Amsterdam offers visitors an array of majestic sights to choose from, all of which can be best explored by canal cruise, bike or on foot. Hire a bike and take a tour around the city, then hop off at one of the many stunning canals this amazing city has to offer. If you’re looking to explore authentic Dutch shops, take a trip over to De Negen Straatjes, consisting of nine cobbled streets which are peppered with original boutiques, ornate trinkets and independent shops.
The Anne Frank House is easily one of the most iconic locations to be found anywhere in Amsterdam. Once home to the brave girl the house is named after, it has become a museum dedicated to her memory, with the Anne Frank Foundation being established in 1957 to protect the property. Since then, this small apartment block has become one of the must-see attractions for tourists from all over the world.
Visitors can receive an audio tour, which guides them around the building and providing information on Anne and her life. Inside the house, you can see models of how it was constructed to hide the Frank family in the Second World War, along with original documentation and artefacts. There are also very rare photographs and quotations from Frank’s diary on the walls.
This is a very moving and historical location, offering visitors a unique experience. It is recommended that you book tickets in advance, though, as queues are known to be lengthy.
Amsterdam’s Centraal Station is the largest train station to be found anywhere in the city and is used by over 160,000 passengers every day. This magnificently Gothic building is a breathtaking sight to behold and dates back to 1889 when the line was first opened.
The building features very detailed architecture and statues that anyone who’s interested in Amsterdam’s historic buildings just can’t afford to miss seeing. It is conveniently located near the canals so visitors can enjoy a barge ride along Amsterdam’s waterways upon arrival in the city.
There are also various shops and places to eat within the station, so if you are travelling by train, you can ensure you have had something to eat before your journey. Centraal Station is a stylish and scenic way of getting from the airport to the city centre, too, if you have just arrived in the country. The airport has great transport links to the station.
Dam Square in Amsterdam is one of the most pivotal locations of the entire city, hosting many well known events and being the home of many famous buildings. This includes the National Monument, which is another must-see attraction in Amsterdam.
Several tram lines call at Dam Square, providing convenient access from anywhere in the city. If you are visiting Amsterdam at Christmas time, you should make sure you visit Dam Square to attend the funfair which is held there every December. However, the funfair does return several times each year at various intervals.
Dam Square is also home to a great deal of restaurants and cafes, so you can call in at one, enjoy a delicious meal and watch the world go by in the square. It is very handy for local museums and makes an ideal meeting place if you are planning on meeting up with other people once you get to Amsterdam.
Emperor’s Canal, or Keizersgracht as it is known in Dutch, is the widest of the three major canals in Amsterdam’s city centre. It was named after the Holy Roman mporer, Maximilian I.
Whether you want to take a stroll alongside Emperor’s Canal or actually take a trip on it, these waters guide you along some of the city’s most beautiful streets. Take in the spectacular mansions that are located either side of the canals and truly appreciate the unique Dutch architecture.
Barge tours are available to be booked, giving you the chance to learn more about the canal and surrounding buildings. Restaurants and bars are located close by, so if you prefer, you can pick a spot you like and watch the world go by as you enjoy a drink and something to eat. If you can stay around until the evenings, you will see the magical street lights and lights over the bridges light up, illuminating the waters for a truly unique sight.
Herengracht is the first of three major canals to be found in the city centre of Amsterdam. Located in a very trendy area of the city, you can take a boat ride down Herengracht to see the absolutely stunning double-fronted mansions that overlook the waters and immerse yourself in the sheer beauty of Amsterdam’s buildings.
Herengracht is a glorious sight to behold at any time of the day or year. Even if you are visiting Amsterdam in the middle of winter, the fog that can set around the canal is gorgeous and mysterious. Similarly, the view is delightful in the summertime, when the sunlight glistens off the water.
Close to the Herengracht are various hotels, which offer equally fantastic views of the canal and the city. A range of restaurants, bars and eateries are also located nearby, giving you the chance to enjoy a delicious meal right by the water. Dining by Amsterdam’s canals really is an experience like no other.
