Category: Red Light District

Red Light District in Amsterdam

Amsterdam’s infamous Red Light District. The City is looking for options to reduce the number of “low quality visitors” this old neighborhood attracts. One option under serious consideration: move the prostitutes away from the area. Another possibility: curtail the number of cannabis cafes (“coffeeshops”), close them altogether, or bar sales to non-residents.

The Red Light District in Amsterdam is a major draw for tourists.

There are in fact three such districts, but the downtown neighborhood known as “De Wallen,” or “Rosse Buurt,” is the largest and best known. At peak times it sees some 900.000 visitors per week.

The area is also home to some 8.600 residents and 6.145 households.

Locals sometimes refer to the Wallen as ‘a square mile of misery,’ due to instances of human trafficking, exploitation, other criminal elements, and the nuisance caused by both overtourism and petty criminals.

While many visitors still believe Amsterdam has an ‘anything goes’ policy, the City of Amsterdam is actively looking at curtailing the number of prostitutes, pornography-related businesses, and coffeeshops (cannabis cafes).

Options being discussed include moving prostitutes away from the center of town and closing coffeeshops.

Visiting the Red Light District? See the Red Light Secrets Museum of Prostitution. You’ll learn the story of sex work in the Netherlands. The musesum is located in a former brothel.

You will also want to take a  Guided Walking Tour of the district. Another popular Guided Tour also includes provides details about the area’s coffeeshops.

Browse our collection of articles about the Red Light District:

Amsterdammers tell City officials what they think about Red Light District cleanup efforts

Amsterdam Red Light District Amsterdammers who live in the area affected by Project 1012 — the City’s plans to reduce the number of brothels and coffeeshops in Amsterdam’s downtown area and Red Light District — were invited to have their say during a meeting with city officials.

Many of them feel stigmatized by the suggestion that their businesses are somehow promoting criminality.

Reprieve for some Amsterdam brothels and coffeeshops

Amsterdam Korsjespoorsteeg After closing a number of brothels in the Singel canal area, Amsterdam Alderman Lodewijk Asscher tells the city’s town council no further closures are necessary there.

The closures were part of the ambitious Project 1012, designed to ‘clean up’ Amsterdam’s historic city center. The project has met with increasing resistance from locals and town council members.

Asscher also says that a number of coffeeshops scheduled for closure in the Red Light District will be able to close later than originally planned.