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How to spend a long weekend in Amsterdam

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With two bank holidays in May, now is the perfect time to start planning a long weekend getaway - and with easy flight and ferry routes, Amsterdam is an ideal choice for a city break this spring.

There’s more to this city than hash bars and the red light district, so here’s our guide to the best activities to enjoy on a long bank holiday weekend in Amsterdam.

Culture

Away from the cafes and nightclubs, Amsterdam is a hot spot for culture and information, in the form of art, history,music and more.

Van Gogh Museum – Home to some of the artist’s most famous creations, including Sunflowers, Almond Blossom and The Bedroom, art lovers from all over the world head to the Van Gogh Museum to learn more about the tortured painter and soak up his colourful creations.

Entry - €17

Address – Paulus Potterstraat 7, 1071 CX Amsterdam

Anne Frank’s House – Located directly on a canal-side in the centre of the city, the hiding annexe of the young Jewish wartime diarist Anne Frank, in which she and her family hid from Nazi invaders for two years, has become an informative museum teaching about her life.

Entry - €9

Address – Prinsengracht 263-267, 1016 GV Amsterdam

De Burrtboerderij –This volunteer-operated farm is situated right in the heart of the city, just a 10 minute cycle from Central Station. The farm is an ideal place to chill out, practise yoga, take part in events, have a drink or simply soak up the relaxing countryside without having to stray too far from the city.

Entry - free

Address - Spaarndammerdijk 319, 1014 AA Amsterdam

Exploring

There’s no shortage of fun activities to enjoy in the city, but we’ve gathered a selection of our favourites to get you started.

Canal tour – One of the best ways to experience the city is from one of the many wonderful canals that wind throughout the city. Whether you take a tour or a water bus, you’ll be able to see the sites of the city from the water. Waterway to have a good time!

Vondelpark – Vondelpark is the largest city park in Amsterdam and is home to a series of lagoons, pathways and even a colony of parakeets that inhabit its trees. With imposing sculptures, an open air theatre and a maze of pathways through the grass and trees, this is an ideal picnic spot and great chance to enjoy nature within the city centre.

Cycling – Amsterdam is world famous for its cycle-centric culture, so get on your bike and either take a cycling tour to explore the city or simply rent your own and make your way through the city streets independently.

Nightlife

Once the sun goes down, the Amsterdam nightlife kicks off. Here are a few of our favourite picks:

Vesper – Named after the only woman James Bond ever truly loved, Vesper is renowned for its award winning cocktails and intimate, laid back ambience. This bar is the perfect venue for adding a touch of class to a night out in this buzzing city.

Entry – free

Address – Vinkenstraat 57, 1013 JM Amsterdam

Brouweij’t IJ – This microbrewery and pub is housed right next to the mill, meaning all beers are served fresh from the tanks. The large terrace offers a great spot for enjoying the city and the bar offers a variety of great Dutch bar snacks and dishes.

Entry – free

Address – Funenkade 7, 1018 AL Amsterdam

Studio 80 – This small, intimate nightclub focuses on underground electronic music and draws both international DJs and local heroes to the decks each weekend. For a taste of Amsterdam’s vibrant nightlife, Studio 80 is a great starting point where you’ll enjoy a unique clubbing experience or new live acts, DJs and music producers.

Entry – variable

Address – Rembrandtplein 17, 1017 CT Amsterdam

Dining

What better way to experience a city than by sampling the culinary delights it has to offer?

De Culinaire Werkplaats – Penned as more of an ‘artistic food laboratory’ than a café or restaurant, the incredible designs of the dishes at De Culinaire Werkplaats make eating here a truly unique experience that’s bound to impress and surprise. The best bit? You can decide how much to pay once you’ve finished your meal, so you can choose the final price for these exquisitely innovative menus.

Address – Fannius Scholtenstraat 10, 1051 EX Amsterdam

Tomaz – For a taste of classic Dutch home cuisine, the intimate Tomaz restaurant is perfect for a bite to eat, whether it’s an afternoon drink with snack or a full evening dinner. Located in one of Amsterdam’s nicest medieval streets, it also boasts a lovely terrace for soaking up the spring sunshine.

Address - Begijnensteeg 6-8, 1012 PN Amsterdam

Accommodation

The Flying Pig Uptown – Located right by Vondelpark and conveniently located for the museum district, the Flying Pig Uptown is a party-focused hostel with a buzzing bar and kitchen. The young, energetic atmosphere makes this an ideal sleeping spot for nightlife loving travellers.

Address – Vossiusstraat 46, 1071 AJ Amsterdam

A private houseboatFor a quieter, more personal experience, consider hiring your very own houseboat where you’ll be able to experience Amsterdam from the canal itself. This 1901 vessel once transported goods on the rivers and canals and has been completely furnished, making it a cosy apartment and a spectacular experience.

Address – Nieuwmarkt, Amsterdam

For more tips and information on the city and how to reach it, check out this handy Amsterdam destination guide from London City Airport.




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