by Lynn Kim Do


Amsterdam is THE perfect city. It’s every city I’ve seen, every liberal thought, every great part within all these cities gently placed together. Marijuana is legal, normal, celebrated, and embraced. Homosexuality is normal. Is beautiful. Prostitution, well hey, it has it’s own place here and regulated. The streets are clean. Like, really really clean. The trains (tram and bus, too) easy easy to navigate and reliable. Bikes are fun, decorated, and has their very own dedicated lanes. More than walkways, tbh. This list that I'm about to divulge is something that can all be accomplished in 2-3 days. It's fit for a couple, a group trip, or even a solo one. If you're only in Amsterdam for a weekend or a week, these ten things can fit perfectly within your own itinerary.

What you must do in Amsterdam:
1. Drink Heineken.
Drink it any chance you get because it's cheaper than water. And it's vacation so who cares if you wash down your morning eggs with a beer. I won't judge. If beer isn't your thing, Amsterdam is also known for their gin. Try a specialty gin and tonic cocktail! Or drink both. I did.

2. Visit the Van Gogh Museum!
I can not stress this enough. My experience and process of getting to know Van Gogh himself in his own country changed me. He is a brilliant man and totally crazy. Just my type, I guess. Tip: Get your ticket online so you don't have to wait in line. It will save you a ton of time, hassle, and get this...they take e-tickets!

3. Take the Canal Tour
There are over 1000 canals in Amsterdam. It pretty much makes up Amsterdam. It will be a sin not to take the Canal Tour to learn a little history and see the architecture of this gorgeous city. You can choose day tours or night tours. I booked mine by just googling it!
4. Now go see the Ritzjmuseum.
I wouldn't try to visit both museums in the same day. It's a LOT to take in! There's Van Gogh which took up most of my mind for the entire day when I went and then there's the Ritzjmuseum which is much larger! You must see the Rembrandt piece. Tip: Book this online, too! This is a very popular museum so the lines can get crazy!

5. Walk the Red Light District
C'mon, how do you go to Amsterdam and not see what the Red Light District is all about? It's actually very regulated and the Red Light District has shrunk in terms of size. There's also really great Chinese food nearby. LOL. I don't know why that was relevant but I find it ironic. Pictures are NOT allowed. But trust me, your eyes are more than enough for this particular experience.

6. Visit Anne Frank's Huis
Every single person in my generation has a core attachment to Anne Frank. From an early age when we were forced to read her diary even though it was really the most exciting book we've ever got our hand on at that age, we found something in her words we all could relate to. Being in the actual space that she was in for two years as she was in the brink of survival, now that's remarkable. Make sure you reserve a spot and a ticket online many days in advance!
7. Smoke at a Cannabis Coffeeshop
Here's a tip: Cafes are actually coffee shops. Coffeeshops are smoke shops that serve coffee, too. You really can't go wrong. I thoroughly enjoyed Dampkring. It has a NYC atmosphere, a cat that you can pet while you're high af, and pretty friendly staff.

8. Eat French Fries at Vlaams Friteshuis Vleminckx
I am a french fries fanatic and this place is number one for a reason. IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE!  They have so many sauce choices. I decided to go with the Samurai sauce. It's fried perfectly, crunchy, golden, and honestly, divine. You won't regret it.

9. Have a Waffle.
Or have 9 of them. Every single step you make around this city will be teased with some sort of waffle nearby. From stooplewaffles to thick waffles with whatever toppings your heart desire, how can anyone escape from it? I mean, why would you want to escape from it?

10. Visit the Cheese Museum.
Okay so I know that half of this list is food, but why travel if you're not going to explore the exquisite cuisines of another nation or culture? That's my very long-winded motto anyway. Do yourself a favor and visit The Cheese Museum. It's right in the Joordan Neighborhood (very hip!). There are plenty of cheese samples. Let me repeat: THERE WILL BE PLENTY OF CHEESE SAMPLES.
Bonus (more food, pretty much):
If you want a full Dutch meal experience, you must visit The Pantry. It is quaint and they have prixe fix menus so you can try a little of everything. We were so happy to run into this place. Other restaurants you must try when in Amsterdam: Pikoteo for tapas, Madam, Gs for Brunch, Foodhallen, Merkelbach for outdoor dining, Guts and Glory, Oriental City, and De Kas.

Visuals by Pedro Morales & My Personal Roll