Though Amsterdam is a relatively small city, it has many distinctive neighborhoods, each with their own look, character, and pace.
Most tourists remain in the center of town, though many also visit a section of the Old South neighborhood, where the Vondelpark and the Museum Quarter are located.
Savvy tourists also explore the other parts of Amsterdam.
Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum contains the largest collection of paintings by Vincent van Gogh in the world.
With 2.16 million visitors in 2018, it is second most-visited museum not just in Amsterdam — but in the entire country of the Netherlands.
We provide details about the collection, along with information about the current temporary exhibition: Hockney — Van Gogh.
Also: Details about this summer’s Exhibition Van Gogh and the Sunflowers
NOTE: No ticket sales at the door. You can only visit the museum after buying timed-entry tickets online. We show you how and where.
On August 10, 1943, Anne Frank — hiding in the Achterhuis — wrote, “We’ve all been a little confused this past week, because our dearly beloved Westertoren bells have been carted off to be melted down for the war, so we have no idea of the exact time, either night or day…”
So, whatever happened to the bells of the Westertoren?
There is no age limit to visit Amsterdam’s Red Light District, which after all is a residential neighborhood. However, there are legal minimum age limits for prostitutes and their clients
Plus: while prostitution is a legal profession in the Netherlands, human trafficking also takes place. There is a hotline where you can report crime anonymously.
Built on 13,659 wooden piles, Amsterdam’s Royal Palace on Dam Square — which started life as the city’s Town Hall — was once described as the world’s Eight Wonder.
Though the palace is at the disposal of the Royal House, most of days of the year it is open to visitors.
Founded sometime in the 14th century for the Beguines, members of a lay Catholic sisterhood, the Begijnhof is one of Amsterdam’s oldest inner courtyards — and one of the city’s best known landmarks.
Even taking into account the effects of mass tourism, the Begijnhof remains for the most part a haven of peace and tranquility in the busy center of medieval Amsterdam.
Amsterdam’s Red Light District is home to a bronze statue in honor of prostitutes around the world.
Situated in front of the Old Church, the oldest building in the city, it is the first and only such monument anywhere.
A’DAM Lookout is Amsterdam’s only publicly accessible observation deck.
It provides spectacular, 360° panoramic views of Amsterdam and surroundings.
Plus: are you brave enough to take a ride in Europe highest swingset? You’ll swing right over the edge, 20 stories above the ground!
Located in a former church, Paradiso is known as Amsterdam’s Pop Temple — one of Holland’s foremost live music venues.
It offers an eclectic mix of music: jazz, fusion, garage, ska, latin, funk, soul… The hall has been filled with Maroccan dance music, an Elvis Presley Church Service, and even some contemporary classical music.
The Nieuwmarkt is one of Amsterdam’s most popular squares, dominated by a castle-like former city gate.
The square is lined by two dozen cafés, restaurants and coffeeshops, and has a relaxed, family-friendly atmosphere.
Damrak is the main street that leads from Amsterdam Central Station, where most tourists arrive, to Dam square in the center of the medieval town.
This lively street, lined with centuries-old monuments, so-so bars, and gaudy souvenir shops, Damrak — which is in the middle of a makeover — offer a preview of what Amsterdam has to offer.