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Things to do in Amsterdam

Amsterdam, with its waterways and centuries-old canal-houses, is one of Europe's prettiest cities. Most attractions are in the city centre, from Dutch artworks at the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum, to reminders of Amsterdam's past at the Anne Frank House and the Homomonument. The city is not all heavy-duty history and culture, however, as anyone can see exploring the canals on a Canal Bike Tour. City Pass Amsterdam offers an easy, cheap and flexible way to make the most of your visit to the Netherlands. Read more on City Pass Amsterdam

Chess at Max Euweplein, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Amsterdam Tourism & Convention Board

Museums and Galleries

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  1. 1. Van Gogh Museum - Museums and Galleries

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    Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam. Photo by Jannes Linders, © Van Gogh Museum

    More than 200 paintings by Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh, and nearly every sketch, print, etching, and piece of correspondence he ever produced, are housed here. The city-centre Van Gogh Museum has the world's largest collection of the artist's work.Show this on map

    Cost

    €12.50; 13-17s €2.50; under 13s free

    Opening hours

    Daily 10am-6pm (until 10pm Fri)

    Address

    7, Paulus Potterstraat, Amsterdam 1070 AJ

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 570 5200

    Transport

    Tram 2, 3, 5, 12 to Van Baerlestraat

    Website

    Van Gogh Museum Website

  2. 2. Museum of Bags and Purses - Museums and Galleries

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    Museum of Bags and Purses, Amsterdam. Photo by Wouter van der Tol, © Tassenmuseum Hendrikje

    With 3,500 bags, accessories and other items on display, the city centre's Museum of Bags and Purses charts the history of the women's bag in Western culture, from the Middle Ages to present day. The museum shop has bags for sale.Show this on map

    Cost

    €6.50; concessions €5; 13-18s €2.50; under 13 free

    Opening hours

    Daily 10am-5pm

    Address

    573, Herengracht, Amsterdam 1017 CD

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 524 6452

    Transport

    Tram 4, 9, 14 to Rembrandtplein

    Website

    Museum of Bags and Purses Website

  3. 3. Anne Frank House - Museums and Galleries

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    Anne Frank House, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Anne Frank House

    Seeing the secret hiding place in the city-centre Anne Frank House allows visitors to imagine the terrible circumstances the teenage Jewish diarist had to endure to survive World War II. Anne died in a Nazi concentration camp in 1945.Show this on map

    Cost

    €8.50; concessions & 10-17s €4; under 10s free

    Opening hours

    Mid Mar-mid Sep daily 9am-9pm (until 10pm Sat & Jul-Aug); mid Sep-mid Mar daily 9am-7pm (until 10pm Sat)

    Address

    263, Prinsengracht, Amsterdam 1016 GV

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 556 7100/7105

    Transport

    Tram 13, 17 to Westermarkt

  4. 4. Rijksmuseum - Museums and Galleries

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    Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Rijksmuseum

    Most of the city-centre's Rijksmuseum is closed for renovation until 2013 but key artworks and other items from the 17th-century Dutch 'Golden Age' collections can be viewed in the Philips Wing. They include Rembrandt's famous painting The Night Watch (1642).Show this on map

    Cost

    €12.50; under 19s free

    Opening hours

    Daily 9am-6pm

    Address

    1, Jan Luijkenstraat, Amsterdam 1071 CJ

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 674 7000

    Transport

    Tram 2, 5 to Hobbemastraat

  5. 5. Amsterdam City Archive - Museums and Galleries

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    Amsterdam City Archive, Amsterdam. © Stadsarchief Amsterdam

    Located in De Bazel, a vast granite building that originally housed an investment bank, the Amsterdam City Archive allows visitors to seek out information and documents from Amsterdam's history. It's a tale that dates back to around 1200.Show this on map

    Cost

    Free; special exhibitions and tours cost extra

    Opening hours

    Tue-Sun 10am-5pm (from 11am Sun)

    Address

    32, Vijzelstraat, Amsterdam 1017 HL

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 251 1511

    Transport

    Tram 16, 24, 25 to Keizersgracht

    Website

    Amsterdam City Archive Website

Attractions

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  1. 6. Nieuwe Kerk - Attractions

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    Nieuwe Kerk, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Amsterdam Tourism & Convention Board

    Holland's royal inauguration church, the Dam's Nieuwe Kerk was originally Catholic but passed into Protestant hands in 1578. It contains some elaborate funerary monuments and is now mainly used as a space for important exhibitions on a range of themes.Show this on map

    Cost

    Free; exhibitions cost extra

    Opening hours

    Daily 10am-6pm (until 10pm Thu during special exhibitions)

    Address

    Dam Square, Amsterdam 1012 JS

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 638 6909

    Transport

    Tram 1, 2, 4, 5, 9, 13, 14, 16, 17, 24, 25 to the Dam

    Website

    Nieuwe Kerk Website

  2. 7. NEMO - Attractions

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    NEMO, Amsterdam. Courtesy of NEMO

    Shaped somewhat like a ship, city-centre NEMO takes visitors on a voyage of discovery into the world of science and technology. Hands-on exhibits cover natural science, human behaviour and information and communications technology. The upper deck becomes a beach in summer.Show this on map

    Cost

    €12.50; under 4s free

    Opening hours

    Tue-Sun 10am-5pm (also Mon Jun-Aug)

