Long story short, my SO and I were in a long distance relationship. He lived in Amsterdam and I visited as often as I could. And this is the sorty of me falling in love with Amsterdam.
First of all I’d like to clarify that the past tense is not because we broke up, but because WE MOVED IN TOGETHER.
And just now that the stress of moving is behind us and we settled in, I started to realize that I miss Amsterdam. And not just because my partner constantly reminds me how much better it is than Vienna (where we’re living currently).
I, also became quiet fond of the city.
The best (and well the only good) thing that came out from our long distance relationship is that I could see the many faces of Amsterdam.
None of them disappointed.
Full disclosure though: I had the opportunity to explore Amsterdam as a place to live and I could go beyond the usual tourist traps as I was guided by true(ish) locals. 🙂
So without further ado, let’s see what to see in the capital of The Netherlands!
The best reasons to visit Amsterdam in…
The countless small bridges and canals, the narrow streets and the unique architecture all make Amsterdam truly beautiful. Add the golden leaves filling the streets and what you get is magic.
There are more than 40,000 trees on the streets of Amsterdam so you can probably imagine the vibrant cloud of color.
No one likes places crowded with noisy and annoying tourists. Even more so in Amsterdam because the city itself is quiet small and the streets are narrow. So if you really wanna see more of Amsterdam, let the summer and the holiday season pass, you won’t regret it.
The traditional dutch pubs are called brown bar or brown café (bruin café). They are essential part of the city’s culture and the perfect place to meet locals.
It’s a MFing Fairy Tale
When you imagine those perfect winter postcards with white snow, pretty streets, and cozy lights… that’s Amsterdam.
Someone appreciate this reference. Please.
Lights on, baby
The city’s answer for the darkest months of the year: Amsterdam Light Festival. Each year artists from around the globe create elaborate light displays on the streets of Amsterdam.
Pro tip: book a boat ticket and experience this season’s highlight while cruising the canals.
Although spring was the season when I saw the least of the city (because ya know… world pandemic and whatnot) I still collected some good stuff for you.
How could I write a travel guide about Amsterdam without mentioning the tulips, The Netherlands most famous exports? You will find a crazy amount of wonderful bouquets on the marketplaces of Amsterdam but the real experience is to go to a tulip field and see the endless sea of colors yourself.
Pro Tip: With 7 million flower bulbs bloom over 32 hectares Keukenhof Garden near Amsterdam is a real feast for the senses.
Dress orange and go crazy
Fuck music festivals, the King’s Day is where it’s at. Officially this day is about honoring the Royal Family. In reality, it’s one huge and crazy street party.
Open Air Experience
The summer is not particularly long or hot in The Netherlands but still, there are plenty places and activities to enjoy… BBQ in a park or in the forest, swimming (the Dutch are very proud of their clean water), open-air cinemas, open terraces, concerts, festivals…
You can have a beach holiday
Just half an hour from Amsterdam there are popular beach resorts like Bloemendaal aan Zee and Zandvoort aan Zee. With white sand, plenty of watersports to try, and a row of cafes and bars by the beach, these destinations will be perfect whether you have a lazy day or an active trip in mind.
Back to nature
Amsterdam is green and not just the way you think. It has a lot of parks, like Vondelpark, Oosterpark, Westerpark or Rembrandt Park and no matter which one you choose, you’ll feel like you are in an untouched green oasis.
Make sure to check out the forest at the edge of the city (Amsterdam Bos).