Amsterdam: Things you Must Know Before you Travel to This City

Amsterdam, the capital of The Netherlands and the city that I call my home. Amsterdam is a very popular destination for many tourists and business people and of course locals just love their own city. Before you travel to Amsterdam and enjoy the charm, the canals, the history and the cultural aspects of this never-ever-boring city, there are some do’s and dont’s you have to know.

Do:

Try our famous Dutch cheese. I have to be honest, I’m really a ‘cheese girl’, so I can only say: try it out! You will thank me for it.

Don’t:

Never ever walk in the bicycle lanes. Why not? Because it is an unwritten rule that bicycles have a priority over pedestrians. It will be dangerous for you to walk in these lanes and you will definitely piss off the locals if you walk in these lanes.

Do (and also a bit don’t):

Explore the city by bike. This way you will get a typically Dutch feeling as you see the city the way the locals do. BUT please ask your bike rental company to clearly explain how a bike works (and especially where the breaks are). Otherwise you will still piss off locals if you drive by like a crazy person. Oh and it’s also better for your own safety. If you are not a bike person, then go on foot!

Don’t:

If you take the underground/subway, please wait until all the people got out of the underground. Then it is your turn to get in.

Do:

Eat ‘bitterballen’. Delicious food that you can order at almost every café in the city. Goes very well together with wine and beer.

Don’t:

Do not only visit the centre of Amsterdam. It is the most touristy part of Amsterdam and there are so many other neighbourhoods that are beautiful to see and discover.

Do:

If you are in Amsterdam and it is the festival season, make sure to go to one. We have everything from food, to music or more artistic festivals.

Don’t:

Go for dinner anywhere near the ‘Wallen’. Absolutely unsavoury food.

Do:

Go to a park when the sun is shining. Most tourists go to Vondelpark, and because of this it is always packed with people. But for example Sarphati Park, Amstel Park and Rembrandt Park are just as (or maybe even more) beautiful and not so packed with people.

Don’t:

Only drink Heineken. Their is so much more beer in the Netherlands that you have to try!

Do:

Try out all the special beers that Amsterdam offers.

Don’t:

Stay in bed the whole morning. Go explore the city early as it will be the best time to enjoy the city when people are not already rushing to work and when not every corner is taken by a tourist with his/her camera.

Do:

Go on a free city walk tour with Sandeman’s New Amsterdam Tour. It’s a very good way to learn more about the history and culture of this city. Ask for Sam as your guide as he is a very good guide and very nice to listen to during the tour!

 

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