Amsterdam city trip guide

Amsterdam is a great place to visit if you’re in Europe. I like to do my trip reports very late. It brings back sweet memories and I’m sure I will visit the city again cos I’m not done with it yet.

If you travel by plane, Schiphol airport will be the first sight you’ll see when you land. Schiphol has been voted the best airport in the world several times. Seriously, our KLIA beats the shit outta this airport sizewise but it’s clean and tidy. You can either take a taxi or fast train to Centraal Station. I took the fast train which is obviously fast and super smooth.

Centraal Station & Tram

Where to stay

It’s good to find a hotel/hostel/bed & breakfast somewhere near Centraal. You’ll save a lot of time and travelling because all the action is within walking distance. Not to mention the trouble of lugging your backpack around trying to find a place to crash. Book ahead on the Internet and make sure to get detailed directions on how to get there.

Getting around

When in Amsterdam, the best way to travel is by tram and foot (don’t be a fool and rent a car. Parking in the city is fuckin expensive). Get either the strippenkaart (for trams, buses and metro) or I amsterdam card (for trams, buses, metro and free entrance to tonnes of Museums) instead of paying per ride. Available in most tobacco shops, post offices, tourist offices or any railway ticket office.

I chose the strippenkaart because I’m not such a fan of museums. The most popular spots are just within 1-3 zones so you can reuse them within an hour if you’re quick with your visits. Most drivers are friendly with tourists and usually let you in without stamping your strippenkaart after their one hour validity period. There was a time when mine was 1.5 hours past it’s validity. You don’t have to get individual strips for each person and may share a strip with several friends as long you have enough empty strips. The fine for travelling without a valid stamp is EUR 60.00 so use your brains. If you’re using the “I amsterdam card”, you don’t have to worry about validity.

Another option is to rent a bicycle. Just be sure to rent it from a legal shop and not from a crack dealer. I have no experience cycling in Amsterdam so I’ll shut up about it. Frankly speaking, I see more bicycles here than in Shanghai or Beijing.


Be careful while crossing the road when you see tram rails and bicycle lanes marked by yellow lines. Don’t stand in their way when you’re looking at maps. Make sure to look both sides twice (4 to 8 times depending on how stoned you are) before crossing. Being slammed by a tram is not a funny thing. Bicycles are kings of their lane there so don’t get mad when a cyclist gets cross at you for being in their way.

What do eat

Whatever you do, if you stumble around Chinatown and see a Chinese restaurant called Nam Kee, do not be tempted. Their rice is hard as rock and their food tastes bland. Go for their local food. Try the Dutch pancakes.

This is something you should not miss. Febo is Dutch’s alternative to McDonalds. It’s really good. All fried stuff you can eat in little vending machine slots. Just drop €1.20 in and pop the lid open. The primary automat vended items are hot krokets, bami, sausages, pre-made burgers, and a variety of sandwiches. Mmmmmm yummy!

What to do

The Heineken Experience

I listed this first because I missed it. It’s closed on Mondays so plan your trip properly. Word has it that you get insane amounts of beer (when I was there in February) and the factory tour. Must visit!

Albert Cuyp Market

Pipes in a headshop
Six Shot pipe
This is one of the busiest outdoor market in Amsterdam. One one side, you’ll see flowers of every colour including black and silver. On the other side, there are quaint souvenirs, pussies and headshops.

Van Gogh Museum

It gets boring after a while if you’re not an art fan. I think I can paint far better with my foot. You can see all his paintings when he’s in different moods. Most of them look like crap anyway.

Rembrandt House Museum

Now this guy is more an artist to me. His works are very detailed and very talented on different medias. This place shows his house exactly as it is when he lived in it. I loved his collection of different artifacts all around the world.

Canal Rides

We did it during nighttime thinking that it’ll be lovely to see Amsterdam at night. Boy was I wrong! We fell asleep a few times wishing the ride would end soon. Best to do it during daytime although guides recommend that you do it nighttime. Romantic my ass! I might be wrong if it’s Summertime.

Dam Square

Grim reaper ripping money off people
Watch pigeons and the grim reaper ripp people’s money for taking photos with him.

Madame Tussauds

Middle finger up Bush's nose
Located just on Dam Square, this famous wax museum is your best alternative to London’s. Where else can you stick your middle finger up Bush’s nose?

Sex Museum

A dick bigger than any dickhead
Watch the progress of sex through time. Even if you’re the biggest dickhead around, there’s one bigger than you (no offense Len, I don’t mean you).

Red Light District

The infamous Red Light District springs into action as night falls. We went for a live sex show and boy was it crap (what’s crappier is when you’re dumb enough to pay for a video show). The bouncer cum salesperson tries to sell you entrance to their sex shows. You get to watch 6 shows and stay as long as you want. Sounds like a steal?

This is where we went for the live sex shows
© Pictures of Amsterdam courtesy of
I initially thought we would get to see 6 simultaneous shows on six rooms or stages. Instead there was only 1 stage with 6 repeating shows lasting about 10 minutes each. You don’t even get to see them ejaculate! But to think about it, the performers will run out of cum very fast if they work an 8 hour shift and cum every performance. You’ll know it’s time to leave when you see Batman perform again :P

Red Light District windows
© Pictures of Amsterdam courtesy of
All long the area, there are rows of see through windows filled with slim and sexy prostitutes. There’s even an area filled with fat, old and ugly ones. Be sure not to shoot any photos of them or you’ll quickly end up in a lot of trouble. I’m not kidding here!

