A favourite of mischief seekers and cultured souls; Amsterdam has become wildly popular with the British public as a summer break destination. The city has so much to offer in the way of culture, food and delicious Dutch beer that you could easily spend a dozen chock-full weekends examining its every corner.
Below is an insider’s guide to give you the best chance to squeeze every drop of fun out of your next visit. In partnership with Flybe, who host regular and affordable flights to the city, we’ll walk you through the unmissable sights and sounds of Amsterdam.
One of the best spots in the city to experience underground electronic music, Studio 80 lives in the heart of Amsterdam and regularly draws packed crowds to its 600 capacity dancefloor. Variants of techno and house play out all night long behind the club’s iconic black doors (the more underground the better) and you can expect a reasonable entrance price.
One of the club’s founders Jacek Rajevski summed up his club and its aim pretty perfectly when he said “we believe art, parallel to love, is the supreme human expression”. Sugar factory is a convergence of creative mediums, with performance at the heart of its ethos. Based in the south east of the city the former theater boasts a stage which hosts a broad spectrum of sounds, from jazz to electronic.
From The Velvet Underground to Daft Punk; Paradiso has showcased pretty much every great musician to have ever walked the Amsterdam streets. The venue has existed since 1968 and has gained a legendary reputation over the years. You can find a broader range of music now than ever, with The Roots, Nils Frahm and St Vincent all booked to play in the next two months.
Van Gogh Museum (€17)
A trip to Amsterdam wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the Van Gogh museum. The building holds the single most extensive collection of the artist’s work and features lots of relics and insightful information into the man’s life and work. Book in advance as lines are always long.
Anne Frank’s House
Step inside a chillingly poignant and fascinating part of history at the Anne Frank House. Much of the house has been painstakingly resorted, with her bedroom much the same as it was over 60 years ago. It’s essential to pre-book as queue’s are always huge.
Hotel Bellington (£40 per night)
The Bellington is a smart choice for those on a budget, or on a mission to save as much money as possible on the sights (and cafes). At £40 per night and a lowly 2 stars don’t expect Swan-sculpted towels waiting on your bed each night. Do expect one of the best locations of any hotels and a decent place to rest your head during your time in Amsterdam.
Misc Eatdrinksleep hotel (£120 per night)
Misc Eatdrinksleep is a quirky and modestly expensive hotel situated in a 17th century canal house. Anyone visiting for a quiet and relaxing time should note that you’d be sleeping right in the middle of the fast-pumping heart of Amsterdam’s nightlife, with the red light district just down the road. Despite the chaotic surroundings misc offers a charming and friendly experience to its guests.
Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam hotel (£363 per night)
If you’ve got money to burn and an eye for the finer things in life, the Waldorf Astoria hotel is exactly where you’ll want to be. As one of the most expensive and highly rated hotels in Amsterdam you’ll be in good hands as you either recline in the spa or eat at arguably the best restaurant in the city.
Maydanoz offers delicious, authentic Turkish food in a spacious and friendly environment often bustling with locals. The price is very reasonable and portions are always generous. You really can’t go wrong with anything here so experimenting is always a good idea.
Widely regarded as one of the best vegetarian and vegan restaurants in town, you can expect big portions and an inventive menu at De Waaghals. Booking in advance is usually good idea as it’s almost always packed out.
Boasting some of the most innovative food around (think England meets Japan meets Amsterdam) and tucked out of sight and ear shot from the buzzy tourist spots, Beddington’s is perfect for business meetings, special occasions and everything in between. The restaurant is expensive, but the originality of the food and attention to detail of the place make it completely justified.