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Things to do in Amsterdam

Things to do in  Amsterdam

Welcome to Amsterdam

The Netherlands brims with beauty and adventure, from its picturesque windmills and wondrous fields of tulips to its hip, art-centric capital city of Amsterdam. The most populated region of the Netherlands, historic Amsterdam is renowned for its quaint streets and scenic canals. Take in Amsterdam’s rich tradition of art by touring iconic museums such as the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum; tours offer skip-the-line access to these popular sights. The Anne Frank House is another must-see, attracting visitors from around the globe. A walking tour—or if you want to be like the Dutch, a bike tour—is a great way to get into the culture. For a little romance, enjoy a candlelit cruise at night with Dutch wine and cheese, and watch the city sparkle. Make time to tour the happening Red Light District’s bars and coffeeshops, and sample bitterballen (fried meatballs) and classic pickled herring, along with some of the country’s famed beers. Take a day trip or two to the Dutch countryside to admire Zaanse Schans, with its iconic windmills and clogs; or traditional villages such as Volendam and Marken. Keukenhof Gardens offers the pièce de résistance: a burst of colors from its vast array of flowers and millions of tulips. All in all, Amsterdam’s uniqueness makes it an unparalleled destination in Europe.

Top 10 attractions in Amsterdam

#1
Anne Frank House (Anne Frank Huis)

Anne Frank House (Anne Frank Huis)

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The bestselling book “Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl” brought to life one of the greatest horrors of the 20th century in a compelling, personal way. In the true story, a young Jewish girl, her family, and some friends are forced into hiding in Amsterdam to escape the Nazis during World War II. The house that served as the Frank family’s hiding place for two years survived the war and is now a moving museum, with the primary site being the achterhuis (rear house), also known as the secret annex. Here the Franks sat in silence during the day and ate food that was secretly brought to them before being mysteriously betrayed and sent to Nazi concentration camps. Otto Frank, the only Frank who survived the war, published Anne’s now-famous diary in 1947.More
#2
Moco Museum

Moco Museum

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Amsterdam's Modern Contemporary Museum (Moco Museum) features a wide range of inspiring art, including notable exhibits by mysterious British street artist Banksy, surrealist Salvador Dalí, and pop artist Roy Lichtenstein. The Moco Museum primarily features artists who have their own (often ironic) vision and is a privately owned initiative of gallery owners who have worked with renowned artists such as Keith Haring, Andy Warhol, Jean Michel Basquiat, and Picasso. The classic Dutch mansion that houses the museum was designed in 1904 by Eduard Cuypers, cousin of architect Pierre Cuypers, who designed the nearby Rijksmuseum.More
#3
Amstel River

Amstel River

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The Amstel is the great river that runs through Amsterdam and whose water was diverted into the city’s famous canals. The city was first built around the river, giving it the name Amstel Dam, and today the waterway is flows past modern buildings and charming houseboats before winding its way into the Dutch countryside.More
#4
Van Gogh Museum

Van Gogh Museum

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Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum, home to the world’s largest collection of works by the legendary Dutch artist, is a must-see for art and art history lovers. The museum boasts a collection of Vincent van Gogh’s personal effects, plus 200 paintings and 500 drawings by the master and his contemporaries—including Gauguin, Monet, Toulouse-Lautrec, and Bernard—plus Van Gogh’s famous works The Potato Eaters and Wheatfield with Crows.More
#5
Rijksmuseum

Rijksmuseum

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Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum is the largest and most visited art museum in the Netherlands. Its collection, which ranks among the world’s finest, includes nearly 8,000 pieces spread over 80 galleries. Some of the Rijksmuseum’s most revered works are 15th- to 19th-century paintings by Flemish and Dutch masters, including Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Frans Hals. In addition to the astounding eight centuries of Dutch art and history, the museum has extensive outdoor gardens and a Michelin-starred restaurant.More
#6
Zuiderkerk (Southern Church)

Zuiderkerk (Southern Church)

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Built in 1611, the Zuiderkerk (Southern Church) was the city’s first Protestant church and remains one of its most memorable landmarks. The church’s striking facade and distinctive bell tower have been painted by Monet, while Rembrandt reputedly paintedThe Night Watch there.More
#7
Amsterdam Red Light District (De Wallen)

Amsterdam Red Light District (De Wallen)

