Amsterdam is an amazing city with lots of things to do, sights to see and great places to eat and drink. Its a very pretty city with its canal lined streets and colourful tulips. I fell in love with Amsterdam the first time I went and have been back twice since and would definitely go again! There are a number of things to do in Amsterdam to fill a weekend break. These are some of my favourites that I love to do while in Amsterdam.
Things to do in Amsterdam
Ride a bike
The easiest and most fun way to travel around the city of Amsterdam is on a bike. I was a bit apprehensive the first time I hired a bike but soon realised how well the city is built for bikes. There is always a cycle lane to follow so I felt quite safe riding through the city.
Its a great way to cover a lot more ground than on foot so you can see and do a lot more. There are many places to hire bikes or you could consider a bike tour with a guide. The one thing that took a while to get used to is finding something to lock your bike to. As it is such a popular way to travel around Amsterdam there are always so many bikes locked up but with a bit of patients and confidence there is always something to chain your bike to. As the saying goes ‘when in Rome’, so when in Amsterdam do as the locals do and ride a bike!
Visit a Brewery
Dutch beer is great and you will find it being served in all the bars and restaurants in Amsterdam. For anyone outside Holland, Heineken is probably the most famous Dutch beer. There is a Heineken brewery in the centre of Amsterdam which runs tours. You get to see the brewery and machinery which is used and a chance to see how well you can pour a beer.
The Heineken Experience is good fun but my favourite brewery to visit is the Brouwerij’t IJ brewery which is just outside the centre of the city. It is very small compared to the Heineken brewery and tours only run Friday to Sunday at 3.30 pm in English and 4 pm in Dutch. The tour takes about 20 minutes and can be booked at the bar on the day of the tour. It gives you a history of the brewery and information on the ingredients that go into making the beer.
It is a great place to go even if you don’t get to take the tour. At weekends the bar is busy with people drinking and chatting, squeezed onto communal tables. There is a large outside seating area if the weather is good. The bar snacks are also really tasty so for me this brewery is definitely a winner.
Taste some cheese
Holland produce some delicious cheese and there is plenty to try in Amsterdam. On my last two trips I have done a cheese tasting at Reypenaer Cheese. The tasting lasts about an hour and you get to try 6 of their cheeses paired together with a white wine, red wine and a port.
Its a great way to try some delicious Dutch cheese while learning some background information into its history and how the different cheeses are produced and matured. Its located in the centre of the city so a great activity to do with friends during your visit to Amsterdam. Check out my other post for ideas on other foods to try in Amsterdam.
Cruise the canals
A trip on a boat along the canals is a very relaxing way to see Amsterdam. There are many canal boat trips available, I took one with the Blue Boat Company which can be added on to the Reypenaer cheese tasting.
The City Canal Cruise gives you a guide through many of Amsterdam’s canals. It passes many of the cities highlights and there is an audio guide to listen to giving you commentary on what you are seeing. It is a really enjoyable, relaxing way to see the city of Amsterdam.
There is so much that you can do but these are a few of my favourite things to do in Amsterdam. Another great activity is visiting the many restaurants and bars and trying some of the great food that is available. Please visit my other posts 4 great restaurants to try in Amsterdam and My favourite 3 places for brunch in Amsterdam.
Thank you for taking the time to read my blog post and I hope this has helped you to put together your itinerary for your trip to Amsterdam.
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