Amsterdam, what can I say, I have recently returned from my 4th visit to Amsterdam in three years, with my 5th trip already planned for September. I love the place and thought a blog post about the city was long overdue. I’ve visited the city in 35℃ heat and I’ve visited the city when the weather has been well below freezing. I’ve also been there when the weather was just in between, so I’m well positioned to judge the place in a variety of climates. 

Being from Liverpool, I’m lucky that we have an airport within the city. My luck is doubled with Easyjet having direct flights to the dutch capital three times a day. If you book a flight from Liverpool to Amsterdam a few months in advance you can get a return flight for as little as £60.

If you are visiting Amsterdam for the first time, be sure to take advantage of the train links within the city. You can get a train directly from Schiphol airport to Amsterdam Central for €5.10. Trains are very frequent and that particular journey only takes about 20 minutes.

As soon as you step out of Amsterdam Central Station the beauty of the city is hard to ignore, the architecture littered about is nothing short of stunning. The whole place is constantly buzzing with life, it never seems to sleep. I always get a homely feeling when I arrive. I feel safe and secure yet ready to explore at the same time, It’s a great feeling.

10881510_10153334926133973_3277764019160518880_nI have never visited a place with an aura of creativity like Amsterdam, the place is alive with innovation. Wether you are a lover of music, film, writing, art or just about anything which requires a bit of imagination, this is your place.

I may be a film maker but I’m also am a fond lover of music, house music. Amsterdam has a massive list of events to set alight your senses! I was at Tomorrowland in 2012, we boarded a train to Belgium from Amsterdam Central. I also attended Dirty Dutch in 2014, a house event hosted by DJ Chuckie in the Heineken Music Hall. My recent visit was based around attending Sensation at the Amsterdam Arena, an event which started in Amsterdam 15 years ago and is now known around the world. If you love your house music like me then you need to have a look at the itinerary in Amsterdam, it is simply astonishing.

The city is very well known for its lenient approach to sex and drugs. However, there is much more to the place than that. From my experience, if you are in Amsterdam and you are enjoying yourself without harming anybody then you are allowed to do whatever you want. Personally I believe the whole world can learn from Amsterdam, and its approach to living. People urinate in the streets, so they place outdoor urinals around the city so people can do so. People like to smoke cannabis, so they let you do so in a regulated environment. A number of people died due to street drug dealers dealing dangerous drugs, what did they do? They didn’t hide away from it, they set up huge electronic boards advising you to stay safe. Amsterdam doesn’t hide away from the truth, it simply deals with it in the best way- unlike many other countries around Europe.

Wether you want to sit with your legs dangling over a canal and chill out, board a boat for a canal tour and enjoy a glass of champagne, visit historical sites such as the Anne Frank and Vincent Van Gogh museum, or wether you want to party until sunrise the city has something for you and everybody else.

I personally feel the best times to visit Amsterdam are late December, as close to Christmas as possible (the annual traditional Christmas tree in Dam Square is immense) or mid summer when the heat is perfect to sit outside near a canal and embrace the dutch culture.

Below I’ve made a list of a few things I would recommend doing whilst in Amsterdam:

– Eat a traditional dutch waffle, covered in nutella and strawberries.

– Enjoy a smoke near one of the canals on a nice day.

– Enjoy a canal boat tour.

– Visit the city near Christmas time (Take a warm coat and scarf).

– Take advantage of the city for its dance/house music.

– Take a tour of the Amsterdam Arena.

– Stroll around the city, take in the atmosphere.

– Visit the Red Light District at night, its buzzing!

– Check out the art galleries!

– Take plenty of photos.

– Visit the Magna Plaza shopping centre.

I’d love to hear about your experiences of Amsterdam, or Holland in general. Are my views similar to yours? What do you think about the place? Feel free to ask me any questions about my experiences!

Thanks for reading,

Paul Williams


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