Top things to do in Amsterdam
7 May 2021
The city of Amsterdam is known around the world for her canals, museums and the Red Light District. And while these surely are must sees on your visit to Amsterdam, there is so much more to see and do in the Dutch capital. The city offers history and adventure as well as the unexpected and the unbelievable. These are our favourite attractions in Amsterdam.
Take a canal cruise
There is no need to deny it, we are passionate about the canals of Amsterdam and truly believe that the best way to see them, learn about them and enjoy them is with a cruise through the canals. LOVERS offers several different types of canal cruises and each cruise experience is different from the one before.
Whether you are looking for a traditional canal cruise, an open boat experience or if you want something to eat while enjoying the sights, LOVERS has the cruise for you. As you travel through Amsterdam's neighbourhoods, such as the Jordaan, the Nine Streets or the Pijp, you’ll see sights like the Amstel river which gave the city its name, the Anne Frank House and the iconic Skinny bridge.
Visit the national museum
The Rijksmuseum is the national museum of the Netherlands and holds over 8000 artistic and historical objects covering 800 years of Dutch history. Inside you’ll find some of the most famous works by the Dutch masters, such as Rembrandt van Rijn’s The Night Watch and Johannes Vermeer’s The Milkmaid.
But the beauty is not just inside the Rijksmuseum. The building itself is worthy of a photo or two as well. Located at the Museumplein, or Museum District, and with definite renaissance and gothic influences, the Rijksmuseum is truly the height of architectural talent, designed by the same man, Pierre Cuypers, who designed Amsterdam Central Station.
Take a look beneath your skin
In the city centre, on the Damrak, you can learn more about yourself, your body and how you can influence how happy you are at BODY WORLDS: The Happiness Project. With 200 real, plastinated, human bodies on display, BODY WORLDS will take you on a fascinating journey through the human body.
The exhibitions are interactive and thematically arranged, with areas devoted to the heart, life cycle, diet and the role happiness plays in shaping our bodies and lives. A ticket to BODY WORLDS includes a free InBody Scan, which measures whether your body really is in balance. Age, gender and body type are all taken into account when calculating your body composition.
Explore the Arctic
The Amsterdam Icebar is one of the city’s most unique attractions as everything there is made of ice. This amazing bar is kept at a constant temperature of -10 degrees Celsius, giving you the opportunity to truly experience what exploring the Arctic could be like. At the Amsterdam Icebar, you join the crew of Dutch Arctic explorer Willem Barentsz, who at the end of the 16th century tried to find a quicker route to the Indies.
Sadly, Barentsz and his crew got stranded on the island of Nova Zembla for over a year. So it is a good thing that your ticket to the Amsterdam Icebar includes 3 free drinks and they’ll give you a warm coat and gloves too. The drinks are served in glasses made of ice and so is the art that surrounds you in the icebar.
Discover the secrets of the Red Light District
The Red Light District is probably Amsterdam’s best known and possibly most renowned neighbourhood. And yet there is so much people don’t know about it and the people who live and work there. Red Light Secrets is the world’s first Prostitution Museum and answers many of you questions you might have.
At the Museum of Prostitution, you’ll see the inside of the prostitute’s rooms, hear their stories and learn all about the secrets of the world’s oldest profession. The museum is housed in a famous brothel in Amsterdam that is still in its original state. You’ll even get a chance to sit behind one of the windows to feel what it is really like to be watched from the streets.
Learn more about the world’s most famous beer brand
Everyone recognises the famous green beer bottles (or cans) with a red star from the world’s most famous beer brand, Heineken. The Heineken Experience is a state-of-the-art interactive tour in the historic brewery of one of the world's largest beer brewers. Originally built in 1867, this cavernous building was converted into a museum and visitor centre in 1991. Since then, it has become a wildly popular tourist attraction.
The Heineken Experience is informative, hands-on and delicious. You’ll learn about Dutch beer drinking traditions, witness the Heineken brewing process first-hand and savour the nutty flavour of barley. During the self-guided tour you'll see how this once small, Dutch brewery became the world’s most premium beer brand.
See Sunflowers and Starry Nights
Van Gogh is quite possibly the most famous amongst the Dutch masters, though many outside the country's borders mispronounce his name. At the Van Gogh Museum you can learn about Vincent van Gogh's life, read his letters, and see his paintings and drawings. A visit to the Van Gogh Museum is a unique experience.
The museum is home to the largest collection of work by Vincent van Gogh in the world, including over 200 of his paintings, 500 drawings and more than 750 letters. It provides the opportunity to keep track of the artist's developments and compare his paintings to works by other artists from the 19th century, such as Gauguin, Manet and Pissarro. The museum also presents exhibitions on various subjects from 19th-century art history.
Believe the unbelievable
Amsterdam is home to many peculiar and unbelievable sights, such as the narrowest house, which is only 2 metres wide. But if you want to truly surround yourself with unbelievable sights and stories, you will want to visit Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Amsterdam, where you can marvel at hundreds of rare and unusual artifacts and get hands-on with unbelievable interactives.
At Ripley’s Believe it or Not! Amsterdam you enter the world of the unbelievable and the bizarre. Here the world’s most remarkable collection of natural, scientific, artistic, and human oddities are on display. You will be immersed in artefacts, incredible art, animal oddities, pop-culture memorabilia, and interactive games that are hard to believe yet true. From genuine shrunken human heads to the world's longest fingernails, people say it’s one of the weirdest spots in the city.