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Hotels in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is a charming city, from its unusual and colourful architecture, to its serene canals, friendly people, famed red light district, world-class museums, and wonderful eateries. Amsterdam is one of Europe’s great cities, historically important, architecturally brilliant and forward thinking, and as one of the Continent’s staples, staying in this city will afford you a chance to embrace the wonderful Dutch culture.

Where should you stay in Amsterdam?

Amsterdam Centrum

Staying in central Amsterdam has its pros and cons. For pros, you will find that the centre is vibrant, very pretty and close to attractions like the Anne Frank Museum—an emotional and fascinating insight into her life as described in her famous diary. You will also be within close proximity of the science centre NEMO, and a variety of shops, restaurants and nightlife. The downside is that access to all of this comes at a price; the most expensive hotels tend to be located here, and whether you want a luxury hotel or not, the costs will be significantly higher in this part of Amsterdam.

Red Light District

Amsterdam’s Red Light District is notorious across all of Europe, but whilst this area was once unsavoury, it is now one of the up and coming districts in the city. In fact, you’ll find that there are lots of trendy bars and restaurants making their way into this unusual neighbourhood. Obviously, families are best to avoid this area, but otherwise the Red Light District is pretty safe and is policed should you want to stay in this colourful and central part of town.

De Pijp

You won’t find a big variety of hotels in this neighbourhood, apart from a couple luxury options like the Savoy. You can find self-service apartments for rent, which may be the ticket if you want to explore De Pijp. It is considered one of the city’s best gastronomic areas, with a number of Michelin starred restaurants, markets, bars, and it is even within striking distance of the Heineken Experience for anyone that loves Dutch beer.

Oud Zuid

Shopaholics will find that the Old South of Amsterdam has the best access to both designer brands and high street fashion. But Oud Zuid isn’t just for shoppers, with the Concertgebouw nearby holding musical concerts, and the Museum Quarter next door, you can take a break from browsing clothes and browse Rembrandts instead. Restaurants, cafes and bars, as well as hostels and hotels from 2-5 stars abound in this area of town.

Leidseplein and Rembrandtplein

These two neighbourhoods are really for travellers who want to enjoy the city’s celebrated night life. There are lots of bars and tons of restaurants—especially in Leidseplein, as well as a decent variety of shops. For the gay and lesbian scene, Rembrandtplein is the better neighbourhood to stay in. Just be warned, these areas can be full of evening revellers, so if you like to go to bed early, then Leidseplein and Rembrantplein may not be the ideal neighbourhoods to check into.  

Museum Quarter

For culture vultures there is no better place to stay in this city than in the Museum Quarter, where you will have access to some of the best art museums in the world, including the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum and the Stedelijk Museum, all of which touch on the Golden Age of Dutch and Flemish Painting. Like De Pijp, you’re close to the Heineken Brewery if all the touring leaves you thirsty. For accommodation, you can find a healthy variety of budget, moderate and luxury options in this quarter.  

The Plantagebuurt

Another great neighbourhood for arts and culture (and a little bit of greenery) is the Plantagebuurt, right next to the Museum Quarter. There is the Jewish Historical Museum, the Botanical Garden, the Artis Royal Zoo, and a few pretty parks like the Oosterpark and Wertheimpark.  


If you want to forgo the darker elements of Amsterdam’s nightlife, than quiet, quaint Jordaan might be the place to set up shop. There are markets, narrow canals, interesting boutiques, parks and smaller art galleries you can explore. Perfect for a relaxed tour of Amsterdam. 

Transport in Amsterdam

The public transport in Amsterdam is excellent, but since most of central Amsterdam is compact, you won’t find yourself needing to use it all that often, except when you go to and from the airport. It is a great place to cycle, and you will find lots of bike rental shops throughout the city and especially in the centre of town. If you’d rather stick to walking, but want to hop across the city quickly, the trams and buses in the city are very well run—purchase the city’s travel smart card, the OV-chipkaart, if you think you’ll be using these services regularly.