Where To Stay in Amsterdam, Netherlands - Guide of Best Areas and Hotels

Amsterdam, the city once grown around the dam in the Amstel river, is now famous for its preserved fairytale beauty alongside with “less” conservative views on things prohibited in most world countries. Amsterdam has historically been an important commercial spot, continuously flourishing due to exceptional trading and financial management. Besides, the skill to use and promote certain rarely available but desired things has significantly assisted to the city’s development.

Called by some locals ‘a village’, Amsterdam ([ˈæmstərdæm], Dutch: [,ʌmstərˈdʌm]) is beautifully sewn with a necklace of channels and decorated with nice houses resembling tastefully colored and combined beads. After World War II, however, the city center has suffered due to a badly managed city reconstruction project, and renewal works are still on in some of the central or adjacent areas. Most probably, though, you won’t even notice them during your visit.

Among these colorful buildings, you can find plenty of accommodation options. Beware, though, that Amsterdam is a relatively expensive European capital, and “affordable” has a totally different meaning here. No matter what type of rental you are looking for, visiting this city will be worth the price.

Note: Typical buildings in Amsterdam have just a few floors, and no elevators. Besides, many rentals offer two story rooms, and often bathrooms and bedrooms might be on different floors. If you have any difficulties with walking or stairs, make sure the accommodation you choose suits your needs best.

Table of Content


Part 1. A quick glance at Amsterdam’s recommended neighbourhoods

Centrum – convenient but touristy neighbourhood, offering proximity to everything you might need and rentals for any budget

Grachtengordel (Canal Ring) – authentic and diverse district, will satisfy many a travelers interests from both entertainment and accommodation points of view

De Wallen (Red Light District) – the most bustling and controversial area, with varied quality- and price-wise rentals

Jordaan – traditional and fanciful district, presenting a lot of stuff to do to its guests but few accommodation options

Museumkwartier (Museum Quarter) – mannered and commercial neighbourhood, with museums and outlets galore to flutter from one to another, and an adequate rentals supply

De Pijp – original and dynamic district, with many varied catering and entertainment options but few rentals on the market, good for family vacations

Plantage & Oost – universal and fun neighbourhood, it is family-friendly and provides many fun and accommodation opportunities for any traveler

Oostelijk Havengebied (Eastern Docklands) – progressive yet charming area, is ideal for a romantic or family stay, with quite expensive rentals


Part 2. Recommended neighbourhoods and hotels to stay in Amsterdam

Centrum

Pronounced: [‘sɪntrum]

- Overview

Amsterdam’s Centrum is the city’s historic center. Although there are not too many things to do and see here, the location is perfect keeping you close to the most interesting and alluring landmarks and areas. Surprisingly, it’s the neighbourhood where you’ll find rentals cheaper than in many other parts of the city. This makes it a good neighbourhood of choice for those traveling on a budget. Besides, the proximity to all the attractions will make this the best neighbourhood to stop in if your visit is short. The downside is that it is always busy and buzzing, and staying here will assure an authentic touristy experience. If you are visiting with a family, better opt for other neighbourhoods.

- Main Attractions

* Ronde Lutherse Kerk
* Torture Museum
* Begijnhof Chapel (must see)
* Centraal Station (must see)
* Dam Square Area (must see)
* Zuiderkerk (South Church)
* Dutch National Monument (must see)
* Montelbaanstoren
* Kalverstraat
* Madame Tussaud's Scenerama (must see)
* Rembrandt House Museum (must see)
* Magna Plaza
* Nieuwekerk (New Church) (must see)
* English Reformed Church
* Oude Lutherse Kerk
* Amsterdam Museum
* Royal Palace (must see)
* Torensluis

- Recommended Walks

To efficiently explore the attractions, fun and shopping venues follow any of these self-guided walking tours of downtown Amsterdam:

* City Orientation Walk
* New Side (Dam Square) Walking Tour
* Churches Walking Tour
* Kalverstraat and Leidsestraat Shopping
* Souvenir Shopping Part 1
* Nieuwmarkt Walking Tour

- Pros of Staying Here

- Great location
- Compact and walkable
- Affordable accommodation
- Nice areas to wander
- Proximity to most main landmarks
- Fine eateries, shops and clubs (Kalverstraat)
- Transport links to other neighbourhoods and airport

