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I loved, loved, loved Amsterdam, and it’s most definitely a place that should be added to your bucket list if it’s not already. Make sure to print the Netherlands bucket list at the bottom of this post!.
Amsterdam is famous for having more bikes than people, beautiful canals, their red light district, and weed.
First of all, see where you are staying and figure if it’s worth buying a day-pass if you will be riding around Amsterdam or not. A good way of know if you are is if you’re staying close to the DAM. If so, it means that you’ll be walking more than using the tram. If you’re 20 min or more walking from the DAM, maybe you want to consider a day pass.
If you opt for this, there are two types that you may be interested. The all around Amsterdam, that costs €21 for and includes trains, buses, and trams, or €12 day pass that is available when you enter the tram.
When riding the tram, please note two important things:
→ You need to check in and check out every time you use it
→ There is specific doors for entering and specific for the exit. They’ll get mad if you get in the wrong one.
Here is the list of things that you should do, and in this order is the best way and times to do them.
Also crucial to make the distinction between cafe, coffee bar, and coffee shop.
At the cafe you buy beer, at coffee bar you buy coffee, coffeeshop you buy weed.
1. Visit the I amsterdam sign
If you go early, you won’t get a crowd. I mean 8 am you won’t regret it.
2. Walk around the canals and find a Dutch pancake shop
You cannot miss the pancakes! I’ve never had some like these before. I tried the apple and cheese. Yup, cheese.
3. Do the free walking tour
This walking tour is fantastic. I did it with Jeremiah, who is originally from San Francisco, and he knows his stuff! Highly recommend as he will take you to all the places you need to know, let you try cheese and give you useful guidance in general.
4. Go to the Cheese Museum
Close to the final stop from the walking tour, there is the cheese museum, go in, eat a bunch of samples, and head downstairs to the free museum, and play with the photo booth!
5. Visit Anne Frank’s museum
Ok, Anne Frank’s house is one if not the most popular attraction. Meaning, long lines. The entry works in two ways, either you get an online ticket with a time slot between 10 am and 3 pm. Or you can make line and buy a ticket on the spot between 3:30 pm and 8 pm. If you weren’t lucky enough to get an online ticket, I’d recommend starting making line around 2:30 pm. The entry doesn’t start until 3:30, but even getting there an hour earlier, in the winter, I didn’t go in until almost 4:30. And the line behind me was brutal.
6. Distract yourself and have dinner or walk around
To be quite honest, it pretty shocking to go through the house, and if you’ve read the book, you most definitely need some time to rest your mind. At least I did, I teared up as I walked by the house. And I could not start my night or have any other fun without resting for some time, so try to enjoy dinner.
7. Visit the prostitution museum
Quite a bit of a different museum, but is worth it! Go with an open mind and learn a lot from it. Have fun taking pictures!
8. Walk around red light district
Now that you know everything about the profession walk around!
9. Finish your day in a cafe or coffeeshop
Because you deserve it.
1. Visit the Van Gogh Museum
I didn’t get to do this, after being 7 days traveling I needed to catch up on some sleep. But you have plenty of time to do so, as it’s an average of 1.5 hours spent on the museum.
2. Take a tour to see a Netherland village and windmills
I used Gray Line for this tour, pretty much the only thing they do is get you to a little town 30 minutes away called Zaanse Schans. Departing from in front of the Victoria Hotel, near the central station.
In this town, you get to learn about how the clogs are made! Pretty fantastic, go for beautiful walks, go inside of the windmills, try some stroopwafels, and more cheese!.
3. Take a canal cruise
The bus comes back to exactly where you grabbed it, and it’s perfect to catch a canal cruise right there. You’ll be offered multiples, from tours, or your hotel/hostel, but I just took the cheapest I found. And it was quite great.
4. Rent a bike
Wander through the city and the canals! is the best way to see it. There are few rental places; green bikes had a selection of them.
Make sure you get to do all the amazing to do in the netherlands in a short time.
Print this bucket list !