Discover Amsterdam

Bike the Vondelpark, where locals enjoy picnics, open-air concerts and flower displays.

A former world centre and leading financial hub, today the Dutch capital exudes a relaxed and unassuming character, welcoming attitude, liberal outlook and healthy acceptance of counter-culture. 

The best way to experience the compact city is by bike. You won’t be alone. Almost half of the city’s population ride on a daily basis. Uncover Amsterdam’s gems on your own, or as part of a guided tour. Special bicycle traffic lights and lanes make cycling around the metropolis safe and fun.

Cruise Amsterdam's storied canals for a close-up of merchant houses from the Golden Age. Bike the Vondelpark, where locals enjoy picnics, open-air concerts and flower displays. Cycle to Museumplein and stop to learn about local history at the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum and Stedelijk Museum.  

Cycle through the historical centre of Dam Square, past the Royal Palace and the National Monument, to the world’s most famous red-light district, de Wallen. Some of Holland’s most story-book picturesque castles, tulip fields, windmills and dykes can all also be reached by bike from the city centre. 

Another memorable way to experience the city is by boat. Formerly reserved exclusively for royals, canal cruises are now Amsterdam’s most popular tourist attraction. Home to more than 100 kilometres of meandering olive green channels, the city was built to be seen from the water.

Enlist on a day cruise, night cruise, dinner cruise or cocktail cruise and explore the city’s 400-year old World Heritage Listed Canal Belt, floating past Amsterdam’s famous slanted houses, buzzing coffee houses and quaint bridges.  

After a long day cruising the canals and the streets, Amsterdam’s food scene entices with a plethora of world-class gastronomic experiences. Grand cafes fringe the banks of the historic canals. Cheese shops, delis, snack stalls and breweries proudly highlight local food specialities. Bars, pubs and coffee shops provide lively all-hour settings. While Michelin Star restaurants dot the city, offering sensation dining experiences.

Words by Alice Nash - Published 15 July 2013
Quick Facts 
Population Approx. 830,000
Time Zone GMT +2 hours
Languages Dutch (official language)
Currency Euro
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