquor stores.
What is the nightlife like in Amsterdam?
Amsterdam is famous for its vibrant and diverse nightlife. The city offers a wide range of entertainment options, from cozy pubs and trendy bars to lively clubs and live music venues. Here are some highlights of Amsterdam's nightlife:
Leidseplein: This bustling square is a hub for nightlife, featuring numerous bars, clubs, and live music venues. It offers something for everyone, from dance clubs to comedy clubs and jazz bars.
Rembrandtplein: Another popular nightlife spot, Rembrandtplein is known for its vibrant atmosphere and variety of bars and clubs. It's a great place to enjoy a night out with friends and experience Amsterdam's energetic nightlife scene.
De Wallen: Amsterdam's famous Red Light District is not only known for its adult entertainment but also offers a unique nightlife experience. It features a mix of bars, pubs, and nightclubs catering to different tastes.
Paradiso: Housed in a former church, Paradiso is a legendary music venue that has hosted renowned artists from various genres. It's a must-visit for music lovers and offers an unforgettable live music experience.
Bimhuis: Located near the Central Station, Bimhuis is a renowned jazz venue with a reputation for hosting top-notch performances. Jazz enthusiasts can enjoy captivating concerts by both local and international artists.
Comedy Café: If you're in the mood for some laughter, head to the Comedy Café in the heart of Amsterdam. It hosts regular comedy nights, featuring talented local and international comedians.
A'DAM Toren: This iconic tower offers not only breathtaking views of the city but also houses several bars and clubs. You can enjoy a cocktail at the rooftop bar or dance the night away at the club.
Melkweg: Known for its eclectic programming, Melkweg is a multi-purpose venue that hosts concerts, club nights, and art exhibitions. It attracts a diverse crowd and showcases a wide range of artistic expressions.
Brewery Tours: For beer enthusiasts, Amsterdam offers various brewery tours where you can learn about the brewing process and sample a selection of local beers.
NDSM Wharf: Located in the hip NDSM area, this former shipyard has been transformed into a vibrant cultural hotspot. It features unique bars, art installations, and occasional music events, providing an alternative and artistic nightlife experience.
Is Amsterdam good for families, couples, or single travelers?
Amsterdam caters to different types of travellers, making it a great destination for families, couples, and single travellers.
For families, Amsterdam offers numerous kid-friendly attractions such as the NEMO Science Museum, Artis Royal Zoo, and the interactive TunFun Indoor Playground. Exploring the city's canals by boat or bicycle is also a fun activity for the whole family.
Couples can enjoy romantic canal cruises, candlelit dinners at cozy restaurants, and leisurely walks through Amsterdam's picturesque streets. The city's charming ambiance and cultural attractions provide a romantic setting for couples to create lasting memories.
Single travellers will find plenty of opportunities to immerse themselves in Amsterdam's vibrant social scene. The city's diverse nightlife, bustling markets, and welcoming cafés make it easy to meet new people and experience the city's lively atmosphere.
Amsterdam experiences a moderate maritime climate, characterized by mild summers and cool winters. Here's a breakdown of the seasons:
Spring (April to May): Spring brings mild temperatures, ranging from 9°C to 15°C (48°F to 59°F). It's a beautiful time to visit as flowers bloom, including the famous tulips.
Summer (June to August): Summers are generally pleasant, with temperatures averaging 17°C to 20°C (63°F to 68°F). It's the peak tourist season, and you can expect occasional rainfall.
Autumn (September to November): Autumn brings cooler temperatures, ranging from 10°C to 15°C (50°F to 59°F). The city is adorned with beautiful fall foliage, and it's a great time to explore museums and indoor attractions.
Winter (December to February): Winters in Amsterdam are cold, with temperatures averaging around 2°C to 6°C (36°F to 43°F). It's a quieter time to visit, and you can experience the city's cozy ambiance, especially during the festive season.