The National Monument can be found in Dam Square, one of the most famous locations in all of Amsterdam. It attracts visitors from all over the world every day and has become an essential stop on most holidaymakers’ agendas when they visit Amsterdam.
Designed by Oud, the famous Durch architect, the National Monument was erected in 1956 as a World War II monument. Every year, the National Remembrance of the Dead ceremony is held at the monument to remember the casualties the Second World War. Standing tall at 72 ft, it is an impressive sight to behold and one that you can go right up to and study in-depth for yoursel.
The National Monument is now wheelchair accessible and has been listed as a national heritage site, confirming its significance to Amsterdam’s history. Visitors can sit on the seats surrounding the monument and study the lion statues that are close by.
The Oude Kerk, otherwise known as the “old church”, is Amsterdam’s oldest building and oldest parish church. The building dates as far back as 1213, meaning Christians from all over the world make a trip to Amsterdam just to see this building.
However, whatever your faith, you can still visit to appreciate the true beauty of this incredibly historic and significant building. While it has naturally undergone renovations during the past 800 years, the Oude Kerk retains its original beauty and contains information for visitors from around the globe to learn more about it.
Covering over 36,000 sq ft, there is plenty to be explored, from the beautiful stain glass windows to the graveyard, which has over 2,500 graves of 100,000 Amsterdam citizens, including the likes of Rembrandt’s wife and several naval heroes.
Any history buff who is visiting Amsterdam cannot afford to miss out on paying a visit to Rijksmuseum. The national museum is dedicated to Amsterdam’s arts and history. Located at the Museum Square in the Amsterdam South borough, it is also very close to the Van Gogh Museum and the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.
Visitors can spend hours in the Rijksmuseum and still have more exhibits to see. In fact, there are more than one million objects in the Rijksmuseum’s collection, all of which are dedicated to arts, crafts and history, from the years 1200 to 2000.
More than 2,000 paintings can be viewed fro the Dutch Golden Age; these include works of art by the likes of Frans Hals, Rembrandt and Jacob van Ruisdael. A more obscure artefact is the stern of HMS Royal Charles, captured in the Raid on the Medway in 1667. The Rijksmuseum Research Library is also located here, which is the largest public art history library in The Netherlands.
The iconic river that runs through the centre of Amsterdam offers fantastic views of the city’s buildings, and provides you with a panoramic view of the Amsterdam’s points of interest. It is little wonder that The Amstel has been the subject of many of the world’s most-famous artists, including Rembrandt and Aert van der Neer.
The Amstel runs for 19 miles, so boat trips abound on this waterway, allowing you to experience The Netherlands like never before. The Amstel makes for a photographer’s dream; it doesn’t matter whether you are taking a tour down the river or are just strolling alongside it on the road, the waters are very photogenic.
Located alongside the river is an abundance of bars and restaurants, so why not call in for a meal and enjoy the delightful sights and sounds of Amsterdam’s most iconic river? If you visit in the evening, you have the privilege of seeing the city lights illuminate the waters.
Vondelpark is 120 acres of beauty that can be located in Amsterdam. This public urban park is the perfect place to come to take a leisurely stroll and relax in the natural beauty of The Netherlands. Originally opened in 1865, the park has remained a haven of peace and tranquillity for visitors from all over the world.
Visitors can lay beside the beautiful ponds, take a picnic or enjoy the many facilities that Vondelpark has to offer. There is an open-air theatre, which runs shows from June until August, including contemporary music, classical music, dance, theatre and cabaret.
Vondelpark is even home to one of Pablo Picasso’s statues, The Fish, which was erected in 1965. There are various gardens within the park, including a gorgeous rose garden, and the pathways are also popular with cyclists, who enjoy a relaxing ride in the sun. This is the perfect place to bring the whole family to chill out.