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Most famous for its streetside brothels, Amsterdam's Red Light District (De Wallen) also houses scenic canals, bustling restaurants, bars, and plenty of shopping opportunities. While this controversial neighborhood may not be for everyone, its winding cobblestone streets and narrow alleys evoke Amsterdam’s rich history and laid-back culture.More
#8
Amsterdam Central Station

Amsterdam Central Station

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Amsterdam Central Station (Amsterdam Centraal Station) is the largest railway station in the Netherlands, as well as the country’s most visited national heritage site. Serving up to 250,000 passengers every day, it’s the city’s most important transport hub, offering both national and international train services.More
#9
Westerkerk (Western Church)

Westerkerk (Western Church)

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Amsterdam’s 17th-century Westerkerk (Western Church) is as known for its architecture, including a spire that measures some 280 feet (85 meters), as it is for its history. Rembrandt was buried here, and in her diaries Anne Frank wrote about the church’s clock chime—one of the few outside-world experiences she had while hiding from the Nazis.More
#10
Hermitage Amsterdam

Hermitage Amsterdam

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An outpost of St. Petersburg’s famous Hermitage Museum, the Hermitage Amsterdam showcases revolving exhibitions of painting and historical artifacts, often with a Russian theme. The sprawling Amstelhof building dates back to the 17th century, stretches along the Amstel riverfront, and features an inner garden courtyard.More

Trip ideas

5 Must-See Amsterdam Museums

5 Must-See Amsterdam Museums

How to Get Off the Beaten Path in Amsterdam

How to Get Off the Beaten Path in Amsterdam

How to Spend 3 Days in Amsterdam

How to Spend 3 Days in Amsterdam

Top Parks and Gardens in Amsterdam

Top Parks and Gardens in Amsterdam

Top activities in Amsterdam

Skip-the-line Van Gogh Museum Amsterdam Private Guided Tour
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Van Gogh Museum Amsterdam & 1-Hour Canal Cruise
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Amsterdam Canal Cruise in Classic River Boat With Drinks & Dutch Cheese
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All inclusive Canal Tour by Captain Jack (Traveller's Choice Award 2021)
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Amsterdam Open Boat Tour With Live Guide and Unlimited Drinks
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Day Trip to Zaanse Schans, Edam, Volendam and Marken from Amsterdam
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The Ultimate Amsterdam Canal Cruise - 2hr - Small Group - Exclusive Boat
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Amsterdam Guided Evening Canal Cruise with Bar on Board
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Skip-the-line Rijksmuseum Amsterdam Guided Museum Tour - Private Tour
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Things to do in Amsterdam this...

