3 helpful tips when traveling to Amsterdam for the Summer

Posted by on April 18, 2013

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The capital city of the Netherlands has long been recognized as one of them most popular destinations for a romantic getaway, rivaling the cities of Paris, New York and Rome. Amsterdam is a huge favorite among tourists especially among backpackers and daytrippers, with estimates of over 16 million people visiting the city on daytrips alone each year. The great number and diverse nature of Amsterdam’s many attractions are but one of the reasons why tourists can’t seem to get enough of the city’s charms. Its strategic location is also another factor for its popularity, being just an hour or two away by train or plane from Germany, Belgium, Denmark, France and the UK. You can arrive in the morning for a daytrip exploring the sights and sounds of Amsterdam and be back in your home country right around dinnertime. Talk about convenience!

Amsterdam

Amsterdam

We’ve come up with 3 innovative tips to help you navigate Amsterdam’s landmarks and notable tourist attractions:

Drop by the Local Tourism Office- yes, yes, you’ve diligently done your research about Amsterdam’s must-see sights and attractions, come up with a detailed itinerary and are confident you’ve got all bases for your trip covered. Well, give yourself a thumbs-up for a job well done but do drop by Amsterdam’s Tourism Office nonetheless. The people here are quite friendly, giving helpful tips and pointers on the best tours to take, keep you updated on which attractions and landmarks are closed or currently undergoing renovations and even where to stay if you haven’t booked a hotel or apartment in the city yet. Not to worry though, when it comes to hostels, transient rooms and cheap apartments Amsterdam will not disappoint, accommodations are plentiful whatever your budget and preference. The people at the Tourism Office will even let you know if and when the city is offering discounts for group tours or deals for a one-day city pass. Remember, they are there to guide and help out tourists, who knows, you might even make a new friend or two right?

Travel light- as mentioned previously, the city’s many attractions make it a popular destination for people eager for daytrips and active sightseeing, frequent backpackers just passing through and even a few weekend warriors. A daypack containing your camera, some cash, credit cards, your passport, a bottle of water and a fresh change of clothes are the only suggested essentials we recommend you bring along if you are only in for a quick rundown of Amsterdam’s top attractions and be right back home come nighttime. Carrying a light pack also let’s you move around easier as opposed to lugging a trolley or stuffed suitcase along with you when you travel. This also gives you enough space to cram in all the souvenirs and memorabilia to take back to family and friends at home.

Ride a bike- Amsterdam is one of the world’s friendliest places to ride a bicycle to get around and take note, people from all levels of the social strata use them. Cars and automobiles are discouraged in the city center, parking is quite expensive and streets are often one-way. Of course there is always the Metro and the tramlines to help you explore and get around faster but if you truly want to experience Amsterdam the Dutch way, riding a bike is still the best way to do so. Lovely Vondelpark, which is right in the heart of the city, is a fantastic place to explore by bike. Amsterdam’s relatively flat terrain, a combined 400 kilometers of bike roads and paths (including public bike racks), combined with excellent facilities for cyclists and bike enthusiasts make riding a bike still the best mode of transportation in the city.

Photo:  dieter.steffmann

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