Despite my short stay, I absolutely fell in love with Amsterdam when I traveled there with my cousin two weeks ago. We managed to see so many sights and do so many activities that are quintessentially “Amsterdam” that I thought I would share my list of the 10 things you must do in Amsterdam.
1. Ride a Bike
Biking Amsterdam is arguably the best way to see the entire city and experience an essential part of Amsterdam’s culture.
2. Lose Yourself in the Canals, especially the 9 Straatjes (9 Streets)
Just wandering the city’s intricate network of gorgeous canals is enough to entertain and delight, but a particularly enjoyable area – full of Dutch shopping, dining, and cafes – is the area called the 9 Streets.
3. Remember Anne Frank
This museum is located in the house where Anne Frank and her family hid from Nazi persecution and is dedicated to remembering Anne’s life. It also houses exhibitions to educate visitors on all forms of persecution and discrimination.
4. Snack on Stroopwafles and Fries
Stroopwafles are part cookie and part waffle with a delicious caramel center. And while fries are fries, it is the sauces in Amsterdam that make them extra delicious!
5. Visit Van Gogh
Learn about the life of Van Gogh as you admire a vast collection of his work, especially his golden-yellow sunflowers.
6. Climb on an “I amsterdam” sign
Located throughout the city, these signs are emblematic of Amsterdam. And the best part? They let tourists climb all over them, which makes for some fun, although crowded, photo ops.
7. Eat Pancakes at the Pancake Bakery
I think this one is self explanatory, but my advice is to be bold and try one of their more interesting concoctions, like the Mexican or Thai pancakes.
8. Stroll through the Flower Market, or Bloemenmarkt
When you think of Amsterdam, you think of clogs and canals, but more importantly, you think of tulips. At the floating flower market you can marvel at all of the beautiful varieties and even bring some seeds home to grow some tulips of your very own (if customs allows).
9. Revel in Rembrandt and Vermeer at the Rijksmuseum
The recently renovated Rijksmuseum boasts an impressive collection of Old Dutch masters.
10. Brave the Red Light District at Night
Whether you agree or disagree with the Dutch acceptance of legal prostitution, the infamous Red Light District is worth a visit.