Stays in Amsterdam are generally quite short because of the high cost of living and accommodation. We advise you therefore, to organise your weekend in order
to lose as little time as possible. With so little time, you have no choice but to cut to the essentials and discover the principal tourist sites in Amsterdam.
This is what we shall propose in this section.
You can of course go to the section to see / to do to complete or modify your planning.
Start the day early by going to the
This is the principal square of Amsterdam, the commercial and touristic heart of the city and one of the most well known squares in the Netherlands. Admire the New Church
(de Nieuwe Kerk), the Royal Palace (Koninklijk Paleis) and visit Madame Tussauds (wax models of famous personalities). To finish visiting the quarter,
don't forget to go to the Magna Plaza shopping mall just behind the royal palace : it's an old post office dating from 1898. This historic building
contains a number of luxury shops but the interior of the building is worth a look.
Situated close to the Dam square, the museum of Amsterdam retraces the evolution of the city since its construction. The museum, which sits inside the old orphanage of the city, will let you better discover each period in the history of Amsterdam.
You are not far from the Begijnhof, a hidden garden in the middle of the city, surrounded by traditional dutch houses. It's a real harbour of peace. It's a good time to get out your camera !
Don't forget to go and see the Dampkring which is one of the most famous coffee shops in Amsterdam. It has won several times the "Hightimes Cannabis Cup", and even a scene in the film "Ocean's Twelve" was shot here. The decoration is totally psychedelic with multicoloured walls. The decoration is totally delirious !!! The Dampkring stays a totally authentic coffee shop.
The flower market is to be found along the Singel canal. The flowers are to be found on the boats moored to the quay : it's a sort of floating market. As with most markets, there is a lot going on but it's very vivid in colours. You will find thousands of flowers, as well as bulbs and shrubs...This market, one of the most celebrated in the world, will make all flower lovers very happy !
Rembrandt's house (Rembrandthuis), in which he lived for nearly 20 years, was also where he worked (it was his workshop and school for his apprentices). It's well worth a visit !
The Red Light District is situated in the old centre and is one of the most frequented parts of Amsterdam. The prostitutes who wait behind their windows lit up by a red neon light (from where it gets its name) and the coffee shops have made this area famous (or infamous). In the heart of the Red Light District, you can also discover the museum of hashish and marijuana and the museum of eroticism...This district will either scandalize or amuse you depending on your nature...Whatever, the only way to know is to go and have a look !
Start the day early (again !) and go to Anne Franks house (Anne Frank Huis). Situated in the heart of Amsterdam, this is the house in which the child
Anne wrote her secret diary which, today, is known all over the world : a historic eye witness account !
Just next door, the canal boat museum (houseboat museum) which is installed in an old merchant ship, will allow you to discover the living conditions of the well to do Amsterdammers. Today, the canal boats are particularly appreciated as living quarters.
The Rijksmuseum is a true point of reference in the historical culture of Amsterdam. A large number of works of art in dutch painting can be seen in this world famous museum known for the quality of its collections. Not to be missed !
You are going to walk a lot during your weekend, so a trip on a canal boat is not only a good way to rest but a good way to take some excellent photos and is original way of discovering "the Venice of the North". This is a "must" for any weekend in Amsterdam and may even be worth a second trip (especially at night for example, unfortunately not all companies offer a nocturnal boat trip, ask beforehand). Not to be missed !!!
To relax you a little bit, you can visit the ancient brewery "Heineken Experience" to discover the history and brewing techniques behind the most famous dutch beer.
It would be unthinkable to leave Amsterdam without seeing the Van Gogh museum. It contains the largest collection in the world of the works of Vincent Van Gogh (paintings, drawings and letters).