Well and good! Because you just came to the right page.
In this guide, we will share with you everything you need to know and things you should consider for your trip.
From what to see, what to do, where to say and many more tips that will help you boost your one week in Amsterdam.
Our full guide covers:
- Basic Introduction
- Where to stay in Amsterdam
- How to get around
- What to see in Amsterdam
- Things to do in Amsterdam
- Tickets you have to buy before – must read
- Food and Restaurants
- Day Trips from Amsterdam
- Itinerary for Amsterdam
- Packing List
- City Map
More than a guide, we are here to help you have a smooth sailing trip and a worry-free adventure in the Venice of the North.
ALL that you need to know is here. And as travelers, too, we love sharing our side of the experience for you to have more than we had.
To officially welcome you to your one week in Amsterdam, let’s start with the basics.
1. Basic Introduction
We want to start with a simple intro to the things you need to know before coming to Amsterdam.
Currency: EUR (€)
Language Spoken: Dutch is the official language of Amsterdam.
However, most of the population speaks English well. Nevertheless, you can communicate in Amsterdam without knowing any Dutch word.
Population: More than 813,000
Known for: Aside from being known for their Red Light City, Amsterdam is known for its wonderful tulips, cheese, and canals.
Moreover, just like in other European countries, Amsterdam is also known for its bikes which has been the major transportation.
Accommodation: Choose among luxury hotels to budget-friendly hostels and apartments. Amsterdam has everything to offer for your accommodation.
Find more details in our where to stay in Amsterdam section below.
Public Transport: Public transportation in Amsterdam is through train, tram, metro, bus, and ferry.
Nevertheless, having more canals than Venice, water transportation is also widely used.
More under how to get around.
Safety: Amsterdam is generally a safe city even for a solo female traveler.
However, there are still important things you should consider. You can check out the list below:
- Be careful crossing the streets and always look out for cyclists, tram and cars.
- Pickpockets often happen in the train station and crowded areas.
- Take care of your belongings especially your ID and passport.
- Do not take pictures of prostitutes, especially around the Old Church area.
- Avoid Kolenkitbuurt, Overtoomse Veld, Amsterdam-Zuidoost and Osdorp especially at night.
City name: Having more canals than Venice, Amsterdam is called the Venice of the North.
Moreover, the city is also known as Mokum, which came from the Hebrew word “makom” which means “place”.
Electricity: 230V/50Hz (European plug). Remember to pack your travel plug adapter.
Moving on, let’s get into details now.
2. Where to stay in Amsterdam
More than its old iconic buildings and rich food culture, Amsterdam offers more than that. People often get curious about how it is to be in a city where it’s legal to engage in the vices of your preference. Making Amsterdam one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world.
Therefore, since many tourists come to discover Venice of the North, there are more accommodations than you can imagine.
From great location deals to offering great views of the city. Certainly, you would have a hard time deciding where to stay in your one week in Amsterdam.
Thus, we have narrowed and categorized a list of accommodations for you. Now, you can select which is which and what perfectly suits your travel.
Best of all, we have included a map so you see where everything is located.
Our handpicked recommendations:
- Families: Sir Adam Hotel
- Couples: Ambassade Hotel
- Luxury Travelers: Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht – a concept by Hyatt
- Design Lovers: Park Mansion Centre
- Groups: Ecomama
- Airbnb: private room with canal views
- Solo Traveler: Cocomama
- Nightlife Traveler: NH Collection Amsterdam Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky
- On a low budget: ClinkNOORD Hostel
Read our complete guide on where to stay in Amsterdam for first-time visitors.
Looking for the cheapest options? Then head to 3 Best Hostels in Amsterdam
2.1 Sir Adam Hotel – Best for Families
Offering an overlooking view of the river is Sir Adam Hotel.
Great deal for families, catch your breakfast and lunch in your one week in Amsterdam at The Butcher Social Club. Even more, guests can enjoy the terrace view while having your meals.
Moreover, the kids will appreciate the games room. They could try a game of table tennis or billiards during your stay.
Sir Adam is also featured amongst the top luxury hotels in Amsterdam.
