Amsterdam is a unique city. It’s canals and gabled houses give an historic elegance, plus a wealth of galleries and museums, fine dining and a buzzing nightlife, make it an ideal city break destination.
For the perfect introduction, why not take a canal boat tour or perhaps hire a bicycle, it’s the ideal way to see the city.
What to see..
Amsterdam is home to a number of world famous museums, which make it perfect if you are looking for a cultural short break. Visit the Vincent Van Gogh museum and browse more than 200 paintings and 500 drawings by Van Gogh and his contemporaries.
The Rijksmuseum is Amsterdam’s largest and most popular museum, the central attraction being the collection of 17th-century Dutch Masters, featuring canvases from some of the finest artists in history, including Rembrandt and Vermeer.
No visit to Amsterdam would be complete without a trip to Anne Frank’s House to relive the moving story of Anne Frank and her family who hid in a secret annex during World War Two.
If you’re up for more, try the Stedelijk Museum, which has by far the best collection of modern art in the country.
If you feel like you have had enough of museums, then there is Amsterdam’s infamous Red Light District…definitely an eye-opener and not for the faint hearted!
There are also a number of beautiful parks, a highlight is the Vondelpark.
Food & Drink
Feast on local cuisine, there are plenty of great restaurants and cafes to serve you with traditional Dutch delicacies, such as: Bitterballen, Spekdik and Frikandel. Gouda and Edam are the best known cheeses, but there are plenty of others to sample. For pudding, select applegebak, traditional Dutch apple pie, or find a pancake house or poffertjes stall, selling light, fluffy mini pancakes with choice of toppings.
A legacy of the Netherlands’ colonial past is the rijsttafel, a feast of up to 25 Indonesian dishes served together with rice. Wash it down with a lass of pils or wheat beer, and don’t forget to try a Jenever or Dutch gin.
The nightlife in Amsterdam is notorious. The city is home to many vibrant restaurants, throbbing clubs, strip shows, “brown” bars, coffee shops, cinemas and theatres as well as traditional Dutch pubs.
Amsterdam is great for browsers. The city has not yet been taken over by high street chains and offers a great choice of independent boutiques.There are plenty of souvenirs opportunities: a pair of clogs, some pretty Delftware, a bottle of Jenever or perhaps even a diamond from the diamond factory!
At the flower market or at the Keukenhof, you can order bulbs to be shipped home.
There are flights to Amsterdam from over 30 airports in the UK and Ireland, so getting away has never been easier.