Recent reviews from experiences in Amsterdam

star-5
Great boat cruise
Tatsiana_W, May 2022
Amsterdam 1-Hour Canal Cruise from Central Station
Great opportunity to see the main part of Amsterdam.
star-5
Lovely canal cruise
Louise_C, May 2022
Amsterdam Evening Canal Cruise Including Pizza and Drinks
Really enjoyed this canal cruise nice staff on board,got to see a lot if amsterdam.
star-5
Fabulous tour. Fabulous guide
Elaine, May 2022
Absolutely Amsterdam: Tip-Based Walking Tour With Super Local Guide (2,5 Hours)
I was very upset to see members of our group leave after 3 hours without giving him a tip!!
star-4
Long but Informative Day
cavand, May 2022
Rotterdam, Delft and The Hague Full-Day Tour from Amsterdam
The guide was very knowledgeable and listening to him switch from English to Spanish to German was impressive.
star-4
Beautiful sites of...
Lea_E, May 2022
All inclusive Canal Tour by Captain Jack (Traveller's Choice Award 2021)
Really interesting to see the city from the perspective of the water.
star-5
So glad we spent the extra day in Amsterdam,
Anthony_M, May 2022
Private Keukenhof Tulip Fields & Millions of Flower Sightseeing Tour From A'dam
Spent an extra day in Amsterdam in order to see this beautiful site.
star-5
Excellent!!
PatriciaKeefe_D, May 2022
All inclusive Canal Tour by Captain Jack (Traveller's Choice Award 2021)
Wonderful way to see Amsterdam.
star-5
A very lovely way to see...
Celia_B, May 2022
Amsterdam Open Boat Tour With Live Guide and Unlimited Drinks
A very lovely way to see Amsterdam!
star-5
Take the hassle out of a visit to the Gardens
Julie_W, May 2022
Private Skip the Line Keukenhof Gardens and Tulip Fields Trip from Amsterdam
The drive was friendly, spoke excellent English and we learned some local history and about daily life in Amsterdam.
star-5
Canal cruise on a classy boat!
pamela_H, May 2022
Amsterdam Canal Cruise in Classic River Boat With Drinks & Dutch Cheese
Great way to see Amsterdam from the canal!
star-5
Best cruise ever
Tonya_M, May 2022
Amsterdam Open Boat Canal Cruise - Live Guide - from Anne Frank House
Was the best way to see Amsterdam
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Amsterdam by cruiser
Brent_M, May 2022
Amsterdam Open Boat Canal Cruise - Live Guide - from Anne Frank House
Brilliant cruise, Wil and Gys were friendly helpful and very informative, great way to see Amsterdam and learn a little about the city and it’s history Thank you to both of them for a lovely trip
star-4
Great experience
JinZhong_C, May 2022
Bike Tour of Amsterdam's Highlights and Hidden Gems!
Got to see different parts of Amsterdam where it’s not achievable by foot.
star-5
A little quiet time
Lisa_M, May 2022
Amsterdam Countryside Bike Tour Including Cheese Tasting and Clog Demonstration
By far one of my favorite activities from our trip!
star-5
One of the best things to do in Amsterdam!
Alicia_F, May 2022
Amsterdam Canals Small-Group Boat Tour with Captain Jack
Definitely one of the best things to do in Amsterdam!
star-4
Great way to see Amsterdam
Clare_K, May 2022
Bike Tour of Amsterdam's Highlights and Hidden Gems!
A really great way to see parts of Amsterdam I would otherwise have not have visited.
star-5
What a way to add to your Amsterdam visit!!
Patricia_B, May 2022
Zaanse Schans Half Day Tour plus Amsterdam Canal Cruise
The canal cruise allowed us to see Amsterdam from a unique perspective.
star-5
Fabulous Day Trip
TheMdterp, May 2022
Day Trip to Zaanse Schans, Edam, Volendam and Marken from Amsterdam
It was a lovely trip outside of Amsterdam to see different areas of North Holland.
star-5
Fantastic tour guide .
Dawn_A, Apr. 2022
Amsterdam City Bike Tour, the Best Things to See
Cycling around Amsterdam is the perfect way to see it and you’re high up on the bicycles too so you get a great view .
star-5
Fun and informative
Sherri_A, Apr. 2022
Amsterdam Canal Cruise in Classic River Boat With Drinks & Dutch Cheese
It was a delightful way to see and learn about the city.

People Also Ask

What is Amsterdam famous for?

One of Europe’s most-visited cities, Amsterdam encompasses attractions both high-brow and risqué. Travelers are drawn here for the city’s rich history and culture as much as its infamous coffee shops and the Red Light District. It’s also the city of canals, which gives it the nickname of the “Venice of the North.”

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What should I not miss in Amsterdam?

Amsterdam is home to some of the most-treasured artworks in Europe, many of them in the Rijksmuseum alone. Don’t miss Rembrandt’s The Night Watch at the Rijksmuseum; Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the Van Gogh Museum, and Vermeer’s Girl With a Pearl Earring in the Mauritshuis Museum.

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How can I spend 2 days in Amsterdam?

Two days in Amsterdam is enough time to take a boat tour through the canals; explore the Rijksmuseum and Van Gogh Musuem, visit the Anne Frank House, wander around the bohemian Jordaan neighborhood, and relax in charming Vondelpark. In the evening you can take a peek at the Red Light District (De Wallen) on a guided tour.

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How can I spend 3 days in Amsterdam?

With three days to spare in Amsterdam you can thoroughly explore the city’s canals by boat, admire some of the world’s great masterpieces in the Rijksmuseum, visit historic attractions such as the Anne Frank House, and even travel just outside the city to the riverside windmills of Zaanse Schans or tulip fields of Keukenhof.

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Is Amsterdam very expensive?

Yes, like most major western European cities, Amsterdam can be an expensive destination. Hotels are expensive and admission fees for museums and other attractions are typically on the higher side. However you can easily save money by walking or taking public transport rather than using taxis and dining away from the touristy areas.

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Is Amsterdam a dangerous place?

No. Amsterdam is no more dangerous than other major European cities. Pickpocketing is the most common crime against tourists so it pays to keep your wits about you. As for Amsterdam’s notorious side, don’t smoke outside of coffeeshops and book a guided tour if you want to explore the Red Light District after dark.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
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