Bike rentals are available at the hotel. From the main station you have to take a 2 minutes ferry to cross the canal. The ferry leaves every 10 minutes, so it could not be easier.
You will be rewarded with fantastic views over the city and a hipster place to stay! We LOVE this place!
Good to know: You can buy a ticket to the A’DAM LOOKOUT observation deck that offers a panoramic view of Amsterdam.
2.2 Ambassade Hotel – Best for Couples
More than a great location, Ambassade Hotel features luxurious room decors by the famous 1950’s-CoBrA movement with Louis XV furnishing.
Even more, you certainly won’t run out of a book to read in your one week in Amsterdam in the hotel. Ambassade Hotel has a library with more than 4000 books. Specifically, these books were signed by the authors during their stay at the hotel.
Furthermore, location-wise, staying at the hotel puts you close to Anne Frank’s House and the Royal Palace.
Good to know: The area places you in the shopping area near the popular brands, H&M, Nike, and Apple.
2.3 Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht – Best for Luxury Travelers
Stay in luxury in the heart of Amsterdam, choose Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht.
A hotel concept by Hyatt, each room at Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht is uniquely designed by Marcel Wanders. All rooms are equipped with a flat-screen TV, minibar and a spacious bathroom.
Moreover, you can grab a drink or two in their bar which offers a perfect view of the canal. Plus, you can proceed to the Bluespoon restaurant that serves freshly cooked meals throughout your one week in Amsterdam.
Besides, you can also visit their wellness facility that offers a spa, massages, and a sauna.
Good to know: Hotel is wheelchair friendly and also accepts to bring our fur babies with us.
2.4 Park Mansion Centre – Best for Design Lovers
Park Mansion Centre is a luxurious apartment just opposite Vondelpark.
Aside from the very spacious living room, the apartment is also installed with flair style decor chandeliers, parquet floors, and an open fireplace.
Moreover, Park Mansion Centre puts you near to some of the major museums in Amsterdam. Van Gogh Museum, Museum Square, and Rijksmuseum to name a few. All you can reach within 4-7 minutes walk from the apartment.
Good to know: Once you arrive, you are welcomed with free wines and food. Above all, get personal service from the host and unique touches such as orchids and candles during your stay for one week in Amsterdam.
2.5 Ecomama – Best for Groups
A perfect place to meet people and socialize with new acquaintances is Ecomama.
Ideal for groups, and even for solo travelers, Ecomama offers dorms and female-only rooms, too. They also have deluxe and superior rooms where you have your own private space.
More than its great location, Ecomama features a bar, a garden, and a terrace that reflects its theme of being eco-conscious.
Good to know: The hostel offers a great variety of activities like movie nights, pub crawl, happy hour, walking tours, stand-up comedy and evening entertainment.
At Hostelz.com you find a complete list with all hostels in Amsterdam. It compares prices for you on different websites. Very helpful to book cheaper.
2.6 Cocomama – Best for Solo Travelers
Your home away from home for one week in Amsterdam is Cocomama.
The staff does not only give you the best tips you can get from a local, but also a place to give you rest and comfort after a long tiring day in the city.
Furthermore, located in the heart of Amsterdam, it gives you great access to nightlife and architecture. You can reach Heineken Experience, Rijksmuseum and Purses Hendrikje within a few minute walks from the hostel.
Good to know: Get to meet their cat resident, Sunny, in Cocomama during your stay.
2.7 NH Collection Amsterdam Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky – Best for Nightlife
Choosing to stay in NH Collection Amsterdam Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky for your one week in Amsterdam puts you in a great chance for nightlife.
The Red District being known to great entertainment and best nights in the city. Located in the same place as the hotel, you are just in the right place for an amazing party experience.
Furthermore, you can kickstart your night in the hotel’s bar with a beer or two and go out for more.
Good to know: The Royal Palace is just right across the hotel.
2.8 ClinkNOORD Hostel – CHEAP Deal
Grab a place that offers great facilities in a very budget-friendly deal, stay at ClinkNOORD Hostel.
In ClinkNOORD Hostel, you can choose from a dormitory to a private room. Whichever perfectly suits you during your one week in Amsterdam.
