25 Amsterdam Facts Every Tourist Should Know

Posted by , Updated on September 13, 2022

Are you planning to go to Amsterdam anytime soon? If you are then you probably will want to know some things before you board your plane. You may want to know some hotels to stay at, or where you can get the best food.

The Dutch are very nice people, and Amsterdam is rich with culture, great food, and beautiful scenery. For people who like to partake in recreational marijuana smoking, Amsterdam is the place to be. There are plenty of cafés where you can find a selection of cannabis.

So, pack your bags, hop on that plane, and read all about the 25 Amsterdam Facts Every Tourist Should Know!


The Origins of the city


Amsterdam actually originated as a small fishing village and was discovered in the 13th century. The city has obviously grown since then and has become one of the most popular places in Europe.


The Great Big Fire


Amsterdam fell victim to a huge fire in 1421 and another one about thirty years later.  The horrifying fire burnt down more than half of the city.


The Summer Olympics


In 1928, the Summer Olympics took place in Amsterdam. It was the first time the ceremonial flame was ignited, a tradition that continues to this day.


City Size


Amsterdam is a small city. If you’re staying in Central Amsterdam, you can walk from the train station to your hotel. It’s also quite common to get to where you’re going, by either walking, bicycle, or taking a boat.


Hostels are available


Amsterdam is an expensive city. However don’t panic there are plenty of hostels you can stay at which are reasonably priced. You might meet some other tourists that you can walk around the city with.


You can tour on a bicycle


If you get a chance take a tour of Amsterdam on a bicycle. The city is known to be very bike friendly. They even have bicycle traffic lights.


You can ride a tandem bike


A tandem bike is a bike built for two. You can get one of these if you’re a couple or two travel companions who want to bike ride together.


You can eat delicious Dutch pancakes.


Amsterdam is known for many things including tasty cuisine. The Dutch pancake is known to be quite delicious and the best place to get them is at “The Pancake Bakery”.


The neighborhoods are definitley worth seeing


There is plenty to see in Amsterdam. The neighborhoods are very beautiful. In particular, there is the Jordaan, which has beautiful old buildings near a peaceful canal. Don’t forget to get a hot drink at one of the many cafes.


You can smoke a joint with your coffee


Marijuana has been legal for quite some time in Amsterdam. The places to go and enjoy your cannabis are called “cafes.” So, grab a seat, relax, and light up. You can even go to places and get marijuana baked goods.


There are tours of Anne Frank's house


Most people know the tragic story of Anne Frank and her famous diary. If you want to visit the house she grew up in, you can do so in Amsterdam. They have tours which cost over 14 guilders for adults and about 10 guilders for children.


The Euro is the form of currency used


The Dutch, like most European countries, uses the euro currency for money. However, it wasn’t that long ago that most of The Netherlands were using Dutch guilders, or florins. In some parts of The Netherlands, they still are.


Don't wear wooden clogs


A huge stereotype for the Dutch is that everyone walks around in wooden clogs. Wooden clogs are not fashioned sensible and people will tell you they are quite uncomfortable.


You can visit the Red Light District


The Red Light District is one of the oldest attractions in Amsterdam. If you’re looking for a “companion” for an hour or few, then go window shopping and get yourself one. Just don’t photograph the ladies. They don’t like it and will retaliate in unsanitary ways.


You can stay on a houseboat


For over a century, the canals in Amsterdam have housed 2500 houseboats. They even have houseboat hotels. We imagine it’s less crowded than a regular cruise.


There are 165 Canals


The canals in Amsterdam are beautiful. They run for 60 miles. People can walk along them, or take a nice relaxing boat ride. You may just want to sit down on the pier and watch the boats.


The name "Amsterdam" comes from two words


Here’s a little interesting fact for you. The name Amsterdam is a combination of the river “Amsel” and the dam built to set up the city.


The Warm Months


Do you want to experience Amsterdam during the warm climate? Then your best off going between June and August. Although the weather is relatively calm during the winter, it can at times get pretty chilly.


Amsterdam has very safe drinking water

drinking waterhttp://sustainableamsterdam.com/2015/02/amsterdam-tapwater/

Tap water has a bad rep, but if you’re feeling parched, then go ahead and drink the tap water. Amsterdam has the best water in The Netherlands.


The tipping "non" rule


Like a lot of European cities, tipping is not expected. It’s definitely appreciated by the workers though. The taxes are even included in the price of the meal.


Locals will give you a "backie."


Another fun way to hitch a ride is to spot a cyclist with a yellow luggage rack, and shout “backie.” They will let you get on the back of their bike and take you to where you want to go. Just make sure they’re heading in the direction you are.


Stay in a 3-D printed house


This one we feel is pretty self-explanatory. Amsterdam backed funding for a 3-D printed house that locals and tourists can stay in during their visit.


You can tour the city with retired sex workers


Retired sex workers and sisters Martine and Louise Fokken will take visitors on a tour of the city and share stories of their experience in the sex trade.


There's a houseboat for cats


It’s a well-known fact that cats don’t like water. The felines of Amsterdam don’t have to fret though. They can cruise the canal in comfort on the “Cat-Boat.”


The First Stock Exchange


Amsterdam created the first stock exchange. The exchange was founded by the Dutch East India Company in 1602. There have been changes to the way the stock market is run today.

Photo: 1. Claes Jansz. Visscher, Engraving depicting the Amsterdam Stock Exchange, built by Hendrik de Keyser c. 1612, marked as public domain, more details on Wikimedia Commons , 2. pixabay.com (Public Domain), 3. www.memes.com (Fair Use: Illustrative Purposes Only), 4. www.flickr.com, CC BY 2.0, 5. www.wordpress.com (Fair Use: Illustrative Purposes Only), 6. www.blog.opentable.com (Fair Use: Illustrative Purposes Only), 7. www.pixabay.com (Public Domain), 8. flickr.com, CC BY 2.0, 9. Cornelis Anthonisz. creator QS:P170,Q2761474, Cornelis anthonisz vogelvluchtkaart amsterdam, marked as public domain, more details on Wikimedia Commons , 10. www.publicdomainpictures.net (Public Domain), 11. pixabay.com (Public Domain), 12. Michal Osmenda from Brussels, Belgium, Erotic Museum in Red Lights District in Amsterdam (3931245180), CC BY-SA 2.0 , 13. Berkh, Dutchclogs, CC BY-SA 3.0 , 14. www.flickr.com, CC BY-SA 2.0, 15. www.publicdomainpictures.net (Public Domain), 16. www.pixabay.com (Public Domain), 17. Jvhertum, Eerste Leliedwarsstraat, marked as public domain, more details on Wikimedia Commons, 18. Takeaway, 2015 01 Spekpannenkoek, CC BY-SA 4.0, 19. pixabay.com (Public Domain), 20. pixabay.com (Public Domain), 21. www.hostelworld.com (Fair Use: Illustrative Purposes Only), 22. www.wordpress.com (Fair Use: Illustrative Purposes Only), 23. www.pintrest.com (Fair Use: Illustrative Purposes Only), 24. www.amazon.com (Fair Use: Illustrative Purposes Only), 25. Gerrit Adriaenszoon Berckheyde creator QS:P170,Q576025, AmsterdamDamsquar, marked as public domain, more details on Wikimedia Commons

SEE ALSO: 25 Top Selling Music Artists Of All Time »

NOW WATCH: 25 Best Netflix Original Movies

Subscribe to List25
Show Us Your Love
Join Over 2 Million+ List25 Fans