Quick Tourist Guide to Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the perfect destination for a European city-break. With a wide variety of things to do and see, as well as a range of accommodation to suit every budget, there is something for everyone in the Dutch capital.
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Many tourist attractions can be easily reached from the city centre on foot, so a stroll around this beautiful, cosmopolitan city with its cobbled streets, numerous canals and rich architectural history is an excellent way to explore the city and take in its many sights. For anyone interested in art, there are two absolute must-see museums: The Van Gogh Museum and the Rijksmuseum. The Van Gogh Museum exhibits several hundred of the great artist`s paintings, including the famous `Sunflowers` and the Rijksmuseum showcases a great variety of Dutch works of art, including masterpieces by Rembrandt and Vermeer.
House of Anne Frank
Anne Frank Huis, the House of Anne Frank, is one of the most popular attractions in Amsterdam. Now a museum receiving over 1 million visitors each year, in the 1940`s it was the secret hiding place of young Jewish girl Anne Frank and her family. Visitors can see the rooms in which these people hid for two years while avoiding Nazi persecution.
Amsterdam History Museum
Anyone interested in the history of the city should visit Amsterdams Historisch Museum, which features a range of displays detailing the city`s history. The exhibitions are extremely varied and include computer-generated maps and a 700-year old pair of shoes!
Children may find these museums of interest – in particular, many youngsters visit the Anne Frank Huis – but for a day devoted more wholeheartedly to childish entertainment, a visit to the Efteling amusement park or the Artis zoo is ideal. Efteling is the largest theme park in the Netherlands; a huge enchanted forest featuring characters from all manner of fairytales. Dwarves, witches and characters from the Grimm brothers` stories and the Arabian Nights abound. The traditional fairground rides for small children are supplemented by modern rides suitable for thrill-seekers, so the whole family can enjoy a full day out here. Artis, the third oldest zoo in the world, is home to a vast array of creatures living in varied environments including a rainforest, aquarium, canal and savannah. There is also a petting zoo and playgrounds for children.
For those looking for a more relaxing break, Amsterdam offers a buzzing cafe culture and its fair share of parks and gardens, such as the Museumplein, or `Museum Square`. Surrounded by the city`s most notable museums, this large green space is the perfect place to enjoy a picnic or relax between viewing the exhibitions nearby. In winter, the large pond is transformed into a skating rink.
Amsterdam is a city steeped in history, with varied architecture and a wide range of attractions for visitors. It certainly has far more to offer than the stereotypical Dutch fare of windmills, canals, bicycles and clogs, although these can all feature in a trip to the Netherlands! There is accommodation to suit all tastes and budgets and, with its major international airport, visitors can fly to Amsterdam easily from all over the world.
Live like a true local and rent a Short Stay Apartment in Amsterdam for your holiday or city break. Professionally managed, fully equipped apartments with kitchen to enjoy living like a local. Take a look at our Amsterdam Apartments page for more information.