Another itinerary is below! This time a 12 hour itinerary of Amsterdam. If you're ever in Europe and have two-three days to spend in another city, I highly suggest Amsterdam. Why? Amsterdam is the nicest, cleanest, happiest place on earth. I've never heard from anyone that has visited Amsterdam saying they had a horrible time. So for the nicest European visit, Amsterdam is the place to go.
8am Cook Breakfast at Zoku Hotel
During my most recent trip to Amsterdam I stayed at the Zoku Hotel in Amsterdam. This is by far the coolest hotel I've ever stayed at in Europe. The lofted bed, with the roll away staircase, made the room feel a lot bigger than just 350 square feet. Every furniture piece, and utensil all have a purpose. There are also multiple storage areas (closets, hanging space, desk, and counter space) to put all your things away in order to make it feel you're living in your own apartment in Amsterdam.
The hotel consists mainly of business travelers however, if you want to make your own meals (to save money), need amazing wifi, and want to stay at a unique hotel then Zoku Hotel is definitely where you should stay. The rooftop has an amazing roof deck, and a work area/hang out spot.
Check out my Amsterdam Video here
10am Lovers Canal Cruise
One hour, and 16 euros you'll go through all of Amsterdam's major canals and see sites that you may miss (if you only have 12 hours). I suggest doing the Lovers Canal Cruise tour in the morning, just in case you discover a site that you want to end up going to during the day. They also have other options of different cruises some that include drinks and/or dinner. Check out their website here.
12:00pm Lunch on Damrak Street
After the cruise, walk toward Damrak street to find a lunch spot along the canal. On the cruise they suggest trying Sea Palace, a giant Chinese restaurant on the water. I love Chinese food but didn't have the chance to go. Definitely check it out if you have a chance, the reviews look pretty good.
1:00pm Walk through the Flower Market
Walk through the flower market to find out what The Netherlands is known for, Tulips. The market sells specially marked tulips bulbs that you can bring back to the United States through customs. So make sure to grab the real thing, and plant them as soon as you get home.
2:00pm Shop at the Boutiques
There are multiple boutiques in Amsterdam where you can find original clothing items, and nothing like you see back in the United States. A little pricer than typical souvenirs but it will make sure that you’re not walking around with the same souvenir as every other American has been to Amsterdam. A great street with multiple boutiques is Utrechtsestraat street. My favorite boutique I discovered was We Are Labels. See the picture below of the sweater I purchased, clearly from Amsterdam. Now if only they shipped to the United States.
3:00pm Van Gogh Museum
This is by far my favorite museum in Amsterdam. Walking through the museum you won’t miss a single piece of art as the museum is built as an open floor plan. After the museum check out the Amsterdam sign for that tourist picture (however notice the crowd).
5:00pm Walk through the Red Light District
As it gets darker the Red Light District is in full swing. It may be intimidating at first but it’s a site you don’t want to miss. Note, you can not take pictures of the women in the windows. You will either be yelled at by them, or a big security guard will come your way demanding you to delete the photo.
7:00pm Catch the sunset at this spot
Want to know where? (and it's not on Google Maps). Look for my photo itinerary, which will be released later on this week.
8:00pm Cook back at the hotel
If you don't want to cook, walk down the east side of the canals back to the hotel. The reason I suggest cooking is not only to save money but also to enjoy the hotel room. So stop, chill, edit that picture for instagram and relax.
For those looking at coffee shop suggestions, I have a couple. Hunter’s Coffeeshop is by far the most relaxed coffee shop I've been too. Dark inside with tables placed along the walls, they offer a variety of options at good prices. Note that although weed is legal in Amsterdam, it’s only legal in the coffee shops. SO, don't be that tourist that walks down the street (smoking) because you think it’s “completely legal.” If you’re caught smoking in front of a police officer, you’ll find yourself receiving a ticket that you must pay before you leave The Netherlands. Play is safe and keep to the coffee shop. My other favorite places are The Original Dampkring, and Basjoe coffeeshop.
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