Western Canal Belt Walking Tour, Amsterdam

The Western Canal Belt is one of the most scenic parts of Amsterdam, it is where the web of historic canals is most tranquil. Various attractions are found here, from tiny shops and cafes to churches, museums and galleries. Take this tour and see the best sites of the Western Canal Belt.
You can follow this self-guided walking tour to explore the attractions listed below. How it works: download the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play to your mobile phone or tablet. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and its built-in GPS navigation functions guide you from one tour stop to next. The app works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Western Canal Belt Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Western Canal Belt Walking Tour
Guide Location: Netherlands » Amsterdam (See other walking tours in Amsterdam)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 13
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.9 km
Author: clare
Huis Marseille

1) Huis Marseille

One of the most stunning structures in Amsterdam decorated with breathtaking photography; the Huis Marseille offers its viewers a chance to encounter art within art. The first museum in Amsterdam dedicated to photography; Huis Marseille showcases contemporary as well as historical photographs.

Located on the Keizersgracht canal the Museum is located in an elegant 17th century merchant house. Dating back to 1665, the house was custom built by a wealthy French family. The building has an immaculate façade that makes the building stand out elegantly from its surrounding. However, it was not until 1993 that the house was purchased by the De Pont Modern Art Foundation and converted into a museum. Opened to the public in 1999, it has served as a platform not only for contemporary, upcoming and budding photographers but also old school, historical and famous photographers. The Huis Marseille is very popular for its temporary exhibits that are rotated every three months.

The museum is spread in six exhibits that help the viewer appreciate the world through the photographer and the camera’s eye. Today the museum not only boasts of a fantastic collection of stunning photography but also has provides as a photographic library. Inaugurated in 2003, the Huis Marseille museum has also a vast database of photographic information viewers can browse through. Open throughout the week except on Monday, the Huis Marseille is a must visit in Amsterdam.
Biblical Museum

2) Biblical Museum

Amsterdam is filled with sights that intrigue and connect to the past. Standing on the Herengracht Canal, the Biblical Museum immediately catches ones gaze with its timeless façade and obvious age. The Biblical Museum is one of the oldest museums in Netherlands.

The Museum was first commissioned by Dutch Merchant Jacob Cromhout in 1660. It was constructed by merging two patrician houses and was designed by architect Philips Vingboons. A total of two years were taken to complete the magnificent building and the end product was a breath taking Baroque design structure, with intricate stucco decoration, painted ceiling, elliptical staircase and a grand façade.

The Biblical Museum provides its viewers with century old miniature models of events and monuments that are religiously significant. Among the most popular are the models of the Temple of Solomon and Herod as they looked in first century Jerusalem, the Tabernacle and many more. The Museum also has paintings of famous events and Biblical scenes. Apart from the models and painting, some of the most sought after exhibits are artifacts that date back several centuries- clay tablets, manuscripts on papyrus and several archeological relics from Egypt can all be seen at the Biblical Museum.
Laura Dols

3) Laura Dols

Laura Dols is a typical Nine Street's shop that offers a variety of vintage chic clothes. Most clients who visit this shop are the Jordaan locals and tourists. A special interest for visitors are hand-embroidered traditional tablecloths and linens. Hours: Monday 13:00-18:00, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday 11:00-18:00, Thursday 11:00-21:00, Sunday 12:00-18:00.
De Negen Straatjes (The Nine Little Streets)

4) De Negen Straatjes (The Nine Little Streets)

Amid the canal district of Amsterdam lies the area known as Nine Little Streets. It consists of nine side streets of the Prinsengracht, Keizersgracht, Herengracht and Singel in central Amsterdam which have been promoting themselves with that name since the 1990s. Together they form a sub-neighborhood within the larger western Grachtengordel ("Canal Belt"), one with many small and diverse shops and restaurants. Dotted with designer boutiques (Antonia by Yvette, Donna Fiera, Sky Fashions), cozy cafés, vintage stores and specialty shops, the hand-laid brickwork lanes of the Nine Streets will see you stroll for hours.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Church of Our Lady

5) Church of Our Lady

Amsterdam has many beautiful churches like Westerkerk and Noorderkerk. The Onze Lieve Vrouwekerk more commonly known as the Church of Our Lady is one among them. Built in the 11th century, run by the Opus Dei, this is a Roman oratory church founded by Redemptorist Fathers and is situated in the St. Nicholas Parish. Hearing of confessions and choral liturgy is of major importance in this church.