It's important to note that Amsterdam's weather can be changeable, so it's advisable to pack layers and be prepared for occasional rain showers throughout the year.
Is it easy to get around in Amsterdam?
Yes, Amsterdam is a compact city that is relatively easy to navigate. The city's excellent public transportation system, including trams, buses, and metros, makes it convenient to get around. The OV-chipkaart is a rechargeable card that can be used for all modes of public transport and offers discounted fares compared to purchasing individual tickets.
Cycling is also a popular and efficient way to explore Amsterdam. The city is bicycle-friendly, with well-marked bike lanes and a comprehensive network of cycling routes. You can rent a bike from one of the many rental shops throughout the city.
Amsterdam's city centre is relatively walkable, and many of the main attractions are within proximity to each other. Walking allows you to fully immerse yourself in the city's charm and discover hidden gems along the way.
Where are the best places to stay in Amsterdam?
Centrum: The city centre, known as Centrum, is a popular area for tourists due to its central location and proximity to major attractions. It offers a wide range of accommodation options, from luxury hotels to budget-friendly hostels. The area is vibrant and lively, with a mix of historic buildings, shopping streets, and cultural sites.
Jordaan: Located west of the city centre, the Jordaan neighbourhood is a picturesque and trendy area. It's known for its narrow streets, charming canals, and boutique shops. The neighbourhood offers a mix of stylish hotels, cozy guesthouses, and vacation rentals.
De Pijp: South of the city centre, De Pijp is a vibrant neighbourhood known for its bohemian atmosphere and bustling market, the Albert Cuyp Market. It's a great area for food lovers, with a wide range of restaurants and cafés. De Pijp offers a variety of accommodations, including boutique hotels and apartments.
Oud-West: Situated west of the city centre, Oud-West is a trendy and up-and-coming neighbourhood. It's known for its hip bars, trendy boutiques, and vibrant food scene. Oud-West offers a mix of hotels, guesthouses, and vacation rentals.
Museumkwartier: Located near the Museumplein, the Museumkwartier (Museum Quarter) is an upscale neighbourhood with a concentration of museums, including the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum. It's an elegant area with luxury hotels, fine dining options, and designer boutiques.
Best hotels in Amsterdam:
Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam: This luxury hotel is set in a collection of historic canal houses. It offers elegant rooms, a Michelin-starred restaurant, and a serene garden courtyard.
Hotel Pulitzer Amsterdam: Located within 25 interconnected canal houses, this boutique hotel offers stylish rooms, a cozy bar, and a beautiful inner garden.
The Dylan Amsterdam: Situated in a 17th-century building, The Dylan Amsterdam combines historic charm with modern luxury. It features individually designed rooms, a Michelin-starred restaurant, and a serene courtyard.
Sir Adam Hotel: With its contemporary design and panoramic views of the city, Sir Adam Hotel is a trendy option for modern travellers. It offers stylish rooms, a rooftop bar with stunning vistas, and a lively music venue.
Conservatorium Hotel: Housed in a beautifully restored bank building, the Conservatorium Hotel exudes luxury and sophistication. It features spacious rooms, a spa, multiple dining options, and a prime location near the Museumplein.
Hotel Seven One Seven: This boutique hotel offers an intimate and exclusive experience. Located in a traditional canal house, it provides elegant rooms, personalized service, and a tranquil garden.
Hotel Okura Amsterdam: As one of the city's premier luxury hotels, Hotel Okura Amsterdam boasts spacious rooms with panoramic city views, multiple acclaimed restaurants, a spa, and an indoor pool.
Pulitzer Amsterdam: Combining history and contemporary design, Pulitzer Amsterdam offers unique rooms spread across 25 canal houses. It features a tranquil inner garden, a restaurant overlooking the canal, and a cozy bar.
Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht: This design-forward hotel reflects the city's creative spirit. It showcases modern artwork, spacious rooms, a vibrant bar, and a trendy restaurant in a prime location along the Prinsengracht canal.