Green Light District

Cannabis Garden
Located along the Red Light District is what they’re trying to turn into the Green Light District. Be sure to visit the Cannabis College and The Hash Marijuana Hemp Museum.

The Cannabis College is operated by the owners of The FlyingDutchmen and entrance is free. It’s aimed to educate the public about cannabis use and it’s medicinal properties. Even if you’re blind, you won’t miss the smell when you’re nearby.

Coffee Shops

All coffee shops in Amsterdam do not sell alcohol but marijuana and hash. You’ll be presented with a menu of different types of cannabis and hash. You are allowed to bring your own weed and smoke there as long as you order a drink. Stick to weed. Buying hash gets you almost nowhere. At least for me. All of them play good music for you to chill. Normal non weed selling shops are labeled “Cafe”. If it’s labeled “Coffee Shop”, you can be sure they sell weed.

Me near the Red Light District beside Grasshopper Coffee Shop
I got a recommendation from a local who came out of nowhere when we were looking for Amnesia. He told me that all the locals go to SpeakEasy and they sell all types weed at the same price plus you get a little bit more depending on how much you buy (different types of weed costs different elsewhere). It’s really a small place but business is very brisk. You can see a lot of locals doing takeaways there. Go for the strongest “White Widow” type. Thanks for the tip “outta nowhere guy” :)

More reports when I visit again …

Tags : Amsterdam, Europe, travel, food, photos, Schiphol airport, tram, train, bicycle, strippenkaart, museums, food, Febo, Heineken, Albert Cuyp Market, Van Gogh, Rembrandt, Canal Rides, Dam Square, Madame Tussauds, Sex Museum, Red Light District, live sex shows, Green Light District, marijuana, hemp, hash, coffee shop, weed

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18 Comments so far

  1. vinzanity on June 25th, 2006

    Woot! An awsome trip ! So many things to see, so much to do. . minus the weed session. . eehheemmm..

  2. The Hive Mind on June 25th, 2006

    This was a funny post! If I ever (I hope) get to Europe, I would like to visit Amsterdam one day. I’ve actually grown use to public transportation when I’m visiting different places. It is stupid and wasteful to rent a car when buying a transportation pass is so much better.

  3. toxicle on June 25th, 2006

    Yes I think the best way to see a city is by public transport. Experience what the locals are doing.

    Just like when I was in London. I got a map from The Original London Sightseeing Tour, which shows all the famous tourist spots including the nearest tube stations. I took the tube instead with the Oyster card. Paid only £3.50 instead of £16.50 per day :)

    I did the exact same thing while in Barcelona. Their metro system is excellent. Timing is accurate to the second.

  4. Joel What on June 26th, 2006

    Very informative. I hope to visit Amsterdam in the near future. I hope you don’t mind me asking but how much money did you spend on your trip (including plane tickets) and how long were you there for?

  5. toxicle on June 27th, 2006

    I was touring Europe and spent 3 nights in Amsterdam. I can’t remember how much I spent but €30-50 per person a day should be enough to cover your travelling and food expenses. You can look up your accommodation on the Internet according to your budget.

    I got pretty cheap flights from easyJet. You can also try Ryanair but I don’t think they fly to Amsterdam. It cost me only £12.99 and £9.99 (without airport tax) to and back to London. You can even get free flights at times. If you see a free or cheap flight available, make your decision and get it now. It’ll be gone when you come back tomorrow. Always use the Internet and plan your trip way ahead of travel time and you’ll safe loads.

  6. Joel What on June 27th, 2006

    Thanks for the help. :)

  7. on June 28th, 2006

    Just wondering, with the easy prostitution and all, are there a lot of STD’s there?

  8. toxicle on June 28th, 2006

    I have no idea but like all countries with legal prostitutes, they have regular health checks.

  9. jasty on July 17th, 2006

    You can have map in to Ipod

  10. ??? on May 8th, 2007

    i think that weed should be legal everywere???????????????????????????????????????????

  11. adam on June 29th, 2007

    legaliiizee eeet!

  12. toxicle on June 29th, 2007

    aight :)

  13. Bosantara on July 3rd, 2007

    Hi, I will be visiting amsterdam this July 2007…i have read thru strippenkaart & I have no idea how it works..the difference in zones etc..could u share some info with me?? forget abt looking thru its website, i still dun understand.

  14. toxicle on July 4th, 2007

    Bosantara: It’s exactly like how I described it. Don’t worry just get a strip and get yourself into the tram. Pass the strip to the driver and he will validate it. It’s just like a coupon. If you travel 1-2 zones, he will punch 2 parts and that’s it.

  15. rockk on July 12th, 2007

    looks great…..I have taken a similar picture! we should have those kind back home, whts the big deal right?

    a trip to an island called volendam is fantastic, a place where you don’t want to miss out

  16. bluntman on July 17th, 2007

    Im going to be staying for 6 days in the city, closer to the airport. Im planning on bringing $100 US for each day (total 12, 6 in Berlin), is that going to be enough? A few days out of the trip im planning to use the day to just explore the area for a while and visit neighboring cities.

    Thanks for the info!

  17. r_skb on July 21st, 2007
  18. Jo on December 5th, 2007

    Amsterdam ooo amsterdam….can you say more than ‘WATCH OUT!!!’ that would be either for a bike, the tram or a crazy tourist who doesn’t know how to ride a bike(they’re the red ones)… That place has more character than the rest of the world and then some. Advice to the world…explore amsterdam!! After a month you kind of get addicted…

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