ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Amsterdam Guide - Top 10 Tips

Updated on March 7, 2013

10 Things to do in Amsterdam besides Smoking Pot

Contrary to Pulp Fiction lore, there’s more to Amsterdam than hash bars. Coffeeshops are the main attraction 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 Gouch 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

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.

6) Shop for treasures

Walk the famous 9 streets (, to pick up cutting edge fashion and eclectic wares.

Don’t miss Lady Day, which sells vintage and secondhand European fashion for a steal. Browse for a designer fragrance like Creed at Skins Cosmetics, investigate the Paul Frank Store, and get pampered at Spoiled, where you’ll be custom matched to a designer pair of jeans.

7) Do it like the Dutch

Nothing says typically Dutch better than a hunk of Gouda stuffed in a fresh bread roll.

Savor this ritual by picking up a sandwich at Broodje van Kootje (Spui 28). Grab a newspaper at the Athenaeum bookstore across the way, and plunk yourself down on a bench in the square.

For another Dutch favorite, visit the Pannekoekenhuis, a tiny upstairs restaurant on the second floor of a narrow canal house. Dive into big pancakes, served sweet or savory.

8 ) Indulge, Indonesian style

A former colony of the Netherlands, Indonesia now occupies Amsterdam, in terms of cuisine.

The rice table (a smorgasbord of dishes) is the name of the game but you can opt for the Nasi Goreng (fried rice) at Sie Joe.

For something more upscale, consider Tempoe Doloe, on the boutique-lined street, Utrechtsestraat or Puri Mas, located in the entertainment district of Leidseplein.

9) While the day away in a café

At Café Zeezicht (Hoofdweg 456), people watch on the outdoor terrace, sipping a Dutch style latte and nibbling on the best apple tart in town. Brown cafes, named for their wooden interiors, are good for mingling with the locals.

Cafes not to miss: De Balie, Café De Tuin (Tweede Tuindwarsstraat 13), and Café ‘t Smalle (Egelantiersgracht 12).

10) Walk it

Start at the eastern end of the Albert Cuyp street market in the ethnically diverse neighborhood De Pijp.

Peruse Dutch treats like fish, cheese, and chocolate among 300 stalls. Take a right on Ferdinand Bolstraat, then a left on Stadshouderkade.

Take a right at Spiegelgracht for a stroll in the antique district. Turn left onto Herengracht to see splendid 17th century canal houses. Make a right at Leidsestraat and go up to Singel.

Hit the Singel lunch Café (Singel 404) for homemade soups and baguette sandwiches.

Hotels in Amsterdam

There are many different types of accommodation options in Amsterdam, form hotels, bed and breakfast to luxury and boutique hotels Amsterdam.

Shop around online to find the best deals.

Use hotel review sites like Trip Advisor to see what other people think of the Amsterdam accommodation you are looking at staying in.

Also remember to sort out travel insurance before you go!

Finally, I hope you found this useful and enjoy your stay in Amsterdam.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Hmmm..I thought Lux was terrible..i think there are new places now, no?

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Indonesian Cuisine is it now? But I must admit, the cafes are good for the afternoon.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)