A lively, canal-side capital
Amsterdam is a colourful city that can be enjoyed by day and night. Waterways, bridges and harbours plus a wide choice of cafes, museums and nightlife make it a perfect holiday location at any time of year.
Best time to travel, attractions and tips
Winters in Amsterdam can be cold, summers are hot and in spring the tulips boom. There are many holidays and festivals that are fun to visit. The 27th April is Koningsdag, King Willem Alexander's Birthday. The whole country celebrates with street parties and music in parks and public squares. There is a large open air market with attractions for everyone. This is held one day earlier if 27th April is a Sunday. Bevrijdingsdag is always on the 5th May,it celebrates the end of the occupation by Nazi Germany.
Important information before travel
Before taking a taxi from the airport to Amsterdam central, check the cost of the trip with the driver. By doing this unexpected high costs will be avoided. Many cafes and restaurants serve delicious food from former Dutch colonies: Indonesia, Surinam and NL Antilles. Behind the main station there is a free ferry "het pontje" that crosses the IJ to NDSM, a former wharf that is now a cultural centre. Amsterdam has a high cost of living, but prices in restaurants away from the tourist centres can be cheaper than the UK. The Amsterdam time zone is GMT +1; DST +1
Local information: arrival, accommodation and transport
Travel from Amsterdam airport to the city centre is straightforward. The Airport railway station has trains that run directly to central Amsterdam the journey time is 15 minutes. This train journey costs roughly 4 EUR. Bus number 197 runs from/to Leidseplein in central Amsterdam. The travel time is 35 mins. A taxi fom the airport to the city centre costs approximately 50 EUR. Large starred hotels in tourist centres are expensive but there are cheap hostels from 20 EUR per night; and hotels from 45 EUR a night. Amsterdam is easily accessed on foot. Public transport is efficient. Amsterdam taxis are expensive costing about 15-20 EUR.A public transport 24 hour day ticket provides a good option for getting around the city. It costs about 8 EUR and 3 EUR for children age 4-11. Single tickets are available on trams.