Moreover, the hostel features a library, a common area, a cafe, and a bar.
Catch live music and performances at The ZincBAR. Or grab an afternoon coffee and pastries at the cafe. Even more, you can conduct meetings and seminars at the hostel’s business space.
Good to know: The hostel was an old 1920’s laboratory where some touches are still seen today.
3. How to get around
So, we have your accommodation set, now let us get out and explore.
Best for sightseeing: One of the easiest and most convenient ways to see the beauty of Amsterdam is through the famous Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour.
Discover Venice of the North at your own pace through the Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour which takes you to 11 landmarks. Even more, the tour also comes with a 2 boat route tickets which will take you to 10 amazing places of the city.
Public transport: Public transport in Amsterdam is relatively fast and convenient.
Moreover, they have a universal ticket that you can use for the tram, bus, and metro. As tourists, you can purchase a disposable 0ne-hour card or a day card. This is valid for one to seven days.
Tip: One-hour tickets can be bought from the conductor or driver on the tram or bus. While the day card can be either bought on the tram or booked in advance.
Bikes: Ranked as the most bike-friendly cities in the world, biking in Amsterdam is by far the most popular form of getting around.
Interestingly true, the Venice of the North has more bikes than its population. Yes, more bikes than the number of its residents.
Moreso, it has more than 18,000 miles of dedicated bike paths with signs, signals, and traffic lights designated solely for cyclists.
Walking: To explore more of Amsterdam, I suggest walking through it.
Truly, the city is entirely walkable.
Walking in the city will make you have time to taste their amazing cheese, appreciate their beautiful tulips, relax and have coffee, and so much more.
Or if it intrigues you to visit the Red Light District, go with a 2-hour walk tour with a professional guide.
Taxi: Just like any other city, taxis can be quite more expensive compared to the other transportation available.
However, it is still the fastest way to get from point A to point B. Most especially when you’re in a rush or a tight schedule.
Moreover, taxis in Amsterdam can be either called through the taxi company or you can catch them at the taxi ranks around the city center.
For this reason, you cannot just hail and stop taxis on the street.
Boat: It would not be called Venice of the North without any reason.
Having more canals than there is in Venice, boating in Amsterdam is widely used and is served very well among tourists.
Furthermore, there are plenty of boats you can hire and use during your one week in Amsterdam. May it be for transportation or tours. Hire a boat and cruise on your own in the city canals.
Even more, you can click here to know more details on a 1.5-hour evening canal cruise.
4. What to see in Amsterdam – The Must-Do’s
What to see in Amsterdam? That’s a very good question!
More than a city of wonderful tulips and great cheese, there are far beyond what this city can offer. More than you can enjoy in your one week in Amsterdam.
Nevertheless, we have listed below all that you need to know. All to better give you a quick glimpse of the most essentials things to do in Venice of the North. However, some may require booking your tickets in advance.
The Must Do’s are:
- Enter its famous museums –
- Visit the Red Light District
- Have a Heineken experience
- Do a canal cruise
- Tour House of Bols
More great sights to see in Amsterdam are:
- Royal Palace Amsterdam
- Artis Amsterdam Zoo
- Nemo Science Museum
- Ripley’s believe it or not
- Albert Cuyp Market
- Body Worlds
- Eye Film Museum
5. Things to do in Amsterdam
From being home to many museums to being the famous city for legalizing, you surely won’t run out of things to do in your one week in Amsterdam.
Moreover, you can keep your itineraries busy with a list of things to do that we have prepared for you. All that you can enjoy and take advantage of during your tour.
Therefore, here are the lists of things to do for one week in Amsterdam.
We collected for you a great list of cool Things To Do in Amsterdam:
- 50 Best Things to Do in Amsterdam
- 36 Family-friendly things to do in the Venice of the North
- 56 Things to try in Amsterdam for FREE
Here are more ideas:
- Go clubbing
- Visit the Ice bar
- Tour the city with retired sex workers
- Experience a “backie” ride from a local
- Have a taste of their Dutch cheeses
- Stop and smell the flowers, literally
6. Tickets you have to buy before (Must Read)
I sincerely hope you are reading this section carefully! It will make a difference.
