MY 5 FAVOURITE PLACES IN AMSTERDAM

Hoi Mensen!

A couple of days ago I was asked to suggest a couple of must-visit places in Holland. As you know (or equally may not know) I'm a Rotterdam native, BUT most of my activities are spent in either Amsterdam or The Hague. So I've compiled a list of my favourite things to do when I'm back at home. This of course does not include sitting my lazy behind catching up with Dutch TV like Goede Tijden, Slechte Tijden, whilst consuming obscene amounts of Dutch spiced cookies (I'm a sucker for comfort!). I try to go back to Holland about 3 times a year, depending on what my money's saying, so this list will only compromise on places I've visited in the last 2 or 3 years. Also it's worth mentioning, that this list does not include tourist-y places like the Dam (comparable to Hyde Park in London) or Leidsestraat (comparable to Leicester Square in London).

Also for journey planning and more info on train, bus and tram prices, please do check out 9292.nl  It is the Dutch transport guide/planner. Unfortunately as I don't drive, I've no driving directions for any of the places listed below. 


Amsterdam

1| Negenstraatjes (Nine Little Streets): 
First up, is Negenstraatjes. As an unconfessed shopaholic, obviously, the first place I'd point out is this little gold mine hidden in the belly of Amsterdam. This place is on top of this list because it is an absolute must visit. The Nine Streets of Amsterdam are essentially little clusters of diverse thrift/vintage store, cafes, hotels all spread out across nine streets in the Central of Amsterdam. The Nine Streets are perfect for starting out in exploring. This is because a lot of museums and attractions are located around this area. Be careful though, if you have no sense of direction like I do, you'll end up travelling in circles!

How to get there: 
Any tram going into Central Amsterdam towards De Dam or Central Station. 

More information:


2| Waterlooplein
Second on my list, a little cheaper than Negenstraatjes but equally as awesome is Waterloo Plein. Probably my favourite flea market I've ever visited. It's a square in the centre of Amsterdam with lots of ridiculously cheap market stalls, open daily (apart from Saturdays). Here you will find anything from old photographs, vintage clothes and teapots (random stuff!) to bicycles and other fun little things.

How to get there: 
Tram 9, 14 Metro Lines51, 53, and 54. Get off at Waterlooplein

More information:


SasaLaBa
3| Food & Friends Amsterdam
Okay so this one isn't really a 'place', but still a favourite of mine. Wouldn't it be awesome if you were in Amsterdam for a little while and wanted to eat some good food and meet some new people? Sounds too good to be true right? Well it's true and it's good.

"Want to meet new people in Amsterdam? Want to enjoy a nice homemade meal?
Every dinner will host a small number of guests, this is to guarantee the best atmosphere around the 
table, giving everyone the possibility and the time to interact with the other guests
The food is all homemade, and freshly/warm served; the recipes and ingredients 
are chosen and adapted to the preferences of the guests (as far as it is possible..)"

It's essentially the foolproof way to get stuck right in Dutch culture and events. All you have to do is talk and eat! The mastermind behind this idea is my dear friend Salvatore (above in white shirt), who owns this group. I think it's a brilliant idea, especially when I'm kind of doing nothing when in NL.

How to get there:
Subject to change

More information:
Join the Facebook group for updates: 


4| The MC Theatre 
Want to be entertained? Check out the MC Theatre. It's a theatre dedicated to showcasing young and talented individuals in Amsterdam, particularly the urban scene. Also if you're thinking more along the lines of an evening out, then the MC Theatre is definitely the one to visit for plays, modern dance and festivals. 

How to get there: 
Bus line: 22 or 21 and get off at Nassaustraat.  Tram 10  and get off at Van Limburg Stirumplein.

More information:
http://www.mconline.nl/mconline/index.xql


5| Foam Photography Museum
The Foam is a photography museum located in the centre of Amsterdam (Again!), a lovely little (literally, the museum is so small!) gallery with a wide range of photography genres. I will admit that it's a teeny bit difficult to find as it's so hidden and the building doesn't exactly stand out from the rest, but lovely nonetheless. I'd definitely suggest Foam museum if you've any interest in photography or just like museums! Also because it's so close to everything else in central Amsterdam, you (almost) might as well!

How to get there: 
Tram 16 and 24. Going towards Central, get off at 'Keizersgracht'

More information: 



This is me finishing my Fries with Peanut Sauce in 2012. I finished this quicker than you could say YOLO

Foods that will change your life.
  • You must try Patat met Pindasaus (fries with peanut sauce) Or you might possibly die
  • Haaring. Even if you hate it after you've tasted it, you must try it.
  • If you're in Amsterdam for a prolonged period, get into the habit of buying fresh rolls from your local bakery. They taste soooo incredibly yummy and the gorgeous aromas of freshly baked bread will knock you the hell out.
  • Having grown up eating cheese every single day, I now resent the delicatessen, but don't let my experience of it put you off it. Just do it. Buy a chunk of cheese and just... Eat it... Have a glass of milk nearby to wash it all down. 
  • Vanilla Vla. Go to Albert Heijn and buy some. I loved this growing up, I had it everyday for breakfast with some rolls. I think it's custard... I'm pretty sure it's custard. It's thick and creamy and it comes in a milk-like carton.
  • Also while you're in Albert Heijn, pick up some Hagelslag, mmkaay? Pour some of that isht on your buttered bread and then praise the Lord. 
  • FRIKANDEL!!!!!!!!! Say.No.More. 
  • Finally. Say this with me, Spe-Cu-Laas. Also known as Dutch-Spiced-Biscuits. Aka the baddest biscuits in the entire world. (which you can get in Sainsburys now!) Rich tea? Digestive biscuits? Yeah England, that's real cute, move aside for the real deal. 

*Cleans up drool* Omg I'm dying from food lust looking at this list. It's obvious why God relocated me to England, because if I still lived in Holland, I'd be massively overweight. Damn.

SO That was it! I'm feeling a little homesick now. Don't mind me, I'm just going to wallow in self pity. But I hope you learned a thing or two or perhaps it has sparked a tiny yearning to visit the place? Let me know if you've been to Holland before or would like to! Also, since it might possibly be my last year in London, I might do a similar post for places in London I love? Me nah know, yes or no? If yes It'll be in the works now. Hope all your weeks are going fine fine too!

Thanks for reading!

x