The unusual things you don’t want to miss!
Amsterdam is full of weird and unusual things to check out or do. Most of these you will never see anywhere else in the word !
The Red light District
The Red Light District is one of the most iconic neighbourhood of Amsterdam. Whether or not you’ve visited the city, you have heard of it. Well, there’s a lot of reasons this place is so famous around the world. The sex shops and windows for sex workers made the whole area very famous.
The best way to get the feeling and experience the Red Light District as its best is to take a walk around at night. But, don’t go on a Friday or Saturday ! Those are the days the neighbourhood (and let’s be honest, the entire city) is the most crowded. You literally have to walk in line in the street and it’s easy to miss things when all you see is people walking around you. But the rest of the week is pretty quiet (the tourists are not there) and you get to see a lot in there. Probably more than you’d wish for !!
As far as unusual things go this one is probably the best one right? haha
Amsterdam is home to more than 300 coffeeshops, which is a lot. Technically, weed isn’t legal in the Netherlands. It’s just tolerated, meaning you are only allowed to smoke in specific places (the coffeeshops). While you can also enjoy a smoke in a park or kinda wherever you want, please do not smoke in the streets. Dutchies don’t like it so much and it’s seen as pretty rude and ignorant. So be nice and respectful and don’t do it please. You are allowed to buy up to 5grams of weed in the coffeeshops.
If you don’t know where to go, just walk in wherever you feel like, they are very easy to find. Some are good, some are bad, they all have their own vibe and atmosphere. I recommend Central Coffeeshop for the good weed, Prix d’Ami for the good Cali stuff lol, and Get Down to It Coffeeshop for the atmosphere. I also really want to go to the Dolphins as it is apparently ocean themed and i really want to see! It’s on my list for the next trip 😉
Amsterdam is full of secret beauties, and the Begijnhof is one of them. It is an ‘hofje’, an old closed courtyard. It goes back to the 14th century and was home to ladies who devoted their lives to God. They were not nuns, as they were free to leave if they wanted to get married, but were otherwise living a religious life, safe in the Begijnhof. It is secluded and built much like a covent, which garanteed the quietness its occupants needed.
Today it is open to the public until 5pm, but i suggest going early if you want to avoid the crowds, as it remains pretty small (most of the place is private) and it gets crowded pretty fast!
The bloemenmarkt, or flower market, is a cute floating market just a few steps away from Konigsplein where you can find the cutest flowers ever ! And not just tulips haha. You can get flowers, seeds, anything related to gardening, really. It’s so colorful it’s a perfect place for photos as well.
And don’t forget the cheese shops on the side, where you can try all the cheeses ! It’s perfect for a free snack while walking around the city. You can buy the cheese you like as well of course, but i don’t recommend it as you can find the same ones in supermarket or stores for cheaper. Those shops are really cute and nice to enjoy but also a real tourist-trap ! You also have a “cheese Museum” which is really just a fancy shop where you can learn about cheese. Some of the shops do cheese and wine tasting as well, they usually have a sign at the door so be on the look-out when walking around because you might get lucky !
The Eye Film Institute
The Eye Institute is a kind of huge bank for movies. They keep a record of every movie that comes out in the Netherlands, both Dutch and international movies. You can come in and watch a movie if you want! It’s pretty cool. They have a bunch of exhibitions, the temporary ones are about 15euros but the permanent exhibition is in the basement and is free! You will learn about cinema and about Dutch movies.
The Nemo Science Museum
Let’s be honest. I haven’t been inside the museum (yet). However, you can walk up its roof and enjoy an awesome view of the city! I did that and loved it, despite the wind. It really shows a new angle of Amsterdam! I just wished i had a better weather that day, as you can see on the photo it wasn’t that great cloud wise, but honestly it’s really nice to go up and see around. You can see the whole harbour and the Magere Brug, the most famous bridge of Amsterdam.