- Cons of Staying Here

- Very crowded and noisy

- Recommended Hotels

Luxury Suites Amsterdam (5*) - an upscale hotel offering a quiet location, great rooms with big windows, and varied on-site facilities The Lastage Inn - a wonderful bed & breakfast with a very friendly and helpful host, central yet quiet location, good breakfast and nice quirky rooms: great value for the money
The Hendrick’s Hotel (4*) - a cozy and stylish hotel featuring comfortable rooms, on-site bar and professional staff
Kimpton De Witt Amsterdam (5*) - a modern hotel with wonderful beds, boutique style decor and good breakfasts
Amsterdam House of Arts & Crafts - a wonderful bed & breakfast offering a great location, beautifully designed spacious rooms and a welcoming host
The Flying Pig Downtown - a fun hostel offering a great location, basic facilities, huge dormitories and a great atmosphere

Other hotels worth mentioning: art’otel Amsterdam (5*), INK Hotel Amsterdam - MGallery by Sofitel (4*), Budget Hotel Tourist Inn (2*)


Grachtengordel (Canal Ring)

Pronounced: [‘hrahtɛn,hɔ:rdəl]

- Overview

Grachtengordel is the place where you can experience the most genuine Amsterdam and what it is about. This neighbourhood comprises the nine streets that cross the city’s three main channels. Regardless of your reasons for visiting the city, here you will most probably find what you are looking for. Beautiful old houses and mansions alongside the channels will give you the chance to make some postcard perfect images. Small museums will meet many interests. Fine stores and eateries abounding here will feel like heaven to shopaholics and foodies. Strolling and sightseeing will form some of the most romantic memories for those in love. With all these on offer, you’ll also find a wide range of rentals varying in both quality and prices.

- Main Attractions

* Theater Museum
* Church of Our Lady
* The Cat Cabinet
* De Negen Straatjes (The Nine Little Streets)
* FOAM
* Westerkerk (West Church)
* Huis Marseille
* Magere Brug
* De Kleine Komedie
* Mint Tower
* Anne Frank House (must see)
* Biblical Museum
* Museum of Bags & Purses (must see)
* Spiegelkwartier
* Galerie Clement

- Recommended Walks

Find out what this colorful neighbourhood has to offer with the following tours:

* Western Canal Belt Walking Tour
* Southern Canal Belt Walking Tour
* 9 Small Streets (De 9 Straatjes) Shopping
* Reguliersgracht (Seven Bridges) Area Walking Tour
* Spiegelkwartier Antiques Hunting

- Pros of Staying Here

- Great location
- Wide choice of rentals
- Nice areas to wander
- Plenty of public catering, shopping and entertainment venues
- Pleasant area good for sightseeing
- Transport links to other neighbourhoods and airport

- Cons of Staying Here

- Pricier accommodation

- Recommended Hotels

Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam (5*) - a luxurious hotel hosted in 17th century palaces, offering a true 5-star experience, modern and elegant rooms and plenty of quality on-site facilities
De Hoedenmaker - a truly exclusive B&B welcoming you with intimacy, homey coziness, central yet peaceful location, great service and amazing hosts
Canal House (4*) - an elegant and cushy hotel with a good location, comfy beds and an endearing on-site garden to relax after a busy day
Bed and Breakfast 62 - a very subtle B&B welcoming you with a good location, spacious rooms, comfy beds, amazing hosts and great value for the prices charged
Hotel IX Nine Streets Amsterdam - a polished B&B-type hotel with a quiet central location, comfortable beds: good value for the money
Ambassade Hotel (4*) - a luxurious hotel hosted in 17th century mansions, offering unusually decorated rooms, professional staff and an upscale experience
A B&B Amsterdam - an very well located bed and breakfast, welcoming you with comfortable rooms and a great host: good value for the money
Miauw Suites - a very basic well located rental offering a clean and relatively affordable place to sleep in the heart of Amsterdam

Other hotels worth mentioning: The Dylan Amsterdam (5*), Hotel Seven One Seven (5*), Pulitzer Amsterdam (5*), The Blue Stairs, Banks Mansion - All Inclusive Hotel (4*), ‘t Hotel (3*), Hotel Amstelzicht (3*)


De Wallen (Red Light District)

Pronounced: [,də ‘vʌlən]

