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Amsterdam, Netherlands

Canal Houses, Amsterdam
Canal Houses, Amsterdam


Amsterdam is the largest city in the Netherlands famous for it's liberal laws, red light districts, canals, windmills, and "coffee" culture. Holland is the name of two states in the Netherlands and not the country. Dutch is the name of the language and the inhabitants. When walking in the city, stay out of the bike lanes and watch out for bikes!

Where You're Docked

Cruise ships primarily dock at Passenger Terminal Amsterdam just east of the Centraal Station right in the city center. There is a tram stop outside where you can take tram 26 one stop to Centraal Station (the city's main transport hub) or you can easily walk to the station (15 minutes). Cruise schedule and info here http://www.amsterdamcruiseport.com

Waterland Terminal west of the city has been added as a cruise pier. Shuttles may be offered to Sloterdijk Station which is on the line between Schipol airport and Centraal Station.

Both Passenger Terminal Amsterdam and Centraal Station offer luggage storage for those with late flights.

Felison Terminal by the entrance to the North Sea and 30km west of the city may also be used. Transportation info here http://www.amsterdamcruise.nl/getting-here-fct

Cruise Ship Docked in Amsterdam

Passenger Terminal Amsterdam

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Waterland Terminal

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Felison Terminal

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Money and Tipping

The Netherlands's currency is the Euro. Credit cards are accepted at a lot of places but most self-serve terminals require chip and pin cards. Ask before trying to use a magnetic swipe card. A small tip (5-10%) is appreciated when dining in restaurants or taking a taxi. Make sure you are not shortchanged by unscrupulous shopkeepers by indicating how much you are giving them.

Local Transportation

The best way to get around in Amsterdam is to either walk, rent a bike, or take the tram or metro network. Fares are €3.20 for a one hour disposable chip card or €8 for a 24 hr pass (Mar 2019, multiple days available as well). Tram and metro map linked from here http://en.gvb.nl/reisinformatie/plattegronden/Pages/plattegronden.aspx Transit info here http://www.gvb.nl If you follow a canal, you will end up doing a semi-circular loop since canals and streets ring out from Centraal Station.

The IAmsterdam card offers one to three day transit passes with discounted/free entry to many attractions. Details here http://www.iamsterdam.com/en/

Amsterdam is very bike friendly with separated lanes, a bike share system and many shops offering rentals. Bike tours are also a good way to see the city. As a pedestrian, make sure you are not walking in a bike lane.

Another way to explore the city is with the hop-on, hop-off canal bus. http://www.canal.nl/en/canal-bus City Sightseeing offers HOHO bus tours. http://www.citysightseeingamsterdam.nl/ Multiple companies run canal tours.

Uber operates in Amsterdam.

To/From the Airport

Taking the train is the easiest way to get from Schipol Airport (airport code: AMS) to Centraal Station. Ticket machines may not accept foreign credit cards so it's better to find a staffed counter to purchase tickets or you can also buy your ticket online with an app (generates a barcode that is scanned at the gate). Online tickets have a discount and no ticket surcharge. Trains are frequent, tickets cost €5.50 (includes €1 surcharge for disposable ticket) and journey time is under 20 minutes. http://www.schiphol.nl A taxi should cost around €45 to €50. Train info here http://www.ns.nl


Search hotels in Amsterdam here


Prices updated Mar 2019

  • Red Light District - This pretty neighborhood transforms to Amsterdam's most famous tourist attraction in the evening. Near Centraal Station.
  • Anne Frank's House - The original house has been expanded to the building next door. The neighborhood is very pretty with Westerkerk church just to the south along the canal. There is also a statue by the church. Take line 13, or 17 to Westermarkt stop from Centraal. Entry €10 and can be prepurchased online with a small reservation fee. http://www.annefrank.org/
  • Rijksmuseum (State Museum) - Collection of Dutch painting and historical artifacts. Home of Rembrandt's large and impressive Night Watch painting. Open daily 9am-5pm. Entry €20 and can be prepurchased online with a small discount. Take tram 2, 12 or 5 from Centraal to Rijksmuseum stop. http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/
  • Van Gogh Museum - Large collection of Van Gogh's work. Near the Rijksmuseum and one more stop on Tram 2, 12 or 5 at Van Baerlestraat station. Open daily 9am-5pm. Entry €19. http://www.vangoghmuseum.nl/
  • Royal Palace - Located in Dam Square
  • Heineken Experience - One of the better brewery tours with lots of interactive exhibits. Entrance on Stadhouderskade Street. Entry €21. €3 discount for non-refundable, prepaid online tickets. From Centraal station, catch line 24 and get out at tram stop Marie Heinekenplein. https://www.heineken.com/Heineken-Experience
  • Museum Our Lord in the Attic - A secret church in a house in the Red Light District. http://www.opsolder.nl/

Shopping & Restaurants

There are narrow pedestrian shopping streets on Nieuwendijk and Kalverstraat. There are a few flower markets including a floating one on Singel between Muntplein and Koningsplein. Albert Cuyp Market is a famous street market located on the same named street. It is open 9:30am to 5pm Monday to Saturday. Nine Streets is an area with unique and interesting shops.

Some department stores have excellent, self-serve cafeterias providing good value. La Place has restaurants on Kalverstraat and at the library by the cruise terminal. Hema has inexpensive cafes on both Nieuwendijk and direct across La Place on Kalverstraat. Authentic chinese food can be found in Chinatown. Indonesian and Surinamese restaurants are also popular with these countries being former Dutch colonies. For local specialties, try croquettes, poffertjes (mini dutch pancakes), oliebollen (dutch donuts), stroopwafel (waffles with embedded syrup), fries with mayo, and herring for the more adventurous. Croquettes can be found at the coin-operated, self-service chain Febo and even McDonalds has a McKroket burger.

Post Offices

There is a post office in Centraal Station.


Restaurants and cafes may provide free wifi to customers. Passenger Terminal Amsterdam may have free wifi. The public library opposite the railroad tracks from the terminal has internet and wifi for €1 for every 30 minutes. http://www.oba.nl/oba/english/internet-and-wifi-in-the-library.html

Maps (right-click to save)

Downloadable map https://www.iamsterdam.com/media/pdf/map-amsterdam-centre.pdf

Tram map

Downloadable pdf version https://en.gvb.nl/sites/default/files/railkaart2019-2.pdf


Amsterdam Weather Forecast


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Page last modified on October 06, 2019, at 09:12 PM
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