Planning a trip to the Netherlands? How about sending your guy to the brewery while you tiptoe through the tulips at the famous Keukenhof Gardens? Lorena Mayr gives you some tips for where to go while in Amsterdam.
Going on a trip to Amsterdam? There’s so much to do and see! Plan several days for Amsterdam, especially if you want to see the famous tulip fields, which can easily take a whole day.
Did you know that the Netherlands has the highest museum density in the world, with almost 1,000 museums? It’s unlikely you’ll get to every one of them, so here’s a shortlist of the most popular museums in Amsterdam to get you started:
Rijksmuseum: Here you can view the masterworks of Dutch art history. It’s popular, so make sure you go early in the morning or during Friday night extended hours. Beautiful paintings, by the way!
Van Gogh Museum: Internationally one of the most important painters of the 19th century, almost a quarter of Van Gogh’s works are owned and exhibited by this museum. Also, some of the paintings by his contemporaries, Monet and Gauguin can be seen – definitely worth a visit!
Anne Frank House: also very popular – go early in the morning or late in the evening. You get to have a glimpse of the tight quarters where this brave young girl, her family and others hid for many years from the Nazis.
Click here for more museums to visit in Amsterdam:
More things to do:
Make sure you walk along the picturesque canals, like the Prinsengracht, the Brouwersgracht and Leliegracht.
Read more about the canals in Amsterdam and their history:
There are also floating flower markets and one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world, called Hortus Botanicus Amsterdam.
But do you have a problem, because your guy isn’t interested in seeing flowers? Split-up for a day! Here are some ideas of what he can do while you go see the beautiful tulip gardens:
Rent a bike: it is relatively cheap and he can get around quicker, plus it is a fun way to explore the city. There are specially assigned bike paths, but beware of the Dutch, who don’t like to have to stop for tourists who don’t know where they are going!
The Heineken Brewery: they don’t call themselves a museum, this is the Heineken Experience. It is an interactive museum dedicated to all things barley.
Their first brewery was opened in 1863 and expanded through the years. It closed in 1988 and was largely demolished, but the building that remains is popular and yes, he can have a cold one at the end of his visit!
It’s easy to find, and several trams go right by it on their routes.
The Keukenhof Gardens: the main tulip viewing season is from the last week in March to mid-May. The gardens are astounding, and you can take a walk and admire the incredible colors of the tulips, and other flowers, perfectly arranged.
To get there, you can either go on a tour (ask at the tourist information offices in Amsterdam) or you can take a bus: first go to the Schiphol airport, and from there you must take a bus towards Lisse (bus 58). It takes about 35 to 40 minutes to get there, but it is definitely worth it!
Read more at the official Keukenhof Gardens website: http://www.keukenhof.nl/
To end your visit in Amsterdam, you can take a canal boat tour. The boats have glass ceilings, and it gives you a different perspective of the canals, bridges and architecture of the canal houses, churches and palaces.
Before you go, make sure you try out a tiny chocolate shop we discovered: it’s called Dutch Homemade, and they have ice cream, excellent coffee and superb chocolates, made by a young couple who are trained chocolatiers.
They are located near the FOAM photography museum, on the Vijzelstraat 69, close to one of the main canals, Herrengracht. The beautiful hand-made chocolates make a nice present to bring back home to anyone!
Have you been to Amsterdam? Did you see the Keukenhof gardens and maybe also the Heineken Brewery? Tell us your experiences there and share any more ideas of interesting places to visit in the Netherlands!