Colloquially known as the ‘Venice of the North’, Amsterdam has something for everyone
The financial, cultural and creative centre of the Netherlands, Amsterdam is one of the greatest small cities in the world frequented by more than 11 million tourists each year. Affectionately known as the ‘Venice of the North’ thanks to its world-renowned belt of winding canals, impressive architecture and more than 1,500 bridges, the capital is home to world-famous museums, historical points of interest, lauded nightlife and an incredible dining scene.
With all the advantages of a big city within cycling distance or a short ride on a well-linked transport network of trams, metros, buses and even via its canals, Amsterdam remains a popular destination for short breaks. With plenty to offer to discerning business travellers with either a few hours or few days to spare, there is plenty on offer to keep you entertained, especially lovers of architecture; with most of the city’s popular tourist attractions located within one of the best-preserved historical town centres in the world.
Housed within this eight square kilometre centre, you’ll find 7,800 monumental buildings – primarily from the 17th and 18th centuries – appearing alongside modern architecture developed to complement the existing historical building facades. Amsterdam Centre also sports more than 2,200 shops – a quarter of all shops in the city – and close-to half of all the city’s restaurants and cafes.
Additionally, the wider-metropolitan area has a lot to offer; with excursions to the Cheese Market at Alkmaar, the traditional fishermens’ villages of Marken and Voldendam and the unique Dutch countryside north of Amsterdam all welcome places to escape the crowded city centre.