Comfortable shoes are a must as you’ll be walking everywhere. Especially if it takes you a couple of days to work out the tram system.
Hayfever tablets, Amsterdam has a lot of trees and I spent most of the weekend sneezing my way through tourist attractions. The supermarkets did not have any allergy medication (I google translated the phrase and everything) so the best I could do was to buy a 12 pack of tissues and wait it out.
Plug adapters – although Amsterdam has the same voltage as the UK they use the two round pin plugs instead of the three square pin plugs us Brits are used to.
I would suggest spending a long weekend in Amsterdam, we went from Thursday to Monday and it was nice to have a couple of days without the hoard of stag and hen parties that spring up on Saturday.
We flew from Southampton and the flight took little over an hour, by the time you take off you hardly have enough time to open your book before you’re landing again. The flights cost around £100 per person if you book way in advance – however, be warned that the plane will have propellers and not jet engines.
The airport is pretty straight forward, as soon as you land and get passed the (grumpy) passport controllers, it’s just a straight line down to claim your baggage.
From there you’ll find yourself in the train station where I would suggest purchasing the public transport chip card from GVB that allows you unlimited use on the trains, trams and busses.
Where to stay
In every city you’ll find budget options and expensive options and Amsterdam is no different. Prices vary throughout the year and you’ll more than likely end up paying more during the summer, the cheapest months to travel to and stay in Amsterdam are January, February, March, October and November.
Our (cheap) hotel was not located in the centre of Amsterdam, which meant that we needed to get a train and then a connecting bus in order to get to and from our hotel. This was extremely inconvenient as it meant that when we left the hotel in the morning, we were out for the whole day – not good for avid nappers and people who can’t handle the sun. If we went again, I think we would all agree that we would stay in the city centre or at least somewhere that’s only a tram ride away.
Ann Frank Huis
The Ann Frank Huis is one of the most popular museums in Amsterdam so expect a long queue that snakes around the streets. Although rumour has it that you can pre-order tickets for a certain time slot and just turn up! It is an amazingly eerie place to visit, and for just €9 I would definitely recommend it.
Vondelpark is the largest park in Amsterdam and is the most popular park for tourists. I can understand why as the park is amazingly beautiful with an abundance of flowers and lakes.