Amsterdam and its iconic canals scatter the charm of the most amazing capital in the northern Europe so include it in your itinerary. Specially if you travel in Europe in March, though tulips grow at the mid of April. With the Keukenhof gardens and tulip dream it was so much desired for me. Spring time is the best choice for Amsterdam as your destination. Tulips are symbol of Netherlands where someone who is flower obsessed gets its piece of cake.
Even if you’re not choosing the similar reasons to visit, Amsterdam captures your heart during spring. It’s not only Amsterdam & Keukenhof gardens that will blow your mind. More than, during the spring (ie. months in which Keukenhof gardens are open) you can get a special Tulip card. Tulip festival card allows you to get unlimited traffic included in the price for 1, 2 or 3 days. It involves Amsterdam and its area which gives plenty of choice. Advantages also bloom as Amsterdam gets so dam’n expensive.
The fairy-tale world of Amsterdam deserves the title of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Flowing through the Amstel river city shines with the historic canals. It creates a cozy stroll and perfect picture moments.
Finding an acommodation in the Museum district Amsterdam I was overwhelmed with the allure of elegance. The relaxing oasis of Vogelnpark attracts the visitors at the adjacent side.
The artistic marvels of Dutch masterpieces requiers a visit. Due to the budget reasons I didn’t consider it despite the iconic inspiration of Van Gogh.
Rijksmuseum sits at the throne of artistic heritage in Amsterdam serving as the national museum. Its gardens charmingly bloom offering the free entrance. The relaxing atmosphere occupies the fun of its fountain. Rijksmuseum dwells in the exquisite charm of famous artworks like Vermeer, Rembrandt or Van Gogh. Worldly renowned Rijksmuseum definitely deserves a visit.
I am Amsterdam City Card offers the entrance free of charge.
Van Gogh Museum sits at the abundant elegance of the Museum Square or Museumplein. It bursts with more than 200 paintings dedicated to the famous Dutch artist. His drawings and letters add to the experience.
Stedelijk Museum dwells in the contemporary art lifting the cultural spirit of Amsterdam.
More than 70 museums shine in the colourful palette of Amsterdam.
Heineken Museum is also the popular attribute belonging to Amsterdam.
This lovely oasis of greenery stands in the Museum District. It’s located next to 2 cozy hostels- Flying Pig and StayOk. Interesting and elegant, be ready to visit the parallel street and Seven Sister’s Houses. It’s an elegant hotel that represents seven countries by its architecture. Summertime offers the free concert and late spring the rose decor.
Amsterdamse Bos is the relaxing treasure that lies at the outskirts of the city. This largest park gives the alluring charm with the cherry blossoms in spring.
At the very central location Flower Market bursts with the colourful shine and abundant choice. You’ll find seeds of every kind and little tulips (better buy them at the flower fields and possibly cheaper). Cheeses in Amsterdam enrich the little shop where you’ll be surprised with abundant offer. You’ll see everything from lavender to coconut.
Tulips are the symbol of Amsterdam, it’s why I came to visit.
Canals in Amsterdam
The most picturesque street is definitely Segeln giving the typical picture postcard of Amsterdam. Not far you’ll discover the Museum of Anne Frank, Nine Streets with its lovely bars and shops and authentic neighbourhood of Jordaan.
And remember, bikes rule here.
Don’t forget to visit the Light District, it’s located on the other side of the train station. Unfortunatelly, I didn’t have time for this oasis of nightlife and liberal prostitution.
I’ll dedicate a special post to it but Keukenhof gives the crown to tulips and floral magic. It’s the largest park of its kind in the world and open only from March till May. Be sure to come early in the morning to avoid the crowds. I was already there at 8am when the crowds started. Taking a bus from Amsterdam Airport is the best way to come.
Definitely visit the flower fields around, you’ll experience the rural shine in lovely Lisse. Renting a bike will offer you a chilling time in the outdoors.
Zaanse Schans & its windmills- The Most Charming Day Trip From Amsterdam
Easily accesible by train it’s a popular day trip from Amsterdam. The 20 minutes ride will take you to the authentic village of Netherlands full of charm. The city of Zaandam lies at the previous train stop.
Zaandam starts with canals right from the train station in the cute ambience. In the close proximity lies the popular Inntel Hotel, turned upside down.
Zaanse Schans is not only about the windmills. You’ll see here many chocolate manufatories (even the large factory) and you can make your own treat.
You can also visit the museum of one more speciality of Netherlands- clogs. This free museum offers the fantasy world to the fullest with every kind of clogs. Very instagrammable place to take photos.
Many bridges in Zaanse Schans make it look so picturesque, intertwined with souvenir shops.
Other Day Trips
Haarlem is one of the most popular towns in the Amsterdam area. Its canals hold the vibe of smaller town, which is only 20 minutes away by train from Amsterdam. Lovely carrousel dominates the main square into the town full of cultural vibe.
Lying on the river Spaarne Haarlem takes you into more authentic Dutch life. Several museums absorb the life as it was once like Teyler museum. Frans Haals Museum is the well established art gallery in Netherlands. Amsterdamsee port is a picturesque spot which I missed. De Adrian Windmill is a charming place where you can learn the history of Haarlem.
Volendam is a traditional village, lying on the lake. Unfortunately, the bus driver told me that I should stop in the centre but this doesn’t bring much. It’s a traditional village where you can wear the Dutch costumes. Being pretty popular, you’ll have the authentic souvenir. This small place is full of shops, souvenirs and traditional Dutch boats. I found out about it just by chance, in the hostel.
Zaandvort is the most attractive beach destination around Amsterdam. Unfortunately, I didn’t visit but it’s the places of stunning dunes. Many beach pavillions offer the relaxing atmosphere.
Accomodation in Amsterdam & Around
It’s tricky to say but Amsterdam can be quite expensive regarding accommodation so book it pretty in advance. Specially during the spring time. I never payed a hostel so much. I tried to find the couchsurfing host even outside of Amsterdam but invain. Maybe because it was Easter time, who knows. It would save me a lot of money though I’m missing the couchsurfing spirit and meeting people. I didn’t use it a long time.
The funny thing is that if I booked few weeks before, I would get my hostel cheaper. Actually, the one I actually wanted but it happened to be full- StayOk Vondelpark.
That’s why I chose the Flying Pig Uptown, near the Vondelpark which left me down in several facts. It was very noisy, the beds didn’t even had curtain (regarding the price) and toilets were very small. Difficult to change your clothes, for example. At least, breakfast was included when booked directly. And kitchen facilities exist.
Other budget options that include a cozy stay are:
Van Gogh Hostel in the Museum District
ClinkNoord conveniently located near the train station and covering a lovely terrace, common area and even only female rooms.
StayOk is one of the best options in Amsterdam at several locations.
Ecomama is a perfect mix of luxury and coziness, if you have a chance book this hostel.
If you want some luxury or adventure, I would suggest
Andaz Hotel– It delights with decor conveniently located at the main canal area, to be precise Prinsengracht street.
Hotel de l’Europe is also a fabulous stay with breatthaking decor to enjoy the luxury.
Houseboat offers a unique stay in the private enjoyment
Conclusion- Amsterdam & surroundings
Though pricey, Amsterdam is a vibrant city full of worldly renowned stuff like tulips, cheese or bikes. Its picturesque streets fill the heart with the pure charm.
Take advantage of the spring time and visit the Dutch spirit in its hidden corners.
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