Amsterdam - On the Verge of change?
The smoking ban heralds a new era for Amsterdam - once
the world’s stag night capital Now trend-watchers say it
won’t be long before the Dutch city is more famous for it's
haute couture than for hash culture.
Change is on the verge in Amsterdam. Instead of hen nights and stag nights, gangs of groups heading for seedy sex shops in the red-light area, via Ferries. A sophisticated new breed of tourist is hitting the more glamorous parts of this Dutch city known as Amsterdam.
A smoking ban came into force force a week ago, all part of the reinvention of this popular captivating city. Thos that want to get stoned still can in one of the many hash-peddling coffee shops, but those who don’t are very excited about everything else Amsterdam has to offer; especialy with it's ease of transportation with very regular Ferry networks.
Thanks to its increasingly high profile fashion week running from July 19-28, fashionistas have been flooding to the city to check out its many cool boutiques.
As well as big department stores like
Bijenkorl that sell the usual fashion and beauty super-brands, check out independent shops like Panc Vergouw which has individual
but totally wearable tops and skirts, and Lady Day in the fashionable De 9 Straatjes (The Nine Streets) — a well-stocked vintage haven. British high street favourites like River Island and H&M are prolific, but save your pennies as they’re about 15 per cent more expensive than in the UK. Instead, hit the home-grown Dutch store Vero Moda for high street styles — it’s perfect for cheap but funky fashion.
Bargain hunters should visit the markets too. The Albert Cuypmarkt in the nearby De Pijp district is the biggest and the best, selling cheap but good-quality clothes, food and flowers. For something more unusual, try the picturesque Bloemenmarkt — a flower market inside floating barges.
So Now you've done your Shopping..
It’s difficult to walk anywhere in Amsterdam without stumbling across an intimate Italian eaterie, a lively Mexican café, or one of the many authentic Indonesian restaurants.
Eating out isn’t cheap though (roughly on a par with London prices) but the many pasta or noodle cafés tend to offer a tasty,
The city is also a pioneer of classy restaurants-cum-entertainment venues. Pasta E Basta (Nieuwe Spielelstraat 8) serves up its antipasti buffet in a table made from a converted grand piano. At Supperclub (Jonge Roelensteeg 21) you can enjoy a five-course meal for €65 (£51). Diners relax on huge white sofas, then enjoy a massage between courses while DJs and singers
provide the evening’s entertainment.
Hot on the heels of the city’s fashion boutiques are its stylish boutique hotels. For the best views of the city, stay in a canal-side hotel. They’re also the most accessible forshopping and sightseeing. Try The Toren for sophisticated but cosy rooms and the perfect post-shopping bar.
Start your day with a bagel tapas at a branch of the Dutch food chain Bagel & Beans, before spending the morning on a canal boat or soaking up one of the many art exhibitions.
No trip to the Dutch capital is complete without a visit to Anne
Frank’s house, or you can chart the history
of the smoking culture in Amsterdam at the Hash Marijuana &
Then, if you really must try one of the city’s coffee shops, the smoky atmosphere that engulfs you will help you relax
and unwind — even if you don’t indulge.
Ferry Services to Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the hub of Holland, it's the fifth most visited tourist destination in the whole of Europe, visited by millions of people each year, hundreds of thousands of which travel from the UK via ferry Newcastle and Hull ferry ports.
If its a glance into another culture from a different country that your looking for, then theres no better place to start than Amsterdam, Holland.
Get the full experience and start your holiday or break the moment you set foot onto the ferry. For further information and best prices on ferry crossings to Amsterdam click the links to the right.
Why ferry to Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the most easy going and friendliest city you will find in Europe. Holland itself is known for its windmills and tulips, but to put a finer point on it, Amsterdam has elegant canals and townhouses.
Most people go to Amsterdam for the laid back lifestyle and famous cafe culture. Its often overlooked that Amsterdam is a great cycling city, unlike most cities in the UK, Amsterdam is bicycle friendly and there are some delightful sites to be seen when either strolling along or better still cycling your way around Holland. With this in mind the ferry is an ideal option for cyclists as they can take their bicycle on board, unlike aircraft, and as soon as you dock at the Holland ferry port, away you go.
Amsterdam Tourist Attractions
Many passengers traveling by ferry are attracted to Amsterdam because of its liberal approach to city life. Amsterdam has a relaxed charm and elegance about it.
If you have a natural interest in the history of Holland then there are various museums you can visit in Amsterdam. The museum names include Rijksmuseum, the Stedelijk Museum, the Rembrandt House Museum, and the Van Gogh Museum, which has the biggest collection of Van Gogh's paintings in the world. Also the 'Anne Frank House' is a museum dedicated to her story and frequently visited by ferry passengers.
If museum visiting isn't your scene then the de Wellen, also known as Walletjes or Rosse Buurt, contains the red light district and many cultured coffee shops which may be more suited to your scene. The red light district is located in the centre of Amsterdam and can easily be found.
Ferry and Cycling the way to Amsterdam
As previously mentioned Amsterdam is a very cycling friendly City, and not much of an exaggeration to say probably even one of the most cycling friendly cities in the world. When taking a ferry to Amsterdam being a cyclist you can completely cut out any traffic and make you free as a bird, taking on the elements and being in charge of your own destiny.
Once you have got off the ferry and arrived in Amsterdam you will find yourself amongst the estimated one million fellow cyclists, please note cycle theft is quite common in Amsterdam so always make sure you lock your bike up safely when unattended.
Trams and bus routes mainly make up the public transport in Amsterdam. These are mainly operated by Gemeentelijk Vervoerbedrijf, Connexxion and Arriva.
Three free ferries carry pedestrians and cyclists across the IJ to Amsterdam-Noord, and two fare charging ferries go east and west along the harbour.
Newcastle to Amsterdam info |
Taking Pets to Amsterdam |
Coffee Shops |
Useful Holland Contacts |
Business Hours |
Ferry Services to Calais |
Ferry Service operators |
Ferry Services to Rotterdam |
Ferry Services to Jersey |
Holland holidays |