Amsterdam: One of Europe’s most charming cities

As the capital of Netherlands, Amsterdam is one of the most popular European destinations. The city is known for its famous canal system, stunning architecture and its hip atmosphere. You’ll find most people wandering the sidewalks either by foot or more likely, by bike! In the summer when the weather is warmer you’ll find the majority of people outdoors enjoying a coffee in the sunshine or starting up a barbecue in Vondelpark. In the winter months, as expected, most people retreat indoors into cosy cafes and bars making Amsterdam the ideal city break destination all year round! 

Useful information

Language: Dutch is the official language although almost everyone speaks English as a second language.

Currency: Euro

Credit/Debit Card use: Almost all hotels and restaurants will accept credit/debit cards and as of 2018 you can only pay for transformation by card.

Weather: Essentially you can visit Amsterdam at any time of the year although in the winter months (November to March) it may bee too cold to walk or ride a bike outside. The most popular time to visit has to be June to September when the weather is pleasantly warm.

Getting around

The transport system in Amsterdam is extremely efficient and there are many options for travel. As you may already know, a popular option is to ride a bicycle or walk on foot but of course there are buses, trams, metros, ferries and trains that you can also use to get around. Luckily, you can find daily transportation passes starting at €7.50 which include the 3 main transport methods (bus, metro and tram).

Where to stay

The Banks Mansion

This is a 4* hotel located in the city centre of Amsterdam. It is an all-inclusive hotel which offers breakfast and 24-hour complimentary drinks and snacks. The building itself has an old world charm design and the location is just perfect, overlooking the canal.


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Room Mate Aitana

This is another 4* hotel located in Westerpark. Situation right next to Amsterdam Central Station and many other attractions you may want to visit it’s perfect for the traveler who likes to wander by foot!

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BackStage Hotel

If you are travelling on budget, this is a great option for you. Not only does this hotel charge very reasonable prices but it is also located in the city centre – a true win win situation!

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The Dylan Amsterdam

This hotel is for the lovers of luxury. The 5* hotel is also located located in the city centre meaning you will never be far from the places on your list all the while you will be encapsulated in the luxurious atmosphere, the gorgeous rooms and the otherworldly food.

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Where to eat

De Kas

This lovely restaurant is among the most unique restaurants in Amsterdam.
The restaurant is located in a set of greenhouses which date back to the 1920s and used to belong to the Amsterdam Municipal Nursery. Food is prepared with the freshest local ingredients and they grow their own herbs and vegetables. Book well in advance for dinner!

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Restaurant Vlaming

If you are looking for a true cultural experience – this is the restaurant for you! This is a cozy restaurant, located in the Joordan district, offering a modern twist on a Netherlands-inspired menu.  The place tends to get booked up pretty quickly so do make sure you make a reservation.

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De Silveren Spiegel

For those of you who like fine dining, we recommend De Silveren Spiegel. This place is world-class, and offers impeccable service, food, wine, ambience. One of the top rated and most luxurious spots in Amsterdam, you can wine and dine all night long (with eight courses).

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Fun facts about Amsterdam

  • EVERYONE IS A GIANT – The average Dutch man measures in at 1.83 m and their lengthy female counterparts at a respectable 1.71 m. The Dutch are people you can look up to, literally. 
  • PEOPLE DON’T LIKE CURTAINS – If you walk around Amsterdam, you soon start to notice that nobody draws their curtains. Nobody. Curious about the neighbors new sofa bed? Want to know what most Dutch folks are watching on the TV? Want to know what they eat for dinner? You can find the answers to all your questions with a stroll along the canals! Just joking, it’s not polite to stare!
  • THERE ARE MORE BIKES THAN PEOPLE – The population of Amsterdam is around 825.000, and with an estimated 881.000 bikes in Amsterdam, it’s absolutely correct to say there are more bikes in the city than residents. About 70% of citizens are believed to use their bike daily, meaning that if you don’t own a bike, you are practically a weirdo. The Netherlands is famous for its dedication to cycling, and the vast amount of bikes lining its streets is kind of unbelievable at first.
  • BUILDINGS ARE WONKY – In Amsterdam there are 7 famous leaning houses in a row called the Dancing Houses – but once you see one, you begin to see quite a few more. Building are that wonky because the foundations are build on trees, which are now sinking. What is even more funny is the fact that, instead of rebuilding the houses, they just straighten the facades, so you might see leaning buildings with perfectly straight doors and window frames.
  • THERE ARE 200+ COFFEE SHOPS Licensed coffee shops are allowed to sell soft drugs, and people are allowed to grow cannabis at home for personal use. But you know what’s really funny about it? Since this law was put in place, the amount of people in Amsterdam addicted to drugs has gone from 10,000 to 200, and the amount of locals who smoke weed on a regular basis went down to 5%!
  • AMSTERDAM IS ONE OF THE SAFEST CITIES IN THE WORLD -Surprised? For a city with the reputation of “anything goes” Amsterdam is actually among the safest cities in the world, and in a personal safety survey it ranked 13th. Amsterdam has also a far lower crime rate than most other prevalent European urban communities. After all, the more that is permitted, the less there is to get in trouble for.

Author: Anna Popova