Picturesque canals, a rich artistic heritage and excellent international transport links combine to make Amsterdam one of Europe’s most desirable destinations. A thriving cultural scene and relaxed way of life have helped to make properties in this city some of the most sought-after on the continent, but if you’re looking to spend more time out and about than sitting at home, take a look at our E&V list of top activities for visitors to the Dutch capital.
Museums & culture
The Van Gogh Museum and Rijksmuseum are two of the most celebrated galleries in Amsterdam, but art lovers will also adore a stroll through the bohemian Jordaan neighbourhood, which boasts more than 40 specialist galleries. The Amsterdam Museum is a must-visit for those interested in the city’s rich and diverse history, with over eight centuries of found objects including a pair of 700-year-old shoes. If the Anne Frank Huis is too crowded, head instead to the Joods Historisch Museum, which charts the history of Judaism in the Netherlands.
Shopping & markets
Amsterdam is a shopper’s paradise, with quaint flea markets and trendy boutiques galore. The Nine Little Streets is the city’s top shopping destination, set amongst narrow brickwork lanes and boasting a great selection of vintage stores, designer hotspots, and cute teahouses. The Bloemenmarkt provides a feast for the senses, with jewel coloured tulips and highly fragrant roses lining the streets of Singel alongside the canal. The city’s largest street market is the Albert Cuypmarkt, where you can buy everything from rare fabrics to raw herring sandwiches.
If the weather is pleasant, do as the locals do and explore the city by bicycle. Head away from the crowds of Dam Square to venture into the docklands and the islands of Borneo and KNSM. Here you’ll find some of Amsterdam’s newest architectural additions, including the iconic curving red footbridge. Another sunny day favourite is the Vondelpark, a popular picnic spot for locals. During the summer, the park hosts free concerts: perfect for a relaxing evening. Just north of the city you’ll find the Waterland Nature Reserve, where you can hire boats and go rowing through picturesque Dutch villages and parkland.
Eating & Drinking
If you want to eat like a local, it’s worth trying the raw herring sold in a number of shacks throughout the city. For sit down meals, you can find plenty of restaurants in Leidseplein and Rembrandtplein. Indonesian cuisine is very popular in Amsterdam, particularly the rijsttafel. An impressive spread of more than forty dishes often ordered during big celebrations, you won’t want to miss this food fusion extravaganza.
Investing in Amsterdam
If you want to stay a little longer than a weekend, you’ll find that Amsterdam’s property market is currently very attractive to foreign investors. Real estate prices are lower than they were five years ago, making this this the ideal time to seek out high value properties. With offices across the globe, Engels & Völkers are perfectly placed to talk you through the benefits of investing in Dutch property.