When planning your visit, where to stay in Amsterdam is the first thing you need to figure out. Most tourists stay in the city center, inside the canal rings. Although it's a convenient area to use as a home base to explore the different attractions, the center isn't the most charming area in Amsterdam. In addition, the center also gets flooded by tourists and you won't experience the charm that Amsterdam has to offer if you stay there.
Instead, I recommend to stay in one of the neighborhoods just outside the city center. You'll still be close enough to popular tourist highlights but you avoid the tourist masses. You'll get to experience what it is like to live in Amsterdam like a local. Isn't that what traveling is all about?
Read on to find out what my top three neighborhoods in Amsterdam are!
Where to stay in Amsterdam
There are three neighborhoods that I recommend you stay in Amsterdam: "De Pijp," "De Jordaan" and "De Negen Straatjes." These neighborhoods are not far from the center, within reach of many city highlights, but not as jammed with tourists than the center of town. You'll have a more local experience staying in these areas.
My favorite neighborhood in Amsterdam is an area known as De Pijp. It’s located just south of the center. It exhibits several good features, like great restaurants, lots of bars and cafes, the famous Albert Kuyp market and lots of small shops and galleries. Watch the video below and you'll understand why De Pijp is my favorite neighborhood in Amsterdam.
De Pijp a great place to stay for tourists who want to avoid the big tourists crowds in the center and mingle a with the locals, but still want to be centrally located. Having lived in this area for 3 years, I know it quite well so I wrote a special section about the neighborhood De Pijp.
Accommodation tip: I recommend the Sir Albert Hotel. I've stayed there a few times myself, location is perfect and good value for money. It also hosts one of my favorite restaurants in town. You can book here or check out this screenshot.
Another nice neighborhood is the Jordaan. It's located just west of the city center, stretching from the northern end of the city all the way down to near the Leidseplein.
One of the main attractions in this neighborhood is the Anne Frank's house. This is where Anne and her family hid from the Germands in World War II, as described in her famous diary.
The Jordaan is home to a vast number of cafes, restaurants and bars as well as art galleries. Many events take place here in the summer. Although it used to be a working-class neighborhood, the Jordaan has become one of the most popular neighborhoods in Amsterdam and house prices are amongst the most expensive in The Netherlands.
This neighorbood is one of Amsterdam's most delightful shopping areas. It's named after the nine little streets that it consists of, between Leidsestraat and Raadhuisstraat. The Negen Straatjes hosts a great atmosphere, unique (mostly small) shops and a number of great lunch places. If you happen to stroll around this neighborhood during lunch time, you can't go wrong with the food at either BRIX or Pluk.
The Negen Straatjes is only a short walk from Damn Square, but manages to keep a very local feel. The neighborhood is also known for its many small coffeeshops. If you're a coffee fan, make sure you don't miss Screaming Beans.
There aren't a lot of hotels in these three neighborhoods. A good alternative to staying in a hotel is renting an apartment on a short stay website. I recommend Airbnb, but you can also try Wimdu and Homeaway.
Last but not least, if you want to stay in my house, feel free to check out my listing on Airbnb. I've hosted over 200 groups in Amsterdam so far and I'd love to host you as well!
How to get to Amsterdam
Amsterdam has only one major airport: Schiphol Airport. Schiphol (Airport code "AMS") is located just a few kilometers south of Amsterdam and is regularly voted as one of the top ten airports in the world.
To find cheap flights to Amsterdam I recommend using Jet Radar.
Getting to Amsterdam from the Airport
By taxi: This is an expensive option, it's a 15-20 minute ride and it will set you back around 40 to 50 euros. Only use official taxis that are waiting outside of the airport terminals. Don't take a solicited ride, ignore anyone who comes up to you offering a taxi service, the official taxi drivers will be waiting in their cars and won't hassle you!
By Uber taxi: A better option is to order an Uber taxi, this will cost you around 20 to 25 euros depending on traffic and you're guaranteed that you won't get screwed or taken for a tour.
By train: Trains to Amsterdam Central Station depart from platform 1 and 2 in the arrival plaza every 10 minutes. The ride takes 15 minutes and cost 4,20 Euros for a one way ticket. You can also take a train to "Amsterdam Zuid" or "Amsterdam Rai" if you are staying in the south of the city. There are yellow ticket vending machines that accept major credit cards, so it's easy to buy a ticket.
Last but not least, enjoy your stay in Amsterdam!. Feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions or shoot me an email at [email protected]
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