With great weather, now would be an ideal time for you to pack your bags and head to Holland for chilled out and relaxing vacation.
The Jordan festival, held in September is a three day celebration of the traditional culture and music of the Jordan district, the folk district of Amsterdam. The district’s atmosphere is full of life and energy with live bands, activities for children, opera and mass sing-alongs. The festival is a nostalgic and emotional recollection of the neighborhood’s past. If you happen to be in the levenslied (song of life), don’t forget to conclude your visit with a drink at Café Nol or De Twee Zwaantjes, the two classic sing-along bars.
Walk in Vondelpark
Vondelpark is Amsterdam’s most famous park. It’s centrally located and is near Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum and Van Gogh Museum. So it’s a quick and nice place for you to take a break at. Walk around, enjoy the sights, ride a bike or relax and read a book. The park is also home to several cafes for you to hop in to. Be sure to catch the concerts and plays held at the open air theatre. While entry is free, donations are much appreciated.
Rent a Bike
The best way to discover the winding and narrow streets of Amsterdam is on a bicycle. With outlets renting out bikes and 400 kilometers of cycling lanes, Amsterdam is truly a joy ride.
Before enjoying the orchestra at this world renowned concert hall, be sure to take a guided tour. The orchestra holds some of the world’s most talented musicians and the hall itself is renowned for its acoustics, whether you enjoy classical music or not. A tour of the Concertgebouw is essential.
The Bloemenmarkt is the most colourful part of Amsterdam. Get whisked away by the scents and smells of tulips, narcissus and other flowers in the world’s only floating flower market. Rows of floating barrages house small stalls that sell a wide variety of flowers. No matter what your favorite flower is, you are bound to find it here. Get the best out of the flower market during December, as exuberant amounts of Christmas Trees will be available.
Those of you looking for a bargain will love the Cuyp market. From flowers to fish to shoes, the street market that stretches across 260 stores has everything you can think of. If you truly want to experience Amsterdam at its multicultural best, a stroll through the Albert Cuypmarkt on a busy Saturday is the way to go.
Amsterdam is home to over 50 museums. From science to art, there is something for everyone. Your trip to Amsterdam would be incomplete if you don’t visit at least a few. The Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum, Stedelijk and NEMO are definite must sees.
The Rijksmuseum is the largest, and certainly the most popular museum. While it existed for over 200 years, it only recently went through a renovation making it all the more a ‘must see’. What makes the Rijksmuseum so special comes from the centuries of collection of many masterpieces of the Dutch and world art. Along the masterworks like Rembrandt’s “Night Watch”, several paintings by Vermeer, Van Dyck and Jan Steen, the museum also showcases a range of antiques of Dutch culture, collections of drawings and the classical photographs.
While the Van Gogh Museum and Stedelijk are both home to some stunning art, the NEMO is home to 4 floors of hands on sceince experiments and exhibitions.
These gardens were originally built by rich people as an act of charity for single women who had been widowed and found themselves penniless. These secret gardens are littered all around Amsterdam. A few right turns away from the crowded streets and you’ll find yourself in a ‘Hof’. So take some time off for exploring the city and you’ll be rewarded with some pretty sights and calm.
Anne Frank House
The Anne Frank House takes you back to a darker time in not so long ago human history. Here is where 15 year old Anne and her family hid from the Nazis for two years before they were betrayed. Being one of the most popular places for tourists, it is advised you come in early or late to avoid long queues.
Whether it is for breakfast, lunch, a snack in between or dinner, you can always find a way to sneak in some cheese into your meal. While the Dutch are famous for the variety of cheese, the Gouda can’t be missed out.
For a taste of the authentic Dutch culture, head to a Bruin Café (Brown Café). These traditional pubs are an essential part of the local culture. Enjoy laid back atmosphere along with the Bitterballen, which is a deep-fried, bite sized snack with a meat filling teamed with a round of beers.