Above all, this is important so you actually can enter the places you would love to see from the inside.
Moreover, there are exactly two tickets you have to buy beforehand:
- Anne Frank House
- Van Gogh Museum
6.1 Anne Frank House
Due to its popular demand, tickets are always 2 months in advance for sale and sold out fast. Therefore, booking your tickets ahead of time will give you easy access to Anne Frank’s House.
Book your tickets on Anne Frank House’s official page here.
Please be advised that tickets can only be bought online on a specific schedule. There are no other ways to buy these tickets.
Important: You can only book the Anne Frank house on the official website!
Nevertheless, you can also join a walking tour that shares with the history of WWII. All through the eyes of Anne Frank. Listen to the stories from Anne Frank’s famous diary and other more on a 2-hour walking tour.
Tips on buying tickets online:
- Tickets are not sold at the door. Buy your tickets online – ONLY.
- Tickets are always likely to sell out. Book your tickets ahead of time.
- You can buy up to 14 online tickets at once.
6.2 Van Gogh Museum
Just like Anne Frank House, the Van Gogh Museum is also an in-demand tourist destination in Amsterdam.
However, you could wait for more than an hour to get to enter the museum. Only if you DO NOT book your tickets in advance.
We highly recommend booking ahead to save more of your time and to avoid the big crowds.
Moreover, admire more than 200 paintings, 500 drawings, and 750 letters from the Dutch master with your easy access tickets.
Good to know: There are no extra payments needed for all the temporary exhibits.
7. Food & Restaurants
When visiting a place especially for the first time, you definitely cannot miss out on tasting the city’s food. More than what your eyes can see, tasting Amsterdam’s food connects you more to its history.
Besides, not only do you satisfy your taste buds but you also satisfy your stomach with Amsterdam itself.
Furthermore, to better give you a good tasting tour on your one week in Amsterdam, we have made a list of things to do with regards to food.
Starting, certainly, you should not leave Amsterdam without having to try the 10 Must-Try Foods.
And if you’re looking where to get the best coffee experience, check out the 10 amazing coffee shops in Amsterdam.
However, if you’re already running late, catch a good brunch at these 12 restaurants.
A traveling couple? Here are 20 romantic restaurants in Amsterdam you choose from to have a sweet dinner.
Even more, you can join a Private Food Tour with a Local for 3 hours.
8. Day Trips from Amsterdam
Amsterdam having picturesque views of its canals, Instagrammable tulips all around, narrow townhouses, and home of many museums will truly invite a lot of tourists.
Moreover, with the list of things to do and places to visit we have discussed earlier, it would be easy to tell by now how your one week in Amsterdam itinerary is going to be.
Nonetheless, there is so much more you could still possibly include in your tour.
Below are day trips you could add on your itinerary to make the most out of your Amsterdam trip.
Day trips you could try in your one week in Amsterdam:
If you have seen the movie “In Bruges” that hit in 2008, then definitely you would want to visit the city.
Besides, you can catch Michelangelo’s ‘The Madonna of Bruges’ in the Church of Our Lady. An iconic item that has been preserved over the years.
Moreover, spend 12 hours of a guided day trip to Bruges, book here.
You can reach Brussels by train or drive from Amsterdam.
And of course, once you arrive, you should not miss visiting Atomium. The Royal Palace and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
Moreover, don’t forget to try its traditional waffles, chocolates, and beer. Find more details here.
8.3 Kinderdijk near Rotterdam
In Kinderdijk, you will find the UNESCO’s World Heritage windmill. The ones you see in picture postcards of the Netherlands with a thousan beautiful tulips. (Yeah, those windmills.)
These windmills are a must-visit when going to the Netherlands. So you know what to do.
Even more, we also have added guides you could find inspiration on while finalizing your itinerary.
Here are guides you can use in planning your day trips
Photo by Ellen26
9. Itinerary for 7 days
When spending a week in Amsterdam, you can explore the city itself and its surroundings.
Moreover, it amazes us how able are we to help other tourists like us have the most of their time in a place through our guides.