    Address

    2, Oosterdok, Amsterdam 1101 VX

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 531 3233

    Transport

    Bus 22, 42, 43 to Kadijksplein

    Website

    NEMO Website

  3. 8. Central Library - Attractions

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    Central Library, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Openbare Bibliotheek Amsterdam

    The city's new Central Library opened in 2007 in a light-flooded example of modern architecture, part of a waterfront development east of Central Station. The library has books in Dutch, English and other languages and a multimedia centre.Show this on map

    Cost

    Free

    Opening hours

    Daily 10am-10pm

    Address

    143, Oosterdokskade, Amsterdam 1011 DL

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 523 0900

    Transport

    Centraal Station

    Website

    Central Library Website

  4. 9. Brouwerij 't IJ - Attractions

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    Brouwerij 't IJ, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Amsterdam Tourism & Convention Board

    Housed in the slightly ramshackle De Gooyer windmill in the old harbour, Brouwerij 't IJ is a proeflokaal (tasting house) with a micro-brewery attached. Visitors can tour the brewery then settle back to sample some of its various specialised beers.Show this on map

    Cost

    Free

    Opening hours

    Daily 3pm-8pm; brewery visits between 3pm and 4pm

    Address

    7, Funenkade, Amsterdam 1018 AL

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 320 1786

    Transport

    Tram 10 to Hoogte Kadijk

    Website

    Brouwerij 't IJ Website

  5. 10. Homomonument - Attractions

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    Homomonument, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Amsterdam Tourism and Convention Board

    Westermarkt's Homomonument was inspired by a symbol of persecution, the pink triangle the Nazis forced gay people to wear, which was turned into a badge of pride. It comprises three rose-toned granite triangles, one projecting out over the Keizersgracht canal.Show this on map

    Cost

    Free

    Opening hours

    Daily all day

    Address

    Keizersgracht Canal, Westermarkt, Amsterdam 1016 DH

    Transport

    Tram 13, 14, 17 to Westermarkt

    Website

    Homomonument Website

Special things to do

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  1. 11. Chess at Max Euweplein - Special Things to do

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    Chess at Max Euweplein, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Amsterdam Tourism & Convention Board

    Budding grandmasters of any age will appreciate the excitement of playing chess at Max Euweplein, using a walk-around 'board' and pieces that are one metre high. Max Euweplein is a busy square and a small crowd always gathers.Show this on map

    Cost

    Free

    Opening hours

    Daily 10am-10pm

    Address

    Max Euweplein, Amsterdam 1017 MA

    Transport

    Tram 1, 2, 5, 7, 10 to Leidseplein

  2. 12. Skating in Vondelpark - Special Things to do

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    Skating in Vondelpark, Amsterdam. © Siebe/www.flickr.com/photos/siebe

    Inline skating in Vondelpark is a fast, safe and pleasant way to get around Amsterdam's large central green oasis. At Rent A Skate, the wheels come together with protective pads and helmets, and even starter lessons if needed.Show this on map

    Cost

    €5 for first hour, €2.50 for subsequent hours; €15 per day

    Opening hours

    Daily 11am-8pm (suspended in bad weather)

    Address

    7, Vondelpark, Amsterdam 1075 VR

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 664 5091

    Transport

    Tram 1, 2, 5, 7, 10 to Leidseplein

    Website

    Vondel Tuin Website

  3. 13. Canal Bike Tour - Special Things to do

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    Canal Bike Tour, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Canal Company

    Up to four people can follow a Canal Bike Tour around Amsterdam's canals onboard a pedalo or water bike. These can be rented from three Canal Bike docks around the centre, including one outside the city-centre Anne Frank House.Show this on map

    Cost

    €8 per person per hour; 3-4 people €7 per person per hour

    Opening hours

    Apr-Oct daily 10am-6pm (until 10pm mid summer); Nov-Mar Sat & Sun 10am-5.30pm

    Address

    263, Prinsengracht (Outside the Anne Frank House), Amsterdam 1016 GV

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 626 5574

    Transport

    Tram 13, 14, 17 to Westermarkt

    Website

    Canal Bike Website

  4. 14. Yellow Bike Tour - Special Things to do

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    Yellow Bike Tour, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Yellow Bike

    The three-hour guided Yellow Bike Tour takes up to a dozen riders to many well-known places and little-known nooks and crannies in Amsterdam city centre. Visit places that are not easy to get to on foot in a short time.Show this on map

    Cost

    €27.50

    Opening hours

    Apr-Nov daily 10.30am & 1pm (2pm Sat)

    Address

    29, Nieuwezijds Kolk, Amsterdam 1012 PV

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 620 6940

    Transport

    Tram 1, 2, 5, 7, 13, 17 to Nieuwezijds Kolk

    Website

    Yellow Bike Website

  5. 15. Canal Hopper - Special Things to do

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    Canal Hopper, Amsterdam. Courtesy of Canal Company

    Touring Amsterdam's canals, River Amstel, IJ waterway and harbour by Canal Hopper's open-top electric boat affords a different perspective on the city. Take a fixed or tailor-made tour from the Amstel or Passenger Terminal docks or use the stopping line.Show this on map

    Cost

    Day ticket €20; under 5s free

    Opening hours

    Mid Mar-Nov Fri-Sun 9am-7pm

    Address

    26, Weteringschans, Amsterdam 1017 SG

    Telephone

    +31 (0) 20 626 5574

    Transport

    Amstel: 4, 9, 14 to Rembrandtplein; Passenger Terminal: tram 25, 26 to Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ/Bimhuis

    Website

    Canal Company Website

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