- Overview

De Wallen, aka the Red Light District, is a small central neighbourhood which truly deserves being highlighted separately. This is the naughty part of Amsterdam, continuously hosting some of the craziest and fun stag and hen parties. In the same time, it is the area of contrast, as you can walk the red (and sometimes blue) neon lighted street, and when you turn around the next corner you’ll be surprised by a charming view of sixteenth century settings and romantic channels. In this neighbourhood, you’ll find historic buildings, some of them hosting the infamous “coffeeshops”, and probably you already know that coffee is not what they actually sell. FYI, do not take any pictures in the Red Light District, it may end up really bad. Renting here would be appropriate for you if being in the middle of events, fun and noise is your game. If you are travelling with a family, consider another neighbourhood to rent in.

- Main Attractions

* St. Nicolaaskerk
* Weigh House
* Oudekerk (Old Church) (must see)
* Spinhuis
* Allard Pierson Museum
* Hash, Marijuana & Hemp Museum
* Beurs van Berlage
* Erotic Museum
* Schreierstoren
* Museum Our Lord in the Attic
* Sex Museum

- Recommended Walks

Exhilarating and crazy as it may seem at first sight, this district has a lot to entertain you with:

* Old Side Walking Tour
* Red Light District Walking Tour
* Old Center Gay Nightlife

- Pros of Staying Here

- Great location
- Compact and walkable
- Abundance of accommodation options
- Proximity to most main landmarks
- Red Light District and Coffeeshops

- Cons of Staying Here

- Very crowded and noisy
- Not recommended to families

- Recommended Hotels

Hotel TwentySeven - Small Luxury Hotels of the World (5*) - a truly exceptional hotel spoiling its visitors dripping with exquisite luxury and gorgeous views, worth every penny
Sofitel Legend the Grand Amsterdam (5*) - a well-located upscale hotel welcoming you with professional service, Michelin-starred restaurant and pleasant on-site facilities
Prinsenhof Suite - a truly remarkable bed & breakfast, with immaculate clean stylish rooms and a great host: great value for the money
City Break Amsterdam - a nice small bed & breakfast located in a touristy area in the heart of Red Light district, welcoming you with comfy beds and helpful host
Frisco Inn (2*) - a nice affordable rental offering a central location, small and clean rooms and on-site bar
St Christophers Inn at the Winston - a very youthful friendly hostel, with good breakfasts, on-site bar and restaurant, good for hen and stag dos stays

Other hotels worth mentioning: De L’Europe Amsterdam - the Leading Hotels of the World (5*), NH Collection Amsterdam Barbizon Palace (5*), Radisson Blu Hotel Amsterdam (4*), Hotel V Nesplein (4*), Hotel CC (3*)


Jordaan

Pronounced: [ɪɔr’da:n]

- Overview

A neighbourhood that used to be Amsterdam’s working-class district, Jordaan is now one of the coolest areas to stay in in town. Being well connected to other areas by public transport and offering a quite central location, it is still close to all the action but far enough from all the buzzing noise. Every traveler will find what to do here and it’d be true to state that each person renting here sees, likes and remembers Jordaan in his or her own way. History buffs will enjoy the museums. Art lovers will be enchanted by the eclectic blend of galleries. Shopaholics will have to allocate enough time to explore all the quirky bohemian stores along with trendy boutiques. Foodies will appreciate the bars and restaurants offering a remarkable culinary scene while unwinding with a nice cold one. In the same time, it is a nostalgically attractive area with a charming vibe to it, perfect for spending a romantic vacation, whether it’s your first holiday as a couple or your 50th wedding anniversary. Accommodations are averagely priced, and the limited offer of hotels in the area adds to its exclusiveness.