Canal House: Situated in a historic canal house, this boutique hotel offers luxurious rooms with a blend of classic and modern design. It provides personalized service, a private garden, and a stylish bar.
Annual festivals in Amsterdam
King's Day: Celebrated on April 27th, King's Day is a national holiday in honour of the Dutch King's birthday. Amsterdam turns into a vibrant sea of orange, with street parties, concerts, and a massive flea market.
Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE): Held in October, ADE is one of the world's largest electronic music festivals and conferences. It features an extensive lineup of DJs and producers performing at various venues across the city.
Amsterdam Light Festival: Taking place from November to January, the Amsterdam Light Festival illuminates the city with stunning light installations and artworks along the canals, creating a magical atmosphere.
Grachten festival: This classical music festival celebrates young talent and takes place in August. Performances are held on stages set up along the city's picturesque canals, providing a unique and enchanting experience.
Holland Festival: Held in June, the Holland Festival is an international performing arts event featuring theatre, dance, music, and visual arts. It showcases innovative and boundary-pushing performances from around the world.
Pride Amsterdam: Celebrating diversity and LGBTQ+ rights, Pride Amsterdam takes place in July and features a colourful canal parade, street parties, cultural events, and concerts.
Tulip Festival: During April, Amsterdam blooms with vibrant tulips. The Tulip Festival showcases numerous locations where you can admire the city's stunning displays of tulips and other spring flowers.
Grachtenrace: In October, the Grachtenrace is a unique rowing race where participants navigate the city's canals, providing a thrilling spectacle for spectators.
Amsterdam Fringe Festival: Showcasing unconventional and experimental performances, the Amsterdam Fringe Festival takes place in September and offers a platform for emerging artists and theatre-makers.
SAIL Amsterdam: Held once every five years, SAIL Amsterdam is a spectacular maritime event that brings together a fleet of impressive tall ships and attracts millions of visitors. It combines maritime heritage with festivities, including parades and nautical activities.
Time difference between the UK and Amsterdam
Amsterdam is in the Central European Time (CET) zone. The time difference between the UK and Amsterdam varies depending on the time of year due to daylight saving time changes. Here are some examples:
During UK Standard Time (October to March), Amsterdam is 1 hour ahead of the UK.
During UK Daylight Saving Time (March to October), Amsterdam is 2 hours ahead of the UK.
It's important to check the current time difference when planning your trip to ensure you arrive on time for any scheduled activities or flights.
Best time to get cheap flights to Amsterdam
The best time to find cheap flights to Amsterdam is typically during the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn. Avoiding the peak summer months and major holidays can help you secure better deals. Additionally, booking your flight well in advance or being flexible with your travel dates can increase your chances of finding lower fares.
Which airlines fly from the UK to Amsterdam and can you fly direct?
Several airlines offer flights from the UK to Amsterdam, both direct and with layovers. Some of the major airlines that fly directly from the UK to Amsterdam include:
- British Airways
- KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
These airlines provide convenient and frequent flights, allowing travellers to choose the option that suits their preferences and budget.
How much is a return flight from the UK to Amsterdam?
The cost of a return flight from the UK to Amsterdam can vary depending on various factors such as the airline, travel dates, booking class, and how far in advance you book. On average, prices can range from £50 to £200 or more for economy class tickets. Fares may increase during peak travel seasons and holidays. It's advisable to compare prices across different airlines and use flight search engines or travel agencies to find the best deals.
How long is a direct and indirect flight to Amsterdam from the United Kingdom?
The duration of a direct flight from the United Kingdom to Amsterdam is relatively short, averaging around 1 hour and 15 minutes. However, flight times may vary depending on the departure airport in the UK and the specific airline.
If you opt for an indirect flight with a layover, the duration will depend on the duration of the layover and the route taken. Layovers can add a few hours to your total travel time, but they may also offer an opportunity to explore another city or break up a long journey.
What are the nearest international airports to Amsterdam?
