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8

(mostly) Free

Things to Do in

Amsterdam

Amsterdam

Amsterdam

Great

COVID-19

Due to the worldwide pandemic, please check for destination travel restrictions prior to visiting/booking

Amsterdam is a bustling tourist city with something for everyone. Right off the train it was clear that Amsterdam is a popular party destination. The streets were packed with jovial people and the scent of ... well ... a party. One thing we noticed during our stay in the Netherlands is that biking is dominant on the streets. Crossing the road meant dodging bikes, trams, buses, cars and other pedestrians. The flat topography made it easy for biking and walking and the many canals added to the pulse of the city.

Free

  • Wander through Vondelpark, which is Amsterdam’s version of Central Park. There is greenspace, walking paths and playgrounds.

  • Visit Bloemenmarkt, a floating market featuring tulips, bulbs and other garden decorations with nearby shops for cheese tasting and other treats

  • Watch the street performers in the bustling city center and Museumplein

  • Take a free Amsterdam walking tour (they work off tips). Check for a schedule, but historically they start at 11:15am and 1:15 pm and leave from the National Monument at Dam Square.

  • Visit the Amsterdam Public Library (OBA) for an great view of the city from the top floor.

Worth the Money

  • Eat a Stroopwafel. We ate at the famous van Wonderen Stroopwafels - the Dutch answer to Belgian waffles. Two thin, round waffles with a carmel syrup filling dipped in chocolate with your choice of topping. Warm and gooey right off the griddle!

  • Visit the Anne Frank House. Be sure to book tickets online well in advance during the busy season

  • Take a canal cruise to see the sights and learn some Amsterdam history.

Tips for Visiting

  • Take a day trip to Leiden, Netherlands (free on with a rail pass). We went on a windmill tour, visited De Burcht along the Rhine River for great views of the city. We ate at Dende which had a great location right on the canal with an amazing goat cheese, honey and pecan grilled focaccia sandwich. We enjoyed every minute of this quintessential European canal city with tons of charm

  • The intimidating number of locals on bikes made us think twice about doing bike tour or renting bikes.

  • Tram tickets can be bought for an hour (3.20) or 24 hours (8 euros for adults and 4 for kids) right on the tram with a credit card.

  • Trams come frequently and an app is available to help navigate.

  • The Albert Heijn grocery stores in Amsterdam do not require cash.

  • We did not need cash in Amsterdam but we did run across a tourist store that had a 12 euro minimum for using a credit card.

  • You do not need to book a tour to see windmills.  You can get to the popular Zaanse Schans area or Leiden with the eurail pass. The trains come frequently and no reservation is needed.

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