Tourism in the Netherlands was up 9% in 2018. That’s the biggest increase in 12 years.
It’s about time more people start planning a trip to Amsterdam. It’s got something for everyone and is one of the most tourist friendly places in Europe.
Read on for some Amsterdam travel tips to make your trip unforgettable.
Invest in an I Amsterdam Card
You can save a ton of money on transit, entry into museums and food by getting an I Amsterdam city pass card.
You choose whether you want a card that is valid for one, two, three, four or five days. Depending on how long you’ll be in the city, try to plan your excursions into under five days to save cash.
With the card, you’ll enjoy free entry into over 30 top Amsterdam attractions including the Amsterdam castle, Rijksmuseum, and Johan Cruijff Stadium.
You’ll get unlimited public transit including trams, buses, metros, boats and a free canal cruise. Many local restaurants also offer a discount when you show your card.
A one-day card for adults costs €64. The five-day card costs €134.
No need to activate the card for using the transit, the first time you hop on, the card is automatically activated.
Enjoy Amsterdam at your own pace and see as much as you possibly can for one low price. This is one of the best tips you should consider when traveling to Amsterdam.
Go Shopping on The Nine Streets
The famous De Negen Straatjes (The Nine Streets) is home to over 200 retailers that you can shop at. You can shop until you drop here!
There’s a variety of boutiques, specialty shops, and vintage stores. No matter what you’re looking for, you’ll find it at the nine streets.
The nine streets are conveniently located at the main canals between Leidsegracht and Raadhuisstraat.
Bring Your Own Reusable Bag
Whether you plan to go shopping or not, carry your own reusable tote bag with you wherever you go.
You never know where you’ll find the perfect artisan soap or Amsterdam keepsake.
In the Netherlands, all shops and stores charge up to €0.10 a bag, even for chains like Forever 21. That costs adds up and it’s not worth it.
Carry your own bag and it will for sure be much more sturdy than the thin plastic one that you’ll be forced to pay for.
Spend Some Time at Museumplein
Whether you are an art aficionado or not, you’ll love Museumplein. There is so much to see because, inside Museumplein, you’ll discover the Van Gogh Museum and the Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art and Rijksmuseum.
Connecting all three art museums is an open area full of outdoor markets, a wading pool, vendors and exhibitions. During the cold months, the plaza is a giant skating rink.
It’ll be hard to see everything in just one day but at least spend an afternoon enjoying the cultural beat of Amsterdam. Plus, it’s free with your I Amsterdam card.
Expect it to Rain
You’re in Amsterdam. You need to get ready for rain. Even if it’s raining when you set out, chances are that it will rain at some point while you’re out.
Avoid being soaked and uncomfortable and always carry an umbrella. The worst thing is spending a day sightseeing with wet socks.
Make sure you pack wisely.
Some people throw a pair of flip flops in their backpack and change into them if it starts to rain. Then you can get into your dry socks once the weather’s calmed down.
Or just wear good, waterproof walking shoes every day.
Park Outside of Amsterdam
If you are driving to Amsterdam, you can save some big bucks by parking outside of Amsterdam.
In Amsterdam, parking can cost up to 10 euros per hour. It’s wise to park outside of the city and take affordable public transport into the center.
When you’re almost in Amsterdam, look for “P+R” signs. You’ll only pay around one euro an hour.
Take A Canal Cruise
You can’t take an Amsterdam trip, without taking a canal cruise.
Amsterdam’s canal belt traces its roots back to the 1600s. The view from a boat on the canal is breathtaking. By day or by night, you’ll love the sights.
If you want to enjoy some food and wine, you can opt for a candlelit cruise at night. Or, go during the day for a sightseeing tour that you can hop on and off whenever you want.
A Coffeeshop is Not for Coffee
Don’t wander into one of Amsterdam’s coffee shop looking for a quiet place to drink a coffee and read the newspaper.
In Amsterdam, you can legally buy and use marijuana for recreational purposes. Learn more about marijuana before you go.
In coffee shops you can buy all kinds of weed sold in joints or by the gram. If you’re interested, there are several ganja walking tours that will teach you how to roll a joint and take you to a few coffee shops you can explore.
Watch Out for Cyclists
Amsterdam is home to more bikes than humans. It’s one of the most accessible cities in the world on pedals.
That means that you need to be careful when crossing the road. Look both ways, twice!
As a tourist, it’s normal to want to stop and take a photo or look up at some magnificent architecture, but when you do, do it safely.
Don’t stand in the road. And never walk in the dark red bike lanes.
Get Ready for Your Trip to Amsterdam
Thanks for reading. We hope these tips will help you have an incredible trip to Amsterdam in the near future.
Remember, if you are prepared for the weather and invest in an I Amsterdam, you could easily have the best holiday of your life in Amsterdam.
Ready to explore more of Europe? Check out this ultimate guide to planning an epic Italian adventure.