- Main Attractions

* Ron Mandos Gallery
* Annet Gelink Gallery
* Electric Ladyland
* Theo Thijssen Museum
* Houseboat Museum
* Rockarchive
* Tulip Museum (must see)
* Noorderkerk (North Church)

- Recommended Walks

To feel the Jordaan’s charming atmosphere at full, check out these walking tours:

* Jordaan Walking Tour
* Souvenir Shopping Part 2

- Pros of Staying Here

- Residential area
- Calm and romantic
- Eateries, bars and entertainment for any taste
- Two preferred markets

- Cons of Staying Here

- Few hotels
- No nightlife whatsoever

- Recommended Hotels

Mr. Jordaan - a small boutique style hotel with nice and cozy rooms, good location and very welcoming staff: great value for the money
Hotel Il Fiore (3*) - a well-located elegant hotel with simple yet neat rooms, helpful staff, and on-site bar and elevator
AMS Suites - a homey rental with lovely suites, comfy beds, quietly located and easy to reach from the airport

Other hotels worth mentioning: Linden Hotel (3*), The Edison Hotel (3*)


Museumkwartier (Museum Quarter)

Pronounced: [mu’sɛum,kvʌrti:r]

- Overview

Amsterdam’s quarter of intelligence and culture, Museumkwartier is home to the city’s Big Three museums: the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum and Stedelijk Museum, along with a series of other smaller art galleries. Although the neighbourhood does not have canals, here you’ll find the so-called “lungs” of the city - the Vondelpark - 120 acres of greenery where you’ll meet locals and tourists alike, watch a free concert, have a picnic and just relax. Fashionistas and shopaholics will be delighted by the exclusive chic boutiques on the P.C. Hooftstraat - Amsterdam’s posh designer shopping artery. You’ll also have a wide choice of upmarket restaurants and smaller eateries and bars. Museumkwartier is the perfect place to stay in if you would like to be close to action, but away from the noise at night. It is also a good choice when traveling with your family, if you are an art buff or shopaholic, and if you are convenience oriented and picky. There is an adequate accommodation supply, with just a few luxury hotels. Prices for rentals are average (for Amsterdam standards).

- Main Attractions

* Van Gogh Museum (must see)
* Vondelkerk
* Stedelijk Museum (must see)
* Cornelis Schuytstraat
* Rijksmuseum (must see)
* Diamond Museum
* Pieter Cornelisz Hooftstraat

- Recommended Walks

Famous for its culture and shopping this neighbourhood has a lot on offer:

* Museum Quarter Walk
* Canal Belt Nightlife

- Pros of Staying Here

- Quiet area
- Huge park to stroll and unwind
- Upscale shopping and catering venues
- Close proximity to the happening and entertaining Leidseplein square

- Cons of Staying Here

- Crowded by day, but feels empty at night

- Recommended Hotels

Conservatorium Hotel - The Leading Hotels of the World (5*) - spacious and elegant rooms and courteous staff: perfect for a romantic stay
Hotel JL No76 (4*) - a boutique-style hotel with clean and well appointed rooms, and professional staff: great for a family stay
The College Hotel (4*) - a stylish and well designed hotel with high ceiling rooms, pleasant ambience, on-site restaurant and bar, good for a romantic stay
Hotel The Neighbour’s Magnolia (3*) - a well-located hotel offering homey breakfasts, helpful staff and nice garden: good for traveling with kids
XO Hotels Van Gogh (3*) - a boutique style hotel featuring Van Gogh-inspired decor, clean rooms, comfortable beds, nice staff and good location
The Flying Pig Uptown - a fun hostel with amazing vibes, clean facilities, friendly staff: good choice for backpackers

Other hotels worth mentioning: Bilderberg Hotel Jan Luyken (4*), Hotel Cornelisz (3*), Max Brown Hotel Museum Square, Hotel Parkview (3*), Stayokay Amsterdam Vondelpark


De Pijp

Pronounced: [,də ‘paɪp]

- Overview

Once a working-class neighbourhood, in the last 60 years De Pijp has become a cool and vibrant area, where expats, immigrants and locals live side by side. Today, you’ll also meet here many creative people and students. The area is colorful and diverse, embroidered with narrow townhouses and streets which were originally set for low-income families. De Pijp is a foodie’s heaven, offering a plethora of eateries serving cuisine from all around the world. If you’re up for a drink, you’ll have a variety of convivial cafes, modern bars and old-fashioned pubs to choose from. Many of them have late-night licenses, so you won’t be bored in this neighbourhood. Staying here is best for you if you’d like to experience Amsterdam as a local, or if you are willing to stay a while and pay less. If travelling with kids, you’ll find some entertainment options to keep them distracted. There are not too many rentals on offer. However De Pijp is the place where upscale hotels are cheaper than in other neighbourhoods.

