- Take a canal tour
Glass-topped tour boats provide cruises through Amsterdam’s canals and harbor. In fact, you may want to take more than one tour. The various tourboat companies follows different routes through the system of canals. During the tour, information is provided in English, Dutch, French and German.
- Rent a bicycle
Various bike-rental companies cater to tourists by not only renting bikes, but by also providing several tours in and around Amsterdam. It is a good idea to take a least one such guided tour before you strike out on your own. That way you get used to the traffic, learn the basic traffic rules, and learn how to cross the tram rails without twisting your bike’s wheels into a pretzel shape.
- Visit the Anne Frank House
Yes, it’s sobering – and unforgettable. (Actually – and most tourist guides won’t tell you this – those in the know prefer to visit the Corrie ten Boom Museum in nearby Haarlem instead. Corrie ten Boom’s story is every bit as dramatic as that of Anne Frank.)
- Take a walk through the Jordaan area
Home to the Anne Frank House, the Westerkerk, galleries, impromptu gardens and a plethora of unique shops, this is Holland’s most-sung about neighborhood. Have plenty of film or digital storage on hand, for this is Amsterdam’s most picturesque district.
- See the Rijksmuseum
Or the Van Gogh Museum, the Amsterdam Historical Museum, the Biblical Museum or any of about 40 additional museums.
- Tour the Red Light District
The area has more to offer than just prostitution, sex shops and live theatre shows (don’t ask…). The oldest part of Amsterdam is home to many 16th, 17th and 18th century gabled houses. Then there’s the popular Nieuwmarkt (New Market) square, which borders the Chinese quarter. You’ll also find lots of cafés and some fine restaurants.
- Visit a Coffee Shop
Go ahead. It’s legal. Remember, in Holland a “Coffee House” (Koffie Huis) serves coffee, sandwhiches and the like. A Coffee Shop, on the other hand, is a place where you can legally buy and use soft drugs. Most coffee shops also serve excellent coffee and/or health food and freshly-squeezed fruit juices. Some also serve alcohol, but the city’s rulers are trying to change that…
- See the Albert Cuyp Market
This world-famous street market offers just about anything and everything. An added benefit is that it is located in the very popular “De Pijp” district – a multicultural neighborhood that is home to countless boutiques, eateries, and outdoor cafés.,
- Visit the Concertgebouw
This beautiful concert hall is world renowned for its perfect accoustics.
See also: Amsterdam for free: Special and often hidden sightseeing attractions for nothing.
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