If you want to experience the magic of Michelangelo’s work then a visit to this church is a must. There are plenty of his sculptures which are as alluring as the “Madonna and Child”. The beauty of the church is not limited to its huge brick tower; it extends to the interior of the church which has huge paintings and poignant carvings. The stained glass windows add to the beauty of this architectural marvel. Adjoined to this church is a museum, the Gruuthuse museum which is 122 meters high. This museum exhibits the church’s treasures and also has excavated tombs underneath which can be seen on payment of a small fee.

This church has services like Vigil Eucharist, Eucharist for the Italian and Surinam community, High Mass along with Latin hymns and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.
Theater Museum

6) Theater Museum

Theater Museum is part of the Dutch Theater Institute and is located in two monumental buildings at the Herengracht. Its objective is to make a significant contribution to the knowledge of the Dutch theater culture in the international context. The Museum exhibitions give visitors an insight into the development of theater in the Netherlands. Hours: Monday-Friday from 11.00 to 17.00, Saturday and Sunday from 13.00 to 17.00.
Westerkerk (West Church)

7) Westerkerk (West Church)

Located near Amsterdam’s Jordaan district, in Prinsengracht canal, is the highest church- The Westerkerk. The 85 meter high structure is one of the oldest churches in the city and its tower, topped with a blue, red and golden crown is symbolic of the imperial crown of Maximilian the First of Austria. Initially, this Church was built by the city architect Hendrick de Keyser but after his death in 1621, his son Pieter took over. Built for Protestant service, this church exhibits Dutch Renaissance style along with a hint of Gothic style.

Westerkerk is not just known for being the highest church but also for its historic importance. The Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn was buried in the northern part of the church in 1699, along with Hendrickje Stoffels, his lover and Titus, his son. Other painters like Nicolaes Berchem, Gillis d’Hondecoeter and Govert Flinck are also buried in the church premises. The frequently mentioned clock tower and the chimes of the church in Anne Frank’s diary refer to the Westerkerk since the Achterhuis (Anne Frank house) is located close to the church. Princess Beatrix (present Queen of The Netherlands) and Prince Claus were married in this Church.

The Westerkerk now plays an important role in the cultural and religious life of Amsterdam. It is famous for the annual Good Friday performance of Bach’s St. John Passion by the Choir of Westerkerk and the monthly cantatas are also well- known. The ecumenical nature of the Sunday service attracts many worshippers from not only Amsterdam but from all over.
Anne Frank House

8) Anne Frank House (must see)

The name Anne Frank must have rung a bell somewhere. Just to revive your memories, Anne Frank was a 13-year-old Jewish girl residing in the Netherlands with her family. Originally residents of Germany, after the Nazis gained power in Germany and life started getting difficult for the Jews, she and her family sought shelter in the Netherlands. However, little did the family know that soon the Nazi terror would come and haunt them even in their asylum.

The Anne Frank House on Prinsengracht Canal was where the Frank family along with the Van Pel family went into hiding for over 2 years. The house was built in 1635 and throughout its existence, it served as a residence, warehouse, stable and office. In 1940, Otto Frank, Anne’s father bought the premises as an office for his spice business. Soon the office became a hideout from the German troops who were rounding up Jewish families and sending them to concentration camps. The Anne Frank House is a haunting, tragic and overwhelming experience that gives you a glimpse of how the inmates tried to live their lives in the midst of horror.

Today the premise has become a museum, which gives the viewer a peek into the lives of those in hiding. A definite recommendation whether or not you’ve read the book.

Why You Should Visit:
The museum does a beautiful job of preserving Anne and her family's memory, while also teaching the atrocities of the Holocaust.

