Must See / Do

  • Anne Frank’s House
  • Rijksmuseum
  • Van Gogh Museum
  • Dam Square
  • Bloemenmarkt
  • Stroll through the Red Light District – you are in Amsterdam, gotta do this. This is not as seedy as you might think. Prostitution in Amsterdam is fully regulated, and the red light district, while a “working” neighborhood, has the look and feel of a tourist attraction. It is safe, and you will see all kinds of people walking through the alleys. Prostitutes display themselves in glass windows.
  • Visit a “Coffeeshop”
  • Take a boat tour on the canals
  • Take a day trip to Haarlem. Don’t have to stay in Haarlem, you can easily do a day trip from Amsterdam. See –
    • Molen De Adriaan windmill
    • Teylers Museum
    • St Bavo Church
    • Grote Markt
    • Jopenkerk
    • Frans Hals Museum
  • Do the Wetlands Canoe Safari tour (60 Euros, 5 hours, April-September). Its an active, non-strenuous canoe tour that affords excellent views of Dutch countryside that inspired Vermeer’s paintings.
  • Try some Belgian beer – Amsterdam has lots of it
  • Try some Indonesian food – Amsterdam has lots of it
  • Heineken Experience
  • (March to May ONLY) Visit Kukenhof Tulip Garden
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  • Maybe – Vondelpark
  • Maybe – A’Dam Toren (A’Dam Tower)
  • Visit the Aalsmeer Flower Auction
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  • Skip Foodhallen – it’s a mediocre Food court
  • Skip Zaanse Schans – unless you have extra time on your hands. It’s alright. The windmills are cool to look at. But everything is completely touristed out, which defeats the whole purpose of visiting Zaanse Schans
  • Skip riding bikes – Amsterdam is too congested to enjoy a relaxing bike ride. Also there are literally thousands of bike riders zipping through in every direction, making riding a risky proposition.


  • Take some time to figure out the tram system. It’s an efficient and cheap way to get around the city
  • Buy tickets for Museums online – you will save a lot of time by avoiding ticket lines.
  • Only do 1 museum a day to keep yourself from museum overload. Wake up early and be there when the museum opens. You will pretty much have the whole museum to yourself (before tour buses drop off hundreds of Asian tourists starting late morning)
  • Skip the Eye Film Institute. I have no idea why it even exists in its current form. The “exhibits” are total garbage and a utter waste of time (December 2016). The highlight “exhibit” was a walk through 4 dark rooms inside which there were projectors projecting some random images. It’s supposed to be artistic. Trust me – don’t go. I have been to many bad museums, and this is the worst. I had the MuseumKaart so at least the visit was “free” for me

To Do for next time

  • Heineken Experience
  • Wetlands Safari Canoe tour
  • Visit Gouda
  • Visit The Hague
  • Visit Rotterdam
  • Visit the Heineken Experience