NETHERLANDS

How to Spend a Long Weekend in Amsterdam

Amsterdam, the capital city of the Netherlands, is one of the most famous cities in all of Europe and is known for its endless canals, narrow houses, cycling, coffee shops and the red light district. It’s the perfect city to explore over a long weekend. Below I list 22 things not to be missed on your Amsterdam itinerary.

 

What To See and Do in Amsterdam

  1. Explore the picturesque Jordann Neighbourhood.
  2. Eat until your full at the Food Hallen.
  3. Take the free ferry to the Noord district and cycle ‘route 9.’
  4. Get a selfie at the IAmsterdam sign.
  5. See the Royal Palace in Dam Square.
  6. Admire art at the Van Gogh Museum.
  7. Have a picnic in Vondelpark and enjoy a drink at the beer gardens at Vondelpark3.
  8. Explore the Red Light District at night.
  9. Take a beautiful photo of Zuiderkerk and the canal.
  10. Visit the Sex Museum.
  11. See Amsterdam from above at Westerkerk church (not open on Sundays).
  12. Wander Albert Cuypmarket in the Pjip Neighbourhood.
  13. Eat Dutch tapas at Tolhuistuin.
  14. Visit the hidden inner courts of the historic Begijnhof.
  15. Book tickets months in advance for the Anne Frank Museum (waiting time can be hours).
  16. Enjoy a beer from the famous Brouweijt Brewery whilst overlooking the De Gooyer windmill.
  17. Try caramel stroopwafels (and buy extra to take home).
  18. Visit a famous coffee shop (I hear Bulldogs, Amnesia and The Other Side are good).
  19. Explore all of the canals and bridges – Magere Bridge, Herengracht, Thorbeckeplein and Reguliersgracht to name a few.
  20. Eat the famous Dutch fries at Vleminckx – try them with mayonnaise and satay Sauce. Life changing!
  21. See the tulips at Kirkenhoff.
  22. Spend a few hours in neighbouring town, Haarlem.

 

The train from the airport takes about forty minutes and costs €5.20 each way. A three-day city transport pass for trams, buses and metro costs €15 and as we were camping thirty minutes out of the centre this came in great handy. Amsterdam is a very walkable city with all the sights close to each other ( though we somehow still walked 45km in three days – my feet are now covered in blisters). Amsterdam is known for their bikes though so if you want to be like the locals, hire a bike for the day – the bike roads are super organised and safe.

 

 

Where To Stay

When I went searching for accommodation a few weeks before our trip prices were extortionately high due to it being Kings Day weekend (a fact I didn’t know before booking flights months beforehand). I refused to pay hundreds of euros a night (the price being asked even for hostel dorms) and came close to cancelling our trip altogether, until I found Zeeburg campsite. I highly recommend a stay at Zeeburg. The bathrooms were always clean, the campsite had fantastic amenities including a little grocer filled with amazing stock at very fair prices. It only took thirty minutes by tram to reach the city centre and cost €55 for both of us for three nights – bargain. Also, what a view to wake up to!

 

Amsterdam is an incredibly beautiful city with lots to see and do. I was expecting it to be much sleazier than it was and was pleasantly surprised to see so much culture, history and beauty around every corner. I almost chose to live in Amsterdam over London and now that I have visited I am kicking myself a little as it’s a very livable, cool city.

 

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16 Comments

  • Reply Jitaditya 10/06/2017 at 4:20 pm

    wow, that’s too many options for a weekend! Great ideas. I would actually love to spend a month doing all these. Those tulips, as expected in the Netherlands, are ethereal as ever. I think the first place I will head to is the Van Gogh museum.

  • Reply Mel Butler 09/06/2017 at 7:18 pm

    I have been to Amsterdam a hundred time and I will be back there next week on a press trip. I never knew or read that you can camp there. Zeeburg, sounds like a great idea and a lot of fun to do. Loved your pictures and your post has definitely made me more excited about my trip next week

  • Reply Only By Land 09/06/2017 at 2:53 pm

    I didn’t know about the 3 day transport pass in Amstredam, this will be very useful for trams when the weather is bad! €55 for both of you camping is an amazing deal, I paid more to stay alone each night! You took some wonderful photos of Amsterdam, especially the houses which are so unique to Amsterdam!

  • Reply yukti 08/06/2017 at 8:33 pm

    Beautiful post and very detailed itinerary for long weekend. Colorful houses on narrow canals and tulips are best pictures. Also the picture of french fries in cone is so appealing. Zeeburg campsite looks like money saviour and will definitely go for it as bathrooms are also clean according to your reviews.

  • Reply Bhusha 08/06/2017 at 5:16 pm

    So I actually counted your list. I’ve done 12 of the 22 you’ve listed!!! But I was there for only 1 day.
    Amsterdam in indeed such a gorgeous beautiful place! The camping idea sounds awesome! Hoping to go again and do it!!!

  • Reply Bianca Danise 08/06/2017 at 4:32 pm

    I just took a screenshot of the list you provided for my future Eurotrip! I have a question though, if you don’t mind, how much money would you recommend to bring for let’s say 2nights and 3 days if I were to visit majority of the sites you mentioned?

    • Reply Seven Continents Sasha 08/06/2017 at 6:05 pm

      Most things on this list are free, I think we spent maybe £150 for three days each, maybe less, I can’t quite remember to be honest but we didn’t spend a lot.

  • Reply Julie Cao 08/06/2017 at 3:40 pm

    Amsterdam is so beautiful and your picture shows that, especially the paintings next to the First Coffee Shop. I like how the city is walkable and also cyclist -friendly, so we can save time on public transport and spend more time on exploring and getting to know the place. I am a fan of Anne Frank and I would love to check out the Anne Frank museum on my visit to Amsterdam. I used to watched Anne Frank play when I live in Stratford and am super interested in learning more backgrounds of Anne Frank and her story.

    • Reply Seven Continents Sasha 08/06/2017 at 6:12 pm

      The Anne Frank was super interesting, we did have to line up for almost an hour and a half to get in but I’m really glad we visited, it was very humbling, especially at this time with so much happening in the world.

  • Reply John the Wanderer 08/06/2017 at 3:26 pm

    Isn’t Amsterdam such an awesome place to visit? I did a couple day trips there when I was connecting. I took in a good number of your suggestions. I loved being by the water and on it on one of those boats that ferry you around and provide some history. The photo of street food looks awesome. I loved finding great places like that! I didn’t visit any of those “coffee houses” though as I don’t enjoy smoking. But it is part of the experience. I like how the city has been cleaned up over the past few years so there is not much left in the Red Light District these days.

  • Reply Gingey Bites 08/06/2017 at 3:25 pm

    This round up looks fab and has me wanting to go to Copenhagen! It’s on my wanderlust list! Love the idea of camping to keep costs down too.

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