- Main Attractions

* Heineken Experience
* Sarphatipark
* House with the Gnomes

- Recommended Walks

Diverse and charming, De Pijp is definitely a must-experience area:

* Pijp Walking Tour

- Pros of Staying Here

- Cheaper rentals
- Street market and park
- Plenty of eateries
- Vibrant atmosphere
- Less touristy

- Cons of Staying Here

- Fewer accommodation options

- Recommended Hotels

Hotel Okura Amsterdam – The Leading Hotels of the World (5*) - an upscale hotel offering more than Amsterdam-typical-sized rooms, comfort combined with Japanese quality and attention to details, ideal for a business or romantic stay
Sir Albert Hotel (4*) - a very elegant hotel with a great location, good on-site restaurant, nice rooms and comfortable beds
Nine(T) Teen - a neat bed and breakfast welcoming you with nice rooms, good location and helpful hosts: good value for the money
The Arcade Hotel Amsterdam (3*) - a niche-oriented hotel with plenty of gaming options and fun atmosphere: good for parents renting with teenagers

Other hotels worth mentioning: ibis Styles Amsterdam Amstel (3*), Hotel Atlantis Amsterdam (3*), easyHotel Amsterdam City Centre South (2*)


Plantage & Oost

Pronounced: [plʌn’tʌʒɪ], [‘ɔ:ust]

- Overview

Plantage & Oost are a different part of Amsterdam. As opposed to the city’s usual cobblestoned streets and canals, here you’ll find tree-lined streets and refreshing verdant boulevards. Plantage has an elegant feel to it, while Oost is more vibrant and hip. It is a great neighbourhood to stay in for families or travelling with children. You’ll find family-friendly attractions and entertainment venues. Plantage is the part where many Jews found their hiding places during the Holocaust, and the whole area bears Jewish heritage. You can explore plenty of attractions here, such as the Jewish Historical Museum, Hermitage Amsterdam, historic flea market Waterloopleinmarkt, Artis Royal Zoo, Hortus Botanicus (one of the oldest activating botanical gardens in the world, established in the 17th century) and many more, or just sit back and relax in the Wertheimpark. Beware that in Plantage you won’t find many eateries or bars, and no nightlife whatsoever. Oost is most popular for its wide streets lined with 19th century settings, contrasting with its dynamic life, with plenty of restaurants, bars and clubs. However, here you’ll find more hotels in modern and renovated buildings, hence the offer of larger, more spacious rooms and elevators instead of typical steep stairs. Being a mostly residential neighbourhood, it provides an adequate accommodation supply, for every wallet and taste.

- Main Attractions

* Natura Artis Magistra Zoo (must see)
* Jewish Historical Museum (must see)
* Hortus Botanicus (must see)
* Mozes en Aaronkerk
* Rembrandt Tower
* Auschwitz Monument
* Hermitage Amsterdam (must see)
* Royal Theater Carre
* Hollandsche Schouwburg
* Verzetsmuseum (must see)
* Portuguese Synagogue (must see)
* Waterlooplein Flea Market (must see)

- Recommended Walks

Try to feel at most the heritage of this neighbourhood when following these tours:

* Plantage Walking Tour
* Jewish Quarter Walking Tour

- Pros of Staying Here

- Varied accommodation
- Nice areas to wander
- Residential and family-friendly
- Many kid-friendly attractions
- Elegant and pleasant atmosphere

- Cons of Staying Here

- Eateries and entertainment venues are mostly clustered in certain regions
- Some parts may seem remote from the center

- Recommended Hotels

Breitner House - an amazing townhouse offering large classically decorated rooms and wonderful location: a unique luxurious experience
Hyatt Regency Amsterdam (5*) - an upscale hotel with elegant modern rooms, Indonesian restaurant and other on-site facilities
QO Amsterdam (4*) - a sustainable smart hotel hosted in a modern building featuring spacious rooms with huge windows, 21st floor bar with views and blue-chip restaurant
Motel One Amsterdam - Waterlooplein - a well yet quietly located motel with clean rooms, approachable staff and good value for the money
The Student Hotel Amsterdam City (4*) - a colorful, quirky and fun youthful hotel, a bit remote but right next to metro and tram stations, with a bar, gym and other good on-site facilities
Hotel Casa Amsterdam (3*) - a boutique-style hotel with modern, clean and spacious rooms, helpful staff and gorgeous rooftop terrace

