Amsterdam
In 3 days

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How to spend 3 days in Amsterdam

Canals, romantic bridges, bicycles, and narrow buildings are the postcard-perfect image of Amsterdam. The city center is relatively compact, and you can cover most of it on foot (or on a bike if you feel like going local). Follow our tips to make the most of your 3 days in Amsterdam.

Day 1: Check the “must-sees” off your bucket list

Morning

Head to Anne Frank House after breakfast. This is one of Amsterdam’s most popular sites, so remember to buy tickets in advance. Pre-bought tickets also come with a skip-the-line perk. Explore the rest of the Jordaan district on foot and head to one of the nearby restaurants for lunch. The cuisine here is as diverse as the neighborhood.

Afternoon

If you’re curious about this part of town, head to the Red Light District after lunch. It’s far less crowded at this time of day. Alternatively, if this area is not in your plans, opt for a guided walking tour of Amsterdam-Centrum.

Evening

End the day with a drink (alcoholic or not) and a light meal at one of the typical "brown cafés." With a casual environment, these cafes are typical hangouts for locals after work.

Day 2: The “Big Three” and Amsterdam’s cultural scene

Morning

You don't need to be an art expert to appreciate the Stedelijk Museum, the Rijksmuseum, and the Van Gogh Museum. They’re all within a short walking distance from one another. Save time with a city card that includes skip-the-line tickets for all museums.

Afternoon

Grab a snack and lunch at the Museumplein park, weather permitting. On cold and rainy days, pick one of the cafes around the park. Then hop on the tram to De Pjip, a well-known street art mural in the city. Or go on a guided tour of urban art.

Evening

Skip dinner and go on a guided food tour instead. In multicultural Amsterdam, you’ll find tours for all tastes and eating restrictions. Get your stomach ready, you're in for a culinary treat.

Day 3: Beyond Amsterdam-Centrum

Morning

Spend the morning ticking these three must-sees off your list: cheese, windmills, and wooden clogs. For optimal planning, we suggest you choose a guided tour that takes you to Edam or Zaanse Schans (or both).

Afternoon

Hop on the metro to Zuidoost for lunch at the World of Food. At this massive food court, you can taste mouthwatering cuisines from all over the world. Explore the rest of the neighborhood after your meal for a glimpse of a different Amsterdam. Must-visit spots include the OSCAM museum and the Brouwerij Kleiburg brewery.

Evening

Say farewell to Amsterdam’s canals on a boat tour. If you don’t feel like scouting for dinner places on your last day in the city, opt for a canal cruise offering food and drinks. Prefer to say goodbye to the city from the top instead? Cafés like Blue Amsterdam, SkyLounge, and Twenty Third Bar are famous for their panoramic views of Amsterdam.

What is the best way to get around in Amsterdam?

Public transportation in Amsterdam is an efficient and easy-to-use network of trams, buses, and subway. The Dutch city is currently going cashless when it comes to public transportation, so you must buy tickets with your credit or debit card. Buying a visitor’s travel card is a better option if you’re planning on using mostly public transportation. Choose one that includes the roundtrip between the airport and the city.

If you are used to riding a bicycle in an urban environment, this is the best way to get around in Amsterdam. You’ll find several options to rent a bike in the city. Alternatively, you can get a taste of Amsterdam’s cycling culture on a bicycle guided tour.

Good-to-know information and travel tips about Amsterdam

  • A lot of people in Amsterdam commute to work on a bike. They ride fast and often don't have time to swerve around someone standing on the bike lane. Pay attention to your surroundings and don’t walk on the bike paths.
  • Carry a light poncho or a small umbrella with you when traveling to Amsterdam in the winter.
  • Coffeeshops are, without a doubt, one of the top attractions in Amsterdam. Despite their laid-back environment and fame, they’re not places where visitors can turn a blind eye to local laws.
  • Some cafes and restaurants might not accept credit or debit cards, so bring cash. Tipping is appreciated but not mandatory.


Other Sightseeing Options in Amsterdam

Want to discover all there is to do in Amsterdam? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Amsterdam

This is a must if you are visiting Amsterdam and want to make the most of a short city break. The trip was amazing. It captured some of the key things to see and experience in the country side as well as the esence of the country, all topped up with an amazing driver and a funny and entertaining guide! Enjoyed every second of it and it was worth every cent we paid for the 5.5 hours.

Tour guides were the best. The drver was a funny guy and reallh entertained us. Excellent. I would do the tour again on my next trip to Amsterdam

Obwohl wir Pech mit dem Wetter hatten (starker Regen) war die Tour wirklich sehr schön und wissenswert. Ein Muss in Amsterdam!

Great organization, we managed to see a lot of beautiful typical things and landscapes!

Very nice tour to see and taste typically dutch things like cheese and stroopwaffels