We agree that traveling habits has been changed throughout the years. Now, traveling is mostly about exploring new and unknown places like cafes, streets or buildings when we travel to a new destination. But there are some cliches that we cannot ignore! How can we leave Paris without going on top of the Eiffel Tower or grabbing a delicious croissant in a fancy cafe? Or is it possible not to drop in to Times Square when you fly all the way to New York? Not a chance! So we collected our favourite Amsterdam cliches that we can’t definitely ignore!
Amsterdam is one of those cities that most people in the world wants to visit some day… It is a city that perfectly blends history, architecture and culture! With it’s beautiful canals, various museums and other great places to see; Amsterdam absolutely has a lot to offer to travel lovers. From wandering between those fabulous canals to visiting interesting museums or taking a bite of Holland’s most delicious foods, you have crazy amount of options to choose from!
Selfie with the “I AMsterdam Sign”!
“I Amsterdam Sign” is one of the city icons of Amsterdam and taking a photo next to it is almost a must! Let’s not lie to each other, nearly everyone who visits Amsterdam does this cliche! Haha. Even though not every people post their “I Amsterdam Sign” photos or selfies on social media; we are pretty sure that every one of us who travel to Amsterdam has at least one photo there. And it’s totally fine! 🙂
Contrary to popular belief, there isn’t one “I Amsterdam Sign” in the city. The popular one is in front of the Rijksmuseum in Museum Quarter but there is also one more sign in the city. And it is right in front of the Amsterdam Schiphol Airport. You will probably see both of them, but our favorite is the one in the Museum Quarter for sure! 🙂
Museum Quartier (Museumplein)
Holland is a country where lots of well-known and special artists have been born and raised such as Vincent van Gogh, Rembrandt, Bosch, Jan van Eyck etc… So Amsterdam, being one of the most known cities of Holland, has a great selection of museums to explore.
Especially in the Museum Quarter, you get to see the Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum and Van Gogh Museum which are the most popular ones in the city. We think you need to explore at least one of them because it is a great chance to get to know painters’ lives and masterpieces! Don’t forget to pick up some stuff from Museum Gift Shops to collect some memories. You can find some postcards of popular paintings, maybe write your thoughts or date of that that particular day and save them to remember what you have seen and felt that day! It is a great way to create memorable moments!
Red Light District
Wandering around the Red Light District streets is definitely one of the cliche activities in Amsterdam! In this famous district -we think you probably heard some things about this places’ fame too- you will see women coming from different places in the world, sitting behind glass windows. These windows are the places where legal prostitution acts are experienced. Also, the district takes it’s name from the red lights all over the streets. If you would like to see the Red Light District out of curiosity, it is totally safe to wander around streets. Just make sure that you are well-protected from the pick pockets. There are also sex-shops, sex shows and bars in the area if you would like to grab a beer.
You are probably thinking to yourself: What is so special about going to a coffee shop in Amsterdam? Well, coffee shops in Amsterdam are quite different than any other coffee places around the world. Soft drugs are legal in Amsterdam so it is totally legal to buy them in the coffee shops! You will see lots of coffee shops throughout your visit in this city; the most popular ones are The Bulldog, Bluebird and Barney’s.
Well, one more thing, you need to keep in mind that you should be over 18 years old and have a passport or ID with you if you want to sit in a coffee shop. They will check your ID for sure! Any kind of alcoholic beverages are not sold in coffee shops and it is strictly forbidden to drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes!
PS: We don’t recommend any of these bad habits. But visiting a coffee shop and seeing the atmosphere out of curiosity is totally okay! 🙂 Over all, it is a one time experience.
Canal Tour with a Boat
When we think of Amsterdam, the first image that pops into our mind is the fabulous canals… So it is almost mandatory to experience a canal cruise/tour in Amsterdam! There are many canal tours that you could choose from: hop-on-hop off tours, romantic candle light tours or private tours held just for your group or your family.
Exploring Amsterdam floating down the canals with a boat tour is a magical experience. Its is also a great way to get to know the city better! Best-known and safe tour operators that you could choose are Blue Boat and Stromma. We agree that canal tour with a boat is a cliche, yet it is definitely A MUST!
Appeltaart, Dutch Cheese, Stroopwafels and Patat
Even though Dutch cuisine is not so popular worldwide, there are great local foods to try out! Appeltaart which is basically an apple pie prepared with extra cinnamon, sugar, lemon juice and currant is a delicious dessert to taste. Another sweet is the stroopwafels; a tiny waffle prepared with lots of syrup, brown sugar and butter. You can find these tiny treats in any corner of the streets or even at any gift shop.
Dutch cheese is also so popular around the world, they have incredible variety of goudas! The best news is that you could go to any cheese shop and try out all the cheeses! YUMMY! Another great idea is to buy some for your loved ones, to take home! Last but not least, you should definitely eat Patat (french fries) if you visit Amsterdam. It’s thicker than the usual french fries and you have like 20 different options as a sauce! You get to choose the ones you want and all of them are delicious! Vleminckx Amsterdam is the place to try out patat. A quick suggestion; do not go to Vleminckx if you are too hungry, because you will have to wait for the line since they are too famous. 🙁
Bonus: Rent a Bike!
When you arrive to Amsterdam, you will be surprised with the amount of bikes you will see. Be ready to see men in suits or women wearing high-heels riding bicyles! Isn’t it crazy? Everybody uses bikes as transportation. So we recommend you to rent a bike especially if the weather is okay. Not only will it make it easier for you to go wherever you want, but it is also a great way to cycle between those canals. You will fall in love with Amsterdam even more.
Written by Gizem Dereci