The Netherlands’ prettiest symbol gets its day in the sun at this sprawling garden outside Amsterdam. More than seven million bulbs of 800 different kinds of tulips bloom across 79 manicured acres – open only between mid-March and mid-May every year. The park also offers family-friendly activities like treasure hunts and hedge mazes.
Discover 800 years of Dutch art and history in an international context at this iconic museum, which reopened in 2013 after a ten-year renovation. Spot world-famous works by the likes of Rembrandt and Van Gogh alongside archaeological artefacts and 20th-century fashion. The building itself – designed by Pierre Cuypers and opened in 1885 – is a work of art in its own right.
Join the locals for basking, strolling, and other outdoor adventures at Amsterdam’s favourite park. The 120-acre public garden draws thousands of people each day to its open-air theatres, cafés and restaurants, bike paths, and rose garden. Rent skates to cruise around the park and, in summer, catch free outdoor music.
One of Amsterdam’s most striking buildings, perched on the river IJ, houses the Netherlands’ national film museum and archive. Watch thousands of films from around the world, peruse exhibitions of posters and multimedia art, and participate in family-friendly workshops. After screenings of new independent films, grab a bite to eat at one of the city’s most scenic restaurants.
The world’s only floating flower market lines one side of the scenic Singel canal, in the city’s historic heart. Take time to smell the fresh flowers and stock up on bulbs – especially the Netherlands’ renowned tulips – and seeds to take home. Many of the vendors also sell other souvenirs, and, in winter, holiday decorations.
Walk the halls of painter Rembrandt van Rijn’s historic canal house, restored to how it looked when he resided here in the 17th century. The museum regularly hosts exhibitions of the artist’s lesser-known works, as well as contemporary creatives inspired by him. Participate in art demonstrations and workshops, and discover Amsterdam through the master’s eyes.
Cross the Amstel River at dusk to experience the most romantic side of this scenic pedestrian bridge. Expanded multiple times since its creation – it used to be too narrow for two to walk abreast – the ‘Skinny Bridge’ has retained its historic design. Ask the locals about the legends behind its origins.
Image credits: © Keukenhof Gardens; © Rijksmuseum; © Getty; © Ralph Richter; © Getty; © Rembrandt House Museum; © Getty; © Getty