Whisper the name Amsterdam and each person’s imagination is likely to go straight to certain images. Riding bicycles through quaint streets. Walking over foot bridges above scenic canals. Colourful tulips and windmills. The final home of a teenager diarist whose childhood was struck down by the Nazis. Heineken beer and leisurely strolls through lush gardens and parks.
Amsterdam means different things to different people. But, most would likely agree that the vibrant, colourful city promises beauty, wonder, excitement and, above all, adventure to those who seek it.
The Rembrandt House Museum gives visitors a glimpse into the life, the times, and the work of world-renowned painter and printmaker Rembrandt. Known as the most influential painter in Dutch history, Rembrandt lived in the house, later converted into a museum, for 20 years in the 1600s. Today, the museum displays “an almost complete collection” of Rembrandt’s paintings and other work. The Rembrandt House Museum also features a shop and right next door to the museum is Rembrandt Corner, the perfect spot for a bite to eat before or after a museum visit. The use of mobile phones is prohibited in the museum, although cameras are permitted with restrictions. Purchase tickets in advance or to just decide whether to put the Rembrandt House Museum on your itinerary.
Often considered a symbol of the Holocaust, Anne Frank has become familiar to millions around the world as many are first introduced to the Dutch Jewish teenager and budding writer through her diary. Anne and her family, and several others, hid for two years in what is now the Anne Frank House until August 4, 1944 when the Gestapo arrested and deported the Secret Annex’s occupants. Only Anne’s father, Otto, would survive the war. Today, countless travelers make the pilgrimage to the Anne Frank House to pay homage to Anne, to sit in the attic where she hid for two years, and to get a firsthand view of Anne’s original diary and other writings. The Anne Frank House provides an emotional and educational journey to travelers from around the globe, welcoming visitors seven days a week. Tickets can be purchased online in advance or at the door on the day you visit. To plan your trip to the Anne Frank House, visit http://www.annefrank.org/.
For more than 500 years, Dutch culture has grown and evolved as a result of the country’s relationship with the sea. The National Maritime Museum celebrates that rich history. If you prefer having an experienced tour guide show you around the museum, you can sign up for a guided tour or you can wind your way through 500 years of history on a self-guided audio tour. Explore maritime history through collections that include scale models, ship models, technical models, and ship parts. Cap off your day with a meal and a stunning view of the water at the museum’s Stalpaert Restaurant. Plan your visit to the National Maritime Museum in Amsterdam here https://www.hetscheepvaartmuseum.nl/, where you can buy an e-ticket that is valid for six months from the date of purchase.
The Heineken Experience beckons beer lovers from around the world to its headquarters in Amsterdam. Enjoy a guided tour or a self-guided tour, learn how Heineken beer is made from start to finish, and treat yourself to a taste of the country’s most famous beer. Video your experience with family and friends as you wander through the Heineken Experience, upload the video to http://www.heineken.com/global/heineken-experience/wall-of-fame.aspx, and see if your video is added to the Heineken Hall of Fame. To learn more about the Heineken Experience, which is open every day but New Year’s Day and Christmas Day, check out http://www.heineken.com/AgeGateway.aspx.
Spoil yourself with a tranquil day of nature in the heart of Amsterdam. Spend a day strolling among more than 200 species of trees as you meet more than 900 different types of animals from around the world at Amsterdam’s Artis Royal Zoo. Traipse through the Amazon rainforest and a tropical forest reef at the aquarium. Fly through the far reaches of space at the planetarium or visit the insectarium, home to thousands of insects. Don’t forget to save time to dine – or even just have a relaxing cup of coffee or cool down with an ice cream – with the butterflies at the zoo’s Vlinderres Restaurant. If you want to embark on a guided tour of the zoo, make your reservations a minimum of four weeks in advance. To make reservations or to learn more about the Artis Zoo, go to http://www.artis.nl/en/artis-royal-zoo/.
Renown as one of the most popular parks in Amsterdam, Vondelpark offers visitors a sprawling 70 acres of lush land, meadows, and plenty of people from around the city and the world. Let the kids go crazy at one of the park’s many playgrounds. Read a book on a quiet terrace, where you can typically buy something cold or warm to drink, or take a snooze in the middle of a tranquil meadow. Concerts are typically scheduled throughout the summer. Experience authentic Vondelpark on Sunday afternoons, when the crowds flock to the park. And, be sure to wear boots and raingear if you head over during or after a storm. Plan your trip to Vondelpark by starting here http://www.hetvondelpark.net/.
Experience authentic Dutch culture at Albert Cuyp Market, famously known as Amsterdam’s Latin Quarter. The city’s largest street market since 1905, Albert Cuyp Market welcomes visitors from Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Be prepared to spend plenty of time wandering the market’s 260 stalls where you’ll find everything from fresh fruit and flowers to jewelry and high end fashion. Check out Albert Cuyp Market by clicking here http://www.albertcuypmarkt.nl/ac_english.html.
- I Amsterdam: https://www.iamsterdam.com/en/
- Amsterdam Tourist Information: http://www.dutchamsterdam.nl/
- Amsterdam Airport Schipol: http://www.schiphol.nl/
- Amsterdam Metro: http://en.gvb.nl/reizen/waar-staat-mijn-tram-bus-metro
- Restaurants in Amsterdam: http://www.theguardian.com/travel/2011/jun/22/top-10-best-restaurants-amsterdam
- The Nine Streets: http://www.theninestreets.com/