It seems a lot of people have Amsterdam on their itinerary bucket list. And with good reason. I assume it’s because of their relaxed laws on cannabis and prostitution. Or in other words, coffee shops and the Red Light District. But if you really want to experience what this unique town has to offer, you have to first make it through the sweet smell of the coffee shops and the alluring women. But who would want to leave all that?
Initially I really had no idea what this place had to offer, just like every other city I’ve visited. After wandering around for hours through the city, which is mostly built around canals, I got to see what really makes this city glow. And it wasn’t just the red lights gleaming through the windows. It was the people who seemed at ease riding their bikes everywhere they went. It was Amsterdams’ cleanliness. I say that because I’ve been staying just outside of New York City where trash accumulates around every step you take. I could just imagine if New York had canals. You wouldn’t even be able to see the water it would be so dirty. So clean your shit up New York.
Amsterdam also has some great museums including the Van Gogh Museum. I wanted to go to the Van Gogh but by the time I arrived at the museum (6pm) they were closed. Get there early if you want to see artwork by one of the worlds greatest artist. I should have planned ahead for it but I just wanted to see as much of the city as I could.
There’s also The Anne Frank Huis (house). Anne Frank was the Jewish girl who hid from the Nazis in WWII, only to meet her unfortunate end. I heard this tour wasn’t too exciting anyways since you’re being rushed though it in a line. All you can do is see for yourself though. This is another place you want to get to very early because when I arrived, there was a very long line of people reaching all the way around the block.
Even if you miss these places there are plenty of other museums around the city to curb any interests such as an Amsterdam museum, photography museum, marijuana museum, and even a museum on the history of sex! There’s also tons of good bars and restaurants in the area that need to be enjoyed!
If you’re coming here alone I highly suggest staying in a hostel to meet other like minded travelers. Experiencing this place alone is not the way to do it. But of course you can do it however you want. When you stay in hostels you get the chance to meet some really great people and do it up right. I stayed in a hotel since the company I worked for was paying for it and I didn’t really have a choice. I was only there for a couple of days anyways
If you ever find yourself near Amsterdam and want to get in or out of the city I highly suggest taking the tram. It’s only 15 euro for the entire day and you can go anywhere with it. There is Uber which will take you exactly where you want to go but this is more costly than the tram. You could also rent a bicycle which is how most of the locals get around. Some hotels even give out free bike rentals for the day. Don’t ever take a taxi unless you absolutely have to because they are very expensive.
There’s also more canals than you could imagine. Did you know there’s more canals in Amsterdam than in venice? And if this place isn’t already the bike capital of the world, then it should be. It’s definitely a cool city everyone should take the chance to explore. When you’re there, remember to keep an open mind!
I would love to go back but it would be much better if I was there for more than only 2 or 3 days. I would plan to stay in a hostel too. There’s definitely more to this city than what I’ve written here, so take a trip and experience it for yourself!