In October we spent an amazing weekend in Amsterdam exploring some of our favourite places in the city, as well as some sites we’d never been to before. We found 48 hours was the perfect amount of time to cram in everything we wanted to do! Amsterdam is a great city for a short getaway and the best christmas present for a loved one!
Hopefully you’ve already seen our previous blog posts ‘Five Different Things To Do In Amsterdam‘ and ‘Your Food Journey Through Amsterdam‘ meaning that what we mention in this post won’t be completely new to you.
Our flight landed in the early evening so we jumped straight on the train to Amsterdam Central Station and walked to our hotel from there. We stayed at the lovely Lancaster Hotel – part the Hampshire group. It was a great location meaning we could easily walk to all of the attractions we wanted to see. Plus, with free tea, coffee and apples in reception we weren’t complaining! Who doesn’t love free food!
After checking into the hotel we headed down to Rembrandt Square for a spot of dinner, taking in the beautiful sunset over the canals on the way. Afterwards we walked up to Dam Square to explore the markets and of course sample all the delicious sweet treats they had on offer – from Nutella waffles to chocolate covered strawberries you’ll be spoilt for choice.
Our first stop was The Avocado Show to fill up on a dreamy breakfast including an avocado rose, Eggs Benedict and refreshing smoothie.
From there it is only a six-minute walk to Amsterdam’s museum quarter where you will find the classic I Am Amsterdam Sign, as well as the famous Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, Van Gogh Museum and the Moco Museum. We particularly loved walking around the Rijksmuseum’s garden and exploring the Moco Museum’s brilliant collection of Banksy artwork. Whoever he is!
We spent all morning wandering to and from these amazing museums – any art lovers dream! However, we hadn’t quite had our artistic fill and walked over to Foam, Amsterdam’s photography gallery located in a beautiful canal house located about 20 minutes from the museum quarter.
Once we’d seen the amazing photography at Foam we headed around the corner to Bloemenmarkt. A beautiful flower market that sells everything from Tulips to Cactus’, bulbs and trinkets. The perfect place to see Amsterdam’s iconic flower and buy those all-important gifts! Although we left the cactus’ – no idea how we would have got one of those back to London!
Now you may be thinking after all this walking we would have been getting a little peckish – and you would be correct! We decided it was time for a little afternoon snack and walked over to Albert Cuypmarkt to sample some delicious Amsterdam delicacies including cheese, chocolate and (of course) Stroopwafels. One particular stall we would recommend is the ‘Goudse Stroopwafels’ stand, both delicious and fresh.
Our next stop is very well known in Amsterdam – the Anne Frank House. We’d say this is a must when visiting the city, the museum is full of information and facts. Whether you know her story or not you will learn so much more. However, make sure you book early as tickets sell out quickly (we’ve made this on all of our other trips! The top room is not for the claustrophobic but really shows the real heart break of the story.
After we’d finished at the Anne Frank House – good luck with leaving with dry eyes, we decided on a lovely evening stroll around Vondelpark. Vondelpark is Amsterdam’s most well-known and beautiful parks, whether you’ve rented a bike, fancy a walk or take a picnic this is one place you won’t want to miss.
For dinner we couldn’t decide what type of food we wanted, therefore we decided to head to Foodhallen which has an array of different cuisines and most importantly an amazing Gin Bar! Next, we headed over to The Hoxton, the perfect place to put your feet up after a long day and have a drink in a relaxed and chilled environment.
For breakfast we decided to visit a lovely little cafe called Café Koosje down the road from our hotel – if you’re a fan of eggs, ham and cheese then you’ll love the omelettes.
Now, there was only one place we wanted to spend our last morning in Amsterdam and that was at Hortus Botanicus! Hortus Botanicus (again only an 8-minute walk from our hotel) is a beautiful greenhouse and gardens. You could spend hours here walking around and viewing all the amazing plants and trees. Unfortunately, we could only spend an hour here before picking our suitcases up from the hotel and heading back to Amsterdam Central Station – of course taking in all the amazing Amsterdam streets and canals for one last time!
We absolutely love Amsterdam and it quaint little houses, river boats and cafes. Even if you want to skip the main tourist attractions there is still so much to do.
Places we didn’t visit on this trip were the Heineken Experience, Art Galleries in Jordaan and boats tours on the canals. If you haven’t been we hope your booking a plane ticket right now – you will not regret it!