Planning Your Trip to Amsterdam

If you’ve found your way to this website, you might live in the Netherlands – or you might be planning a weekend trip or a short break in Amsterdam. Before you’re ready to check out all my recommendations for the fantastic restaurants in Amsterdam, you’re going to need to get here! So I’ve put together this short travel guide with practical information and tips to help you.

Amsterdam travel: by air

Schiphol airport is a huge hub, which means that most national carriers and budget airlines fly direct to Amsterdam. For obvious reasons, Dutch national airline KLM offers the most flights in and out of the capital, while Transavia now offers flights in and out of Amsterdam, Eindhoven and Rotterdam airports. You can compare prices among all airlines on sites like Skyscanner, Expedia and GoEuro.

Amsterdam travel: by train and bus

If you’re already in northern Europe, Amsterdam is easy to reach by train and bus. There are regular trains from Paris and Brussels on the Thalys, while FlixBus has bus routes to the Netherlands from neighbouring Belgium and Germany. GoEuro can help you find the best route and means of transport.

Also looking for food recommendations in Amsterdam? Download my Amsterdam Restaurant Guide:

Public transport: Amsterdam trams and buses

While bike rental and car rental are possible, I wouldn’t advise either of them for getting around Amsterdam during a short stay. Many roads are pedestrian-only, and the bike lanes can be a little terrifying until you’ve had a lot of practice on them. Better to walk (it’s a compact city) or to make use of Amsterdam’s excellent public transport network of trams, buses and trains. Plan your journey via the GVB website.

Places to stay in Amsterdam: hotels from budget to blow-out

For canal-side luxury, you can’t beat the iconic Pulitzer Hotel. For a budget hotel that has great amenities, book into The Social Hub (with two locations). For something quirky and unique, Hotel Not Hotel is the place to rest your head. And for excellent hotel bars and restaurants, try the laidback Hoxton or the trendy Kimpton de Witt.

Amsterdam tours: food tours and boat tours

It might feel like a tourist cliché, but taking a tour really is a great way to get your bearings. I love the food tours by Eating Amsterdam and Devour Tours (full disclosure: they’re both clients of mine). And a boat tour of Amsterdam’s canals is a must while you’re in the city – I like the Lovers canal tour. But you can obviously find plenty of other options on TripAdvisor, Viator and Tours & Tickets.

Amsterdam sightseeing: places to see, things to do

I use the Iamsterdam website to find out about things to do in Amsterdam (especially upcoming exhibitions). If you prefer to go old-school and buy a guidebook, I’ve contributed food & drink chapters to the Michelin Must See Guide, DK Eyewitness Travel Guide and Rough Guide, so I know they’re compiled by local writers.


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