Do you remember last August, I posted a blog titled A Weekend in Amsterdam that included some images of one of the most picturesque scenes in the city—the Amsterdam canals.
In the previous post, the canals were only a stop or two on the agenda, but some people can centre their entire trip on exploring all that the waterways have to offer. Although there’s certainly still a chill in the air now compared to last summer, this is the time of year that the canals start buzzing, as residents and tourist alike get excited for the activities the upcoming spring has in store for them.
Here are just some of the best ways you can experience every aspect of the Amsterdam city canals, the next time you visit : The Venice of the North.
There are several different ways you can travel the canals as you explore the ins and outs of the waterways and observe the gorgeous scenery. Luckily, each mode of transportation is just as exciting as their surroundings.
The Canal Bus is certainly one of the most popular ways to navigate through the waters of Amsterdam. Its glass ceiling and sides provide passengers with an open view of the canal while also being effective against any unexpected spring showers. The same as a city bus, you can by a 24- or 48-hour pass and hop on and off as many times as you like at many of the most popular stops along the canal.
You can also cruise the water with your own privately rented boat, or canal bike (paddle boat), that will allow you to explore every inch of the canals at your own leisure. We did this whilst enjoying a wine and cheese evening…very romantic!
As British Airways points out here, many people travel alongside the canals to take advantage of the numerous cafes that line the water. Terraces and outdoor patios extend all the way to the edge of the canal, allowing visitors to enjoy lunch or grab a coffee while taking in the sights and sounds of the water.
Indulge in everything from Poffertjes (small pancakes) to Bitterballen, which are deep fried snacks that Awesome Amsterdam says are ubiquitous to all the cafes and bars throughout Netherlands, I’m really sorry that we missed those. As good as the food will be, it’ll become even better while you’re enjoying the breeze coming off the water, ans people watching.
The Floating Flower Market
First held in 1862, the floating flower market on the Singel canal is the only one of its kind in the world. All of the flowers and merchandise from the shops are displayed on floating barges or houseboats so patrons can shop while walking atop the city’s waterway.
I spoke of the floating and non floating flower shops in my previous post on Amsterdam, and I imagine that many who visit the spot for the first time have a similar reaction: “There were definitely eccentricity everywhere. This was a huge floor to ceiling bay window, filled at the bottom with plants, and the top with globes. Completely random, I’ve no idea why, but it made us smile.”
The first day of spring happens in just a few weeks, so mark your calendars and make sure you visit Amsterdam for a trip you won’t soon forget.