At Milk & Sugar, we all like some big city air from time to time – a lot of big city air, actually! I guess you already figured that out.

Joyce and I had some spare time during the long Pentecost weekend, so we took off to Amsterdam, just to spend some time in the big city and wander around.

When going to Amsterdam, everyone goes to the Anne Frank House, van Gogh Museum,  Red Light District, or takes a Canal tour. You should do that your first time in Amsterdam – it’s what Amsterdam is about (we did it too, our first visit!). But to truly get the “Amsterdam feeling” you should really take your time (it’s a really easygoing city to visit, so just go back a second, third, … time) and enjoy the unique vibrancy of Amsterdam.

 

These are our tips & tricks for wandering around, catching some big city air, and really enjoying the city.

1.  Easygoing parking spot

Parking can be expensive within Amsterdam city. As it was only a day trip, we didn’t want to lose a lot of time on transport and finding parking space. We took the Oosterdokparking, entering via Piet Heinkade. You pay a fixed price of €10 a day and you can park just 100 meters from the central train station. Easy!

Oosterdoksstraat 150 – 1011 DK Amsterdam

2. Rent a bike to discover the city

There are literally hundreds of thousands of bikes on the roads. Biking is hot in Amsterdam, and really easy to do! We rented our bikes from the popular Mac Bike. They have a few locations throughout the city, so just locate the one that’s closest to where you are staying and off you go. Just hit the road!

3. Pllek @ Amsterdam Noord

Joyce already wrote a blog about Pllek a few days ago. When the sun comes out, Pllek is the place to be! Check out her blog for a review!

4. Negen straatjes

For some charming shopping you have to head off to Amsterdam’s Nine Streets. Nestled in the canal belt, you can find all kind of specialist shops, independent boutiques, vintage and  flagship stores. We spent all afternoon in the “Negen Straatjes”!

Don’t miss ‘Rum‘ for some really nice basic scandinavian fashion, the cornerstore from Supertrash, and Superga for an overload of sneaker choices.

5. Ron Gastrobar

When you really want to make your dinner ‘a night out’ with lovely food, great wine and excellent service you should consider Ron Gastrobar in Amsterdam South – the concept from the hands of famous chef Ron Blauuw. You can order smaller dishes from €15 each. It’s really nice to try different dishes from the menu and you can also share if you can’t make up your mind or if you are in a romantic mood! Ron Gatrobar has one Michelinstar.

RON Gastrobar  – Sophialaan 55 hs 
1075 BP Amsterdam 
+31 (0)20 49 61 943 

6. Foodhallen

Are you a real foodie? Then you will just love the Foodhallen in Amsterdam West!

It’s an indoor foodmarket. New York has Chelsea Market and in London you go to Borough Market. Recently, Amsterdam opened ‘de Foodhallen’. Local food entrepenuers have a stall and sell their unique dishes while sharing their passion for food with you. Yum! It also must be said: ‘De Hallen’ is a beautiful building, so it’s also a really nice setting for wandering around, enjoying the delicious smells and unique setting.

Foodhallen – Bellamyplein51 – Amsterdam

7. The taste of north with the ferry

When you want to get to Plekk (check Tip 3), you have to take the free ferry to cross the canal to Amsterdam Noord. Dutch people call it ’t Pontje’. Even if you don’t want to go to Pllek, you should take ‘t Pontje. Just because it’s fun. And because in Amsterdam Noord the NDSM Wharf and surrounding area is really worthwhile visiting (it’s especially nice for biking, if you have the time!). You really can feel the vibrant energetic atmosphere! You can get on the ferry at the back of Central station.

We just can’t get enough of pretty pretty Amsterdam! Hope you’ll enjoy it too!