Other hotels worth mentioning: InterContinental Amstel Amsterdam (5*), Hotel V Fizeaustraat (4*), Mercure Hotel Amsterdam City South (4*), Generator Amsterdam, Amigo Budget Hostel


Oostelijk Havengebied (Eastern Docklands)

Pronounced: [‘ɔ:ustəlɪk ‘hævenhæbɪt]

- Overview

The neighbourhood represents a spotty blend of old and new, century-old industrial buildings and modern settings: many former warehouses were transformed into residential blocks. Interestingly, on the Scheepstimmermanstraat you’ll find a row of warehouses redesigned by citizens themselves into their homes. Eastern Docklands is mostly a residential area, and many travelers will define their own reason to stay in this neighbourhood. Architecture and design buffs will have a lot to explore. Foodies will be glad to find several fine restaurants. Sightseeing enthusiasts will appreciate the great views over the water or even join a cruise ship. Parents can take their kids to the Science Center Nemo to discover many unknown and interesting things together. There are not too many rentals on offer, but luckily most of the available ones are hosted in modern buildings with elevators. Price wise, accommodations are at the expensive part of Amsterdam’s average, with just a few cheaper options available.

- Main Attractions

* Science Center NEMO (must see)
* Netherlands Maritime Museum (must see)

- Recommended Walks

Different from the historic center, in this area you’ll find both old and new:

* Nieuwe Vaart Canal Walking Tour
* Old Center Museums Walk

- Pros of Staying Here

- Nice areas for walking and sightseeing
- Residential and pleasing
- Fun things to do and discover

- Cons of Staying Here

- Fewer and pricier rentals
- Few eateries and entertainment venues

- Recommended Hotels

Hotel Jakarta Amsterdam (4*) - a brand new hotel resembling a small oasis, with good breakfasts and varied pleasant on-site facilities
Hampton by Hilton Amsterdam Centre East (4*) - comfy beds, clean rooms and satisfying facilities: good for a family stay
Pension Homeland - a simple and affordable accommodation displaying some inspiring views, on-site bar and friendly staff: good for a family stay

Other hotels worth mentioning: Mövenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre (4*), Lloyd Hotel (3*), Stayokay Amsterdam Oost (Zeeburg)


Part 3. Getting from the airport to your hotel

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is the largest airport in Netherlands, located about nine miles South-West of the city center. Handling more than 60 million passengers every year, it is also the third largest airport in Europe. Part of these passengers are in transit, while most of them are visiting Amsterdam or other adjacent locations. Regardless, this flow of guests is easily handled. As Amsterdam has an outstanding public transport system, it won’t be difficult for you to get to downtown. If you are reluctant to use that option, there are other ones available.

Train

No matter what exit you use when leaving the Schiphol Airport, you’ll be in a short walking distance from the train station. You can find trains departing to Amsterdam at platforms 1-2 and 3 (subject to change). On average, there are 10 trains per hour running between 6.00 am and 12.30 am. Night trains operate between 2am and 5am, once per hour. Prices per ticket vary according to the class you choose, the most expensive one-way ticket being for 1st class, at a price of €8.20 (~US $10.60). Do not buy a return ticket, unless you are coming back to the airport on the same day. Tickets can be purchased at the Train Tickets and Services desk, or at automatic ticket machines, which are easy to identify - colored in yellow and blue. You can only use Euro coins or debit/credit cards with ticket machines (at the moment when this article was written, American Express was not accepted). Banknotes are not accepted.

The destination you are heading to and need to choose when buying a ticket is Amsterdam Central Station. By the platforms, you’ll see screens displaying train schedules, and there you’d be looking for trains that have Amsterdam Centraal as their final stop or Amsterdam C (which is the same Central Station) listed as one of the stops on its route. The journey will last 15-20 minutes, and as soon as you get to the Central Station, follow the “Centrum” signs to exit.

The most recommended train from the Schiphol Airport to the Central Station would be the Intercity Direct. It runs once in approximately 30 minutes and is more comfortable for tourists, especially when carrying a lot of luggage.

Bus and Shuttle

Yet another cheap way to get to downtown is by taking the bus. Bus line 397 will bring you right to the Museumkwartier, having several stops there. One-way ticket will cost you €6.00 (~US $7.00), and among other options, can be purchased directly from the driver or online in advance. If you need to get closer to Centrum, however, you should know that there are no direct buses from the airport to the Amsterdam Central Station.

