Amsterdam is definitely one of the most popular tourist places on Earth, with hundreds of things to see and do. Whether you have already been there or not, you might find those next five places interesting, even though some of them are a bit away from the main tourist routes of this city.
Poezenboot (The Cat Boat)
You must definitely visit this extraordinary floating cat sanctuary, especially if you are a cat person. Situated in a boat house on one of the main Amsterdam canals, Singel 38 G, this place is the home of some of Amsterdam’s lucky and no longer stray cats. The sanctuary is run entirely by volunteers. They take daily care of the cats and most importantly, keep the inhabitants of this extraordinary boat company, to make them feel loved and at home. Everyone can visit the cat boat sanctuary, play with the cats and see the interesting home they have there.
The visiting hours are daily from 1 p.m. till 3 p.m., except on Wednesdays and Sundays. There is no entrance fee, but if you want you can always buy some souvenirs or simply make a donation, to help the volunteers keep running this wonderful place.
For more info about De Poezenboot, visit:
XtraCold Ice Bar
Situated on Amstel 194 -196, this extraordinary bar, as its name suggests, is very cold, just like on The North Pole. But you needn’t worry. The drinks they serve you there will keep you warm. Even if they are all served in glasses made of ice.
The XtraCold Ice Bar is a very interesting place to visit. You will be given a warm coat and a pair of gloves and after viewing a short movie about the discovery of new and faraway lands, you will enter the ice bar itself, where the temperature is -10 degrees Celsius. In it everything is made from ice, the bar, the sitting spots, the glasses. Take a drink, make some pictures and enjoy this amazing place, where your drinking buddies are the polar bears. After that you can go to the other, “normal”, and warm part of the bar, and take another drink to gather back your warmth.
Entrance fee is around 20 euro but the exact amount depends on the time of visit, on whether there are some promotions at the moment or whether you combined the visit to the bar with some other tourist attraction in Amsterdam. The entrance fee includes three drinks.
It is better to visit the website of XtraCold Ice Bar in advance to make a reservation because without it, entrance cannot be guaranteed.
House of Bols
The next place we will visit in Amsterdam is situated on the infamous Museumplein (Museum square), where all the biggest museums, as Rijksmuseum, Museum Van Gogh and Stedelijk museum are situated. Our place of interest though is a little different. Situated on Paulus Potterstraat 14, The House of Bols is the place where you can learn about and taste The Netherlands emblematic liqueur, the genever. In the House of Bols you can learn how it is made and then try some of the types of genever. You can choose between all the different tastes the genever has and decide on which is your favorite. Later on, at the end of the tour, in the Mirror Bar, you can combine those tastes, with the help of an interactive computer screen, to make your own cocktail recipe, which the bartenders will happily mix especially for you.
The entrance fee to the House of Bols is 15 euro and includes not only the tour but also two cocktails. The ticket can also be combined with other tours in Amsterdam, thus making it cheaper.
For more info, visit:
I know it may sound a bit strange to include a shopping mall in this list of places to visit, but hey, don’t we all like to make a shopping trip every now and then? And besides, this particular mall is a bit different. The building itself is a historical one. It used to be the main post office in Amsterdam before it became a shopping center. It has one of the most beautiful facades, a remarkable piece of architecture. It is situated right behind the Koninklijk Paleis (The Royal Palace) and Nieuwe Kerk (The New Church), in the very heart of the city. Even if you are not a big fan of shopping and places full of hustle and bustle, as every shopping mall is, you must at least have a look at the remarkable facade of this magnificent building. Magna Plaza could easily be mistaken for a Royal palace, because it looks as such much more than the real one nearby. It looks like the home of a fairy princess taken from a gothic child’s story.
If you still want to make the best of this visit and take advantage of all such a mall can offer, visit the Magna Plaza website, to be well informed in advance:
Last but not least, if you are visiting Amsterdam in the warmer part of the year, do take advantage of what one of the most beautiful parks in the city can offer you. If you go there in the weekend you will very easily be able to feel like a local. This beautiful park is full of people – biking, running, walking, sunbathing or playing family games on the green lawns. You can have a coffee or beer in one of the restaurants and cafes, or you can bring your own food and drinks, like most of the locals do, and have a picnic on the grass. There are lanes for bikers and lanes for walking. There are lakes with swans. There are a lot of beautiful flower gardens, with the emblematic tulips. If you are a fan of architecture and design and have enough time, take a walk around the outer side of the park. The most expensive mansions in Amsterdam are situated there.