Everything you need to know about Amsterdam before visiting for the first time
Amsterdam is the Netherlands’ capital, a center for the arts, vast canal system, intricate street network and narrow mansions with gable facades, perfect for the elaborately decorated homes. If you love to travel and want to experience a different kind of tourist destination, then you should definitely try Amsterdam. The capital city of the Netherlands houses some of the most fascinating architecture around. Here is a list with everything you need to know about Amsterdam before visiting for the first time.
Table of Contents
Where is Amsterdam located
The most asked question is “Where is Amsterdam? “. Amsterdam is located in norther part of Europe in a country called The Netherlands. Amsterdam is the capital of the Netherlands and is home of over 800.000 inhabitants. Do not mistake the Dutch Amsterdam with the American Amsterdam. Amsterdam is heavily visited by tourists coming from all over the world. Due being a popular tourist destination, Amsterdam is on most of travelers bucket list.
Amsterdam is famous for many tourists attractions but most known is for the Dutch progressivity in regards with freedom of soft drugs and prostitution. Most famous place in Amsterdam is Red Light District is a place made of few connected streets where prostitutes are selling their services from rooms with front windows. Each window has a red light burning at the entrance hence the name of the district. The second famous reason why Amsterdam is famous for are the coffeshops. Coffeshops not to be mistaken with coffee houses, are shops where anyone over 18 years old can go and buy and smoke marijuana and hashish. Those two reasons are the main reasons why Amsterdam is famous for but we should not forget that Amsterdam is home of Van Gogh museum, Anna Frank house and amazing architectural buildings.
How to get around Amsterdam
Amsterdam is not a big city by all means. Actually is pretty small in comparation with London or even Paris. When visiting Amsterdam there are many way how you can get around. To make sure you do not miss any hidden gems, best is to walk the center. If you want to get from one side of town to the other you can use uber, taxi or public transport. Public transport in Amsterdam is one of the best in the world. Very well maintained, good connection, clean and not least safe, Amsterdam public transport is recommended to use to all tourists. Another way to get around the city is by cycling. You can rent a bike from almost any corner or just use the bike taxi. Either way you are up for some major fun.
Is Amsterdam family friendly
This question you might ask yourself after reading why Amsterdam is famous for; and you will have all the right to do so. Although the city is steered towards young travelers, families could have a blast in this city and there are many activities for families as well. From the hundreds museums, canal cruises, shopping or the many activities outside the city center, Amsterdam is a good destination for families as well. Many parks and art galleries are in Amsterdam and all are kids friendly.
The weather in Amsterdam is wet. Not all the time wet, but most of the time is best to have an umbrella with you even if you see only blue sky with sunshine. Always be prepared. In the winter can be pretty cold and once in few years Amsterdam can get some good snow and icy days. In the summer it can get hot; as hot as over 30°C (86°F). Best is to come prepared with rain coats and umbrellas and proper shoes. Better to have extra than less.
What to eat in Amsterdam
Depending on your food taste, you can find any kind of food you want. Most popular are the Belgian fries shops, where you can get a snack from the wall like a burger or a cheese shuffle. Asian food is super popular and available almost on every corner. The second most popular food is the Turkish food. Turkish shaorma is delicious and easy to find. If you are a vegetarian or if your eating habits are more healthy there are plenty of heathy food shops where you can enjoy all kinds of super foods. Another option is fish. Dutch fish shops are easy to find and the “gebakken kibbeling” is the one dish you must try. Raw herring is considered a super food and is eaten by the Dutch once a week.
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