The night bus line 97 has the same route, and runs every 30 minutes between approximately 1.45am and 4am.

To have a better chance to get as close as possible to your hotel, you might consider the available shuttle services. The Connexxion, a local transport company, has contracts with more than 100 hotels and its shuttle can get you right to your hotel’s doors. You can learn everything you need about this service online, or at the Schiphol Hotel Shuttle service desk at Arrivals 4. A one-way ride for a passenger costs €17.50 (~ US $20.40), but the bigger the group you are travelling with, the lower the price per person per ride. The shuttle runs every 30 minutes, and the duration of the journey depends on the location of your hotel and traffic.

The Schiphol Airport provides “Travel Taxi” minibus service. Technically, this is a shared minibus taxi, and it can take you to any address in Amsterdam. The average price of the ride to the city center is about €25.00 (~ US $29.15). This is a better option if you are staying in a hotel that is not on the Connexxion’s Schiphol Hotel Shuttle partner hotel list.

Taxis and Car Rental

Getting a cab is an easy way to get to Amsterdam city center. Note, that not all taxis are licenced, and usually look different: their main distinguishing signs are the blue plates and roof lights. Oftentimes, especially at rush hours, you’ll have to stand in line to get one, so depending on the time of your arrival you might be more interested to pre-book it. There are several companies offering pre-booking possibilities, and besides making sure you won’t have to stand in a line you’ll also have a guarantee to get a better English speaking driver. Generally, the trip to downtown takes 20-30 minutes, subject to traffic, and costs around €40 (~ US $47).

Usually companies that allow you to pre-book a taxi also provide private transfer services, in case you are looking for a more luxury vehicle or have other certain preferences.

Although bicycles are the predominant transportation mean in Amsterdam, we’d recommend renting one only in the case that you are a very experienced cyclist. If you are not, it would be a lot better to consider renting a car, right from your arrival. Prices depend on the renting period and car type.


Part 4. A Few Tips to Choose the Right Neighbourhood for You

Still not sure what Amsterdam neighbourhood to stay in? Here are some more tips that will help you to take a decision.

Centrum would be the most convenient neighbourhood to rent in if your visit to Amsterdam is short, and if you want to be in the closest proximity to all the main attractions and fun. Here you’ll also have the most touristy experience. For a longer stay in Amsterdam better pick De Pijp.

If you’re looking for high culture and luxury, and not willing to compromise on comfort, stay in Museumkwartier. When travelling on a budget, choose either Centrum or Plantage & Oost, as in these two out of the above recommended neighbourhoods you’ll find some of the cheapest rentals.

When visiting with a family, opt for De Pijp, Museumkwartier or Plantage & Oost. In these neighbourhoods you’ll benefit of a good environment, varied entertainment opportunities and family-friendly rentals.

If you have issues with stairs, opt for Plantage & Oost or Oostelijk Havengebied, as here you will find more rentals hosted in modern buildings with elevators. The downside is that you might need to use the public transport more, as these areas are a bit remote with regard to the city center.

If you’d like to experience genuine Amsterdam, stay in Jordaan or Grachtengordel. Besides, here you’ll be surrounded by photogenic architecture, make them great places to stay in for some of the most gorgeous pictures you can take here.

If you are looking for a residential area, Jordaan and Plantage would suit you best. If romantic and quiet is what you crave for, Jordaan, Grachtengordel and Plantage would be the perfect neighbourhoods for you to rent in in Amsterdam.

For cultural and artsy experiences, stay in Museumkwartier, Jordaan or Oostelijk Havengebied. These neighbourhoods will offer you a variety of small and world-known museums, as well as music and art galleries.

For upscale restaurants at hand choose Museumkwartier. Besides, foodies will rejoice at the variety of eateries in Oost, and De Pijp is a true foody’s heaven.

If shopping is your thing, then stay in Grachtengordel or Museumkwartier.

Last, but not the least, for the most juicy nightlife in the city, stay in De Wallen. For a less saucy experience, but still a lot of fun, opt for Ost or De Pijp.

Varied and colorful as it is, Amsterdam will meet and greet every visitor, and for sure will leave everyone some unforgettable delightful memories.