In August, me and my sister took a trip on the bank holiday weekend to Amsterdam, we went from Friday to Monday and in this post I thought that I would share what we got up to to help anyone who might be going in the future and to share some of the photographs that I took along the way.
We booked our trip through Expedia as this meant that we could book our flights at the same time as our accommodation and make the whole process quicker and easier.
We chose to have a very early flight to Amsterdam from Cardiff and a late one coming home to maximise the amount of time there. The flight only took 55 minutes each way which was incredible and I loved that I was able to look out of the window and see the ground/sea for most of the flight. It definitely was the fastest flight that I have ever been on!
TIP – if you go to Amsterdam and want to see the iconic ‘I AMsterdam’ sign, as you leave the airport to go to the train station there are revolving doors which will lead you to the sign and it is super quiet. We were so shocked that we were able to get pictures that had no people in!
We booked to stay in the Ibis Center Hotel which was just by the central station and meant that it was super close to everything which was amazing. The hotel was quite basic but it suited us for exactly what we needed which was just a place to sleep in the evenings. The room had a double bed, some storage for clothes, a safe, a TV and a very small bathroom with a toilet, sink and shower. We didn’t spend lots of time in the hotel and to save money we chose to find cafe’s to eat breakfast/brunch rather than paying the more expensive cost in the hotel.
Originally, we hadn’t planned out all of the different places that we wanted to go to – this is something that I would change as we could’ve planned our days a lot better. On our first day (the Friday) we left our cases in a safe place at the hotel as we were way too early for check in and set off to get some brunch. We found a great waffle and crepe cafe and then decided on our plan for the day. If you visit Amsterdam, there are cafe’s absolutely everywhere which makes it really easy to find breakfast, brunch or desserts and they are all pretty affordable. After this, we decided to visit the Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Museum. We looked around at ticket prices and discovered that the cheapest way was to buy them through Groupon (we found this a lot throughout the trip). This museum was amazing and I’d definitely recommend giving it a visit, its full of so many interesting things and is very entertaining. For the rest of our first day, we spent it wandering the streets and looking at all of the beautiful canals and amazing buildings. We decided to eat dinner in our hotel as it was very reasonably priced (but the alcohol definitely wasn’t and wasn’t no matter where we went haha).
On our second day, we decided to do a canal boat tour. This was something that I knew I always wanted to do on the trip and they were all very similar in price range. We booked our tickets the night before at the LOVERS stall as we knew that it was very popular. As we turned up for our 11 o clock slot, it was very full and we had to sit at the back, so if you’re like me and like a good window seat for good pictures then I’d recommend turning up around 15 minutes early. Me and my sister really enjoyed the canal tour and it gave us lots of ideas of more places that we wanted to explore in the area – it was so worth the money so this is a must if you visit Amsterdam. On this day we also visited the Sex Museum which was 5 euro to enter, it was quite busy when we went but very cheap – which not many things were! Also on this day, we walked to the Botanical Gardens which were by Wertheimpark, this cost us 9 euro each entry but it was well worth it. The gardens were all stunning and had amazing views and you could even go in to a green house filled with butterflies and watch them be fed. That evening, we went to a restaurant that we had spotted whilst on the canal tour and although it was pricey, the food was amazing and we got to sit right on the waterfront.
On our third day, we treated ourselves to English breakfasts as brunch in a lovely little cafe which was near our hotel. After this, we booked tickets to Madame Tussauds (once again, we booked through GroupOn as it was so much cheaper). I was shocked at how big the wax museum was and how many different celebrities they had.. some of my favourites including Zayn Malik, Ariana Grande and Obama. That evening, we booked tickets to go to the Xtra Cold Ice Bar which was 18 euros each which seems expensive, but this deal includes 3 drinks and it was such an incredible experience. You get taken on a ‘mission’ to the arctic where you are given coats and gloves and are taken in to a bar where everything is frozen.. even the cups that you drink out of. It was such a crazy experience and I couldn’t recommend it enough (especially because they had shots which tasted just like Nutella). That evening, we found another restaurant for dinner and then stood on one of the canals to watch the sunset which was stunning.
On our final day, we slightly struggled on what we should do as we had packed so much in to the previous days. We decided to walk to the flower market which was about a 40 minute walk from our hotel but it was worth it. I ended up buying a few souvenirs for myself and friends which were way more affordable than the shops on the main streets. For lunch this day, we decided to try their McDonalds as my friend who had previously visited, told me that they do sweet potato fries so I had to try them and they definitely lived up to my expectations. From there, we walked to Vondelpark and sat here for a few hours just enjoying the sun and views. This area was lovely as it was a lot more quiet than the centre where we were staying and it felt as though we were surrounded by locals. After this, we headed back to our hotel, picked up our bags and headed back to the massive airport via the train.
Overall, I had such an amazing time on this 4 day trip and as you can probably tell, it was very jam packed. Although it was tiring, it was so worth it and I would definitely visit again in the future.
My top 3 things that we did would definitely be:
- The Xtra Cold Ice Bar
- The canal boat tour
- Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Museum
I hope that this post was informative and helped you if you are planning on visiting Amsterdam any time soon or that you enjoyed reading and seeing my pictures anyway.
Thank you so much for reading, I hope that you enjoyed this post. If you’d like to follow me on Instagram or Twitter you can follow me at @bethxkate.