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A Quick Guide to Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Though he now lives in Lithuania, Jeremey was born in the Netherlands and still remembers his home country fondly.

The Duchess Tea Room Amsterdam

The Duchess Tea Room Amsterdam

Things to Do in Amsterdam

Traveling to Amsterdam and not sure what to do? Skip the Red Light District and opt for these more authentic activities instead. A tip: To get around the city, I use the Amsterdam City Card. It gives free access to several museums, but also to the public transport system, which is a big plus.

Have a Tea at the Duchess

Housed in the glorious W Hotel in Amsterdam, this tearoom makes you feel like royalty. Choose one of the afternoon tea variants and revel in how splendidly each of the numerous small meals is served one after another on stately, tiered trays.

You can choose one of the Mariage Frères tea blends or, like a true aristocrat, have a glass of bubbly. Another reason to stop by is the plush interior with marble table tops and loads of flower bouquets.

Dutch Resistance Museum Amsterdam

Dutch Resistance Museum Amsterdam

Visit the Dutch Resistance Museum

Amsterdam is famous for its small and unusual museums. One of these is the Dutch Resistance Museum, which is devoted to one of the darkest periods in the country’s history: the Nazi German occupation, which lasted from 1940 to 1945.

The museum’s exhibits depict all kinds of open and hidden forms of resistance that local inhabitants displayed against the regime. The permanent exposition consists of an audio-visual installation of photographs, old posters, film and audio clips, bringing visitors back to wartime Amsterdam.

Tuschinski Cinema House Amsterdam

Tuschinski Cinema House Amsterdam

Visit the Tuschinski Cinema House

Not only is the giant and opulent Tuschinski cinema house one of Amsterdam’s favorite buildings, but it is also one of the most beautiful movie theaters in the world.

Jewish tailor Abraham Icek Tuschinski, an immigrant from Poland, commissioned the building in 1921, with the determination to employ only the best people, ideas, and materials in the construction. The facade and interior feature a successful blend of Art Deco, Neo-Gothic, and Amsterdam School styles that reflected Tuschinski’s personal taste.

The imposing facade is adorned on both sides by tall towers, while inside, the main auditorium seats 740, including on sofas and in private boxes where wine and snacks are served.

Bar Botanique Amsterdam

Bar Botanique Amsterdam

Have a Drink at Bar Botanique

Amsterdam’s gastronomy scene already boasts a restaurant in a palm house and another in a functioning complex of greenhouses, and Bar Botanique completes the small club of eating establishments that are bringing nature and woodlands into the city, so to speak.

The walls, ceilings and interior of the Bar Botanique are covered with exotic plants, whose mass of foliage is reflected all around in a myriad of mirrors. The colours of nature are enhanced by green and rose marble tables and a bright yellow espresso machine.

The appearance of the bar—designed by the Dutch firm Studio Modijefsky—seems to change constantly, thanks to the growth of the plants and strategically placed lighting. The Bar Botanique is perfect for a light lunch or an informal, bistro-style dinner.

Dutch Stroopwafel

Dutch Stroopwafel

Try a Famous Dutch Stroopwafel

On a windy day, which is not uncommon in Amsterdam, nothing is more rewarding than a warm, gooey, freshly baked stroopwafel. Just follow the fragrant aroma that will lead you to the street vendor.

The “syrup waffle” consists of two thin waffles stuck together with a layer of syrup graciously oozing out between them. Invented in Gouda in the 19th century, stroopwafels are the other delicacy the famous cheese city can be proud of.

Every local will assure you that the best stroopwafel comes from a food truck in the middle of Albert Cuyp Market. This family-run stall has been making stroopwafels according to the authentic Goudsche Siroopwafels recipe for generations.

© 2019 Jeremy East