Amsterdam is the capital city of the Netherlands. While the city itself is rather small (only 851,000 people live in Amsterdam Proper) it is the largest city in the Netherlands. Amsterdam has been famous for its liberal attitudes towards “coffee shops,” brothels, and all night partying.
Amsterdam, (Amstelredamme) whose name means Dam on the Amstel River, was first settled as a modest fishing village in the 12th century. Over the years Amsterdam grew to become one of the countries most valuable ports. During the golden age, Amsterdam was the European hub of finance and the diamond trade. My Dutch man likes to remind me that the first publicly traded company in the world was the Dutch East India Trade Company.
Today, Amsterdam bustles with the excitement of tourism, commerce, and art. The city is built around and through a series of canals. When exploring the city, it’s easy to get lost as the sidewalks curve with the cities charming canals.
Amsterdam is a beautiful city to explore. The old world charm of the building took me back to romanticize a different time in a different era. Unlike Many other cities in Europe, Amsterdam wasn’t destroyed in the war. The Netherlands surrendered to Germans before the city could be burned.
The rich history of Amsterdam makes the city ideal to play pretend as you imagine what life was like for Anne Frank, or Van Gough. The modern philosophies of the city make it a playground for Adults to experience.
When in Amsterdam, a couple things are a must:
- Pigging out on “cone fries” (I promise you won’t regret it)
- Visiting a Coffee Shop (did someone say “The Bull Dog”
- Taking a cruise through the canals (You can hop on a boat at the central station)
- Making a royal visit to the Dam Palace
- Visiting the Anne Frank House
- Walking through the Red Light District
- Running around Amsterdam famous sites
Lucky for you, Amsterdam is a small city and you can pack a LOT into a day in Amsterdam, as long as you buy a metro day pass and have a good app to assist with directions.