Make sure you book early; also, be aware that there are lots of stairs and no pictures allowed in the house as it is a memorial.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 9am-10pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
René Bruijstens Modern Art

9) René Bruijstens Modern Art

Specializing in modern mid-20th century and contemporary art, Rene Bruijstens Modern Art is located in the West Canal Ring district of Amsterdam. In its collection, you can find fine artworks by Karel Appel, George Braque, Raoul Dufy, Sonia Delaunay, etc. Every year, Rene Bruijstens Modern Art participates at the PAN Amsterdam Fair of Art, Antiques and Design.

Operation Hours Monday - Friday: 8:30 pm - 5:00 pm, or by appointment
Pancake Bakery

10) Pancake Bakery

The Pancake Bakery is housed in an old canal warehouse. The restaurant was established in 1973. It's famous for 'poffertjes' (tiny pancakes) and omelets prepared according to the in-house recipes. Don't lose your chance to try the most delicious and unusual pancakes in the city. Open daily from 12.00 to 21.30.
Nostalgia Antiques & Curiosa

11) Nostalgia Antiques & Curiosa

Located at Herenstraat in the West Canal Ring district of Amsterdam, Nostalgia Antiques & Curiosa offers antique furniture, metal art, glass and ceramics, all of which are from the Art Nouveau, Art Deco and Jugendstil periods. The antiques are mostly from Southern Europe and England, particularly from the 1880s to 1900s. The owner, Heleen den Ronden, started the business in 1990, before moving to the Herenstraat in 1998.

Operation Hours Monday: 11:00 am - 4:00 pm; Tuesday - Friday: 11:00 am - 6:00 pm; Saturday: 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Antiquariaat Lont

12) Antiquariaat Lont

Located at Herenstraat in Amsterdam's West Canal Ring district, Antiquariaat Lont is a bookstore that is filled with antique books, maps, prints and many more. Over here, you can find a wide collection of antique and rare books from the 1800s and 1900s.

Operation Hours Monday - Tuesday: 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm; Wednesday - Friday: 11:00 am - 6:00 pm; Saturday: 11:00 am - 5:00 pm

13) Haarlemmerstraat

Haarlemmerstraat is probably the youngest of the trendiest shopping streets in Amsterdam. It is the perfect place for those who seek to grab the latest and the cheapest.

Walking Tours in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Create Your Own Walk in Amsterdam

Create Your Own Walk in Amsterdam

Creating your own self-guided walk in Amsterdam is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Canal Belt Nightlife

Canal Belt Nightlife

A major cosmopolitan city with an absolutely electrifying nightlife scene, Amsterdam offers a variety of entertainment, from live music to underground house music, including ultra-chic to casual hangouts. Amsterdam is also home to variety of bars and clubs located inside historic buildings, allowing some of these former establishments to live on thematically, including the industrial chic of a former printing house, the heavenly theme of a converted church with large stained glass windows still intact, and more. Take this Nightlife Tour of Amsterdam's Canal Belt and discover what this great city is all about.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 km
Souvenir Shopping Part 1

Souvenir Shopping Part 1

It would be a pity to leave Amsterdam without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to Amsterdam, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 km
Old Center Museums Walk

Old Center Museums Walk

Amsterdam is home to more than 50 museums and galleries reflecting the city's cultural diversity and appealing to a wide range of visitors. This self-guided tour is the perfect opportunity to visit some of the most attractive museums located in Amsterdam's Old Center, such as the Maritime Museum and the NEMO science center.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 km
Old Side Walking Tour

Old Side Walking Tour

Amsterdam's Old Side or Oude Zijde in Dutch is a neighborhood of true contrast. On one side we have centuries old medieval buildings, churches and landmarks, and on the other hand we have the Red Light District, which is not in fact a district, but an area within the Oude Zijde of Amsterdam.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 km
Plantage Walking Tour

Plantage Walking Tour

Plantage is a neighborhood of Amsterdam, located in the Centrum district. It dates back to the 1600s and has been throughout the centuries a place of rest and entertainment. It is one of the greenest neighborhoods in Amsterdam, in part thanks to the fact that is home to the Hortus Botanicus, one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world, and the Artis Zoo.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.3 km
Souvenir Shopping Part 2

Souvenir Shopping Part 2

It would be a pity to leave Amsterdam without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to Amsterdam, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.4 km

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