The nearest international airport to Amsterdam is Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (AMS), located approximately 9 kilometres southwest of the city centre. Schiphol is one of the busiest airports in Europe and serves as a major hub for both international and domestic flights. It offers a wide range of facilities and convenient transport connections to the city centre.
Other nearby international airports that can be used as alternatives include Eindhoven Airport (EIN), located around 100 kilometres south of Amsterdam, and Rotterdam The Hague Airport (RTM), located approximately 60 kilometres southwest of the city.
How to find cheap flights to Amsterdam with flexible booking policies?
When searching for cheap flights to Amsterdam with flexible booking policies, it's recommended to use reputable flight search engines or travel agencies that offer flexible ticket options. One such platform is Travelup.com , which provides a user-friendly interface to search and compare flights from multiple airlines.
Travelup.com also offers the option to filter search results by flexible booking policies, allowing you to find flights with flexible change or cancellation options. This gives you peace of mind and the ability to adjust your travel plans if needed.
Which UK airports can you fly from to Amsterdam?
You can fly to Amsterdam from several airports across the UK. Some of the main airports offering direct flights to Amsterdam include:
- London Heathrow Airport (LHR)
- London Gatwick Airport (LGW)
- London City Airport (LCY)
- Manchester Airport (MAN)
- Birmingham Airport (BHX)
- Edinburgh Airport (EDI)
- Glasgow Airport (GLA)
- Bristol Airport (BRS)
- Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA)
- Newcastle International Airport (NCL)
These airports provide convenient options for travellers from various regions of the UK to fly directly to Amsterdam.
What are the options for Premium Economy, Business, and first class flights from the UK to Amsterdam?
Several airlines offer premium economy, business, and first-class flights from the UK to Amsterdam. Some of the airlines that provide these upgraded travel experiences include:
British Airways: British Airways offers Club Europe (business class) and First Class options on their flights to Amsterdam. These classes provide enhanced comfort, priority services, dedicated lounges, and premium onboard amenities.
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines: KLM offers World Business Class and Europe Business Class options. Passengers traveling in these classes enjoy luxurious seats, gourmet dining, priority services, access to lounges, and additional baggage allowances.
Lufthansa: Lufthansa offers Business Class and First Class cabins on their flights to Amsterdam. These classes provide spacious seating, gourmet dining, access to exclusive lounges, and personalized services.
Air France: Air France offers Business Class and La Première (First Class) options on their flights to Amsterdam. These classes offer exceptional comfort, fine dining, dedicated lounges, and personalized services.
It's important to check with individual airlines for specific offerings, as amenities and services may vary.
What is the baggage allowance for Economy, Premium Economy, Business, and first class?
The baggage allowance for flights from the UK to Amsterdam varies depending on the airline and the class of travel. Here are general guidelines for baggage allowances:
Economy Class: Most airlines offer a standard baggage allowance of around 23 kilograms (50 pounds) for checked baggage and one piece of carry-on luggage with specific weight and size restrictions. It's advisable to check with the airline for their specific policies.
Premium Economy, Business, and First Class: Passengers traveling in these upgraded classes generally enjoy increased baggage allowances. The checked baggage allowance can range from 30 to 40 kilograms (66 to 88 pounds) or more, and additional pieces of carry-on baggage may be permitted.
It's essential to review the baggage policies of the airline you are flying with to ensure compliance with their specific requirements.
Amsterdam is a vibrant and charming destination with a wealth of attractions, cultural experiences, and culinary delights to offer. Whether you're exploring the picturesque canals, immersing yourself in the city's rich history, or indulging in the local cuisine, Amsterdam has something for everyone.
To make your trip more convenient and hassle-free, consider booking your flights through Travelup.com , which offers a wide range of options and flexible booking policies. Don't forget to sign up for the TravelUp Newsletter to stay updated on the latest travel deals and promotions.
So pack your bags, grab your camera, and get ready to embark on an unforgettable adventure in the beautiful city of Amsterdam!