Visiting Amsterdam – Part 2 of Living in Amsterdam

There is so much to do in Amsterdam, that I could not fit everything in just 1 article. Here is the continuation of part 1 where I will let you in on all the things you must do while visiting Amsterdam.

Shopping in Amsterdam

Markets in Amsterdam have their own charm. Bloemenmarkt – is the world’s only floating flower market. You can find anything to do with flowers in this market including tulip bulb and Cannabis seeds. The market was founded in 1862. Albert Cuyp is another market that I found very very interesting – you can find anything there. Street food, vegetable vendors, beautiful dresses, jewellery pieces, watches, art pieces, clothes, hardware shops. You name it, and it is there. If you want to shop for gifts and branded items head towards The Nine Streets.

Bloemenmarkt, the famous floating flower market in Amsterdam
De Hallen

And yes, if you are visiting Amsterdam, do not miss De Hallen. It is another most happening place in Amsterdam where you will find most locals coming to have a relaxed time. It is a multifunctional complex which opened its gate in 2015 in an erstwhile tram depot. This tram depot is a national monument which was built between 1902 and 1928. De Hallen has three halls – Filmhallen (biggest independent cinema hall complex in the country with 9 uniquely decorated cinema halls), The Make Store, and my favourite Foodhallen. Foodhallen is the hall where you can find street food from across the globe, served under one roof. Even though it is usually filled with locals on weekends, it has a great atmosphere.

The iconic canals of Amsterdam

Oh! How can I forget Amsterdam Canals? They are most prized possessions. There is about 50 Km of canals in Amsterdam with 1281 bridges. Taking a canal cruise in Amsterdam is a must as it shows you off to the most prominent places in the city. Ummmm…the entire is around canals, so you can pretty much see the entire city from its canals and it is beautiful – the architecture and many stories.

A boat on a canal in Amsterdam
Photo courtesy: Nidhi Singh
Of gardens and parks

Many gardens of Amsterdam are perfect places to relax on sunny days. My favourites are Vondelpark and garden in front of Rijksmuseum. Vondelpark is spread across 47 hectares and is a large urban park in Amsterdam. The park opened its gates in 1865 and is now named after the poet, Joost van den Vondel. With more than 10 million visitors a year park symbolizes Amsterdam’s love for art and artists.

Man sitting on the grass in a park
Photo courtesy: Nidhi Singh
Visiting Heineken

The Heineken Experience was amazing. It was different from other brewery visits I have been on. Apart from learning about the brand’s history, you can engage in beer brewing experience in a sequence of activities including a short 4D video. In addition to beer tasting, you can also learn how to pour your beer perfectly – and they give you certificate too.

Old Heineken Brewery, now the Heineken Experience museum in Amsterdam
The Red Light District

The Red Light District of Amsterdam is quite an interesting area, even though my own views on about commoditizing human beings are not in sync with it. You can find world first condom shop in here – Condomerie – and many more sex toy shops and sex shops. If you have a feeling that it might not be a safe place to be in, wipe that out completely. It is as safe as a city can get. Being a highly touristy area, it might be common to have your pocket picked (not my experience though) but it is not unsafe in any other way – daytime or night. The Red light district is a proof of Amsterdam’s open mindset about many things in life.

Red-light district in Amsterdam
Red-light district in Amsterdam
Keukenhof Tulip Garden

And now, I have saved the best for the last. Keukenhof Tulip Garden, are the reason I went again to Amsterdam in April of Last year. I have been wanted to see them for so long, and the wait was totally worth it. Keukenhof is also known as the Garden of Europe. It is one of the most beautiful flower gardens in the world and attracts more than one million visitors every year. Over 7 million flower bulbs are planted in this 79 acres garden every year. Gardens are open to visitors during the spring season (mid-March to mid-May).

rows of different coloured tulips that you must check out if visiting amsterdam in spring
Photo courtesy: Nidhi Singh

There are few things I could not see in Amsterdam which includes the famous Anne Frank House – which was mainly due to long queue for it both times I went there. There are still so many things I want so experience in Amsterdam, that I am sure to pay a visit few more times.

If you want to know more about Amsterdam, ask me a question in the comments section and I will definitely try to help you with it.

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