Amsterdam offers an almost endless variety of accommodation options to suit every type of traveller. Whether you’re in town for a romantic weekend getaway, a business trip or a holiday of unbridled fun with friends, you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to sleeping in Amsterdam.
Most visitors to Amsterdam opt to stay at least two or three nights in the city: after all, there is too much to see to visit in just one day.
The demand for hotels in Amsterdam is always high, especially during the summer, the Easter and Christmas holidays and King’s Day. The advice is therefore to book well in advance of your travel dates in order to meet your needs and to be able to get the best rates offered by hoteliers.
Many young people, in order to save money, often choose to sleep in one of the many hostels in the city, as hotel prices in Amsterdam can be a little higher than the European average. If, on the other hand, you want to add a touch of authenticity to your stay, you can choose to stay in houseboats or flats.
Finding your way around Amsterdam ‘s neighbourhoods can be difficult, so here’s an interactive map highlighting all the best areas to stay.
The historic centre is the district where some of Amsterdam’s landmarks are located. If you choose to sleep in the centre of Amsterdam, you’ll be within walking distance of most of the main tourist attractions (such as the famous Dam Square), shopping areas (such as Kalvestraat or the De Bijenkorf shopping centre) and nightlife. In the historical centre, hotels abound and this is definitely the area where most tourists stay.
On the other hand, in the centre the rates will obviously be higher than in accommodation further away, but at least you won’t have to add the transport costs to get to the centre of Amsterdam, which are certainly not cheap.
The museum district is an excellent choice for those who like to be in contact with a vibrant cultural scene: during the day you won’t need public transport to visit the Rijkmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum or the Stedelijk, while at the same time the area is lively in the evening hours.
At night, tranquillity is assured, as the museum district is certainly not the heart of nightlife, but those who like to stay up late can take advantage of the excellent public transport and the numerous tram and bus stops in the area to reach Amsterdam’s nightlife areas in a few minutes (only 15 minutes by tram from Dam Square).
The museum district is therefore perfect for couples and families with children, bearing in mind that it is also home to one of the city’s largest parks, the Vondelpark, ideal for walks in the green.
However, it remains a very touristy district, which is why the prices here are also quite high.
Sleeping in the red light district might seem transgressive and unusual, but it is not: the De Wallen area is practically in the city centre, and during the day the atmosphere of the canals and houseboats is unique.
In the evening, the neighbourhood comes alive to the extreme: apart from the houses, there are plenty of clubs, bars, restaurants and coffeeshops. Sleeping in the red light district is therefore an ideal choice for those who enjoy uncompromising nightlife, while family travellers and those seeking peace and quiet would do well to head elsewhere.
The Jordaan district is the area immediately west of the centre and is among the most beautiful in Amsterdam, thanks to its residential and quiet atmosphere and the circle of canals that became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010. Staying in the Jordaan will allow you to get away from the more touristy area and come into close contact with the everyday life of the locals.
The district is mostly populated by families and students. During the summer and spring months, many events are organised where you can mingle with the locals and get a taste of city life. The Jordaan is also home to the Anne Frank House, the Tulip Museum and the now famous ‘9 shopping streets’, where you can shop like a real Amsterdam resident.
In the Jordaan district, hotels are mostly located along the Marnixstraat and Rozengracht streets. Compared to other parts of the city, you will not find many accommodations here, but those that do exist are still very characteristic and charming.
The Jordaan is the ideal neighbourhood for those who want to immerse themselves in the real Amsterdam life while staying out of the hustle and bustle but at the same time within easy reach of the main tourist attractions, perfect for families and those seeking peace and quiet.
De Pijp is Amsterdam’s multiethnic and multicultural district, located south of the historical centre and home to many immigrants, creative people and students. It is one of the liveliest neighbourhoods in the city, with many restaurants and bars. Consequently, in the evenings and at night it is very lively and therefore noisier than many other neighbourhoods.
From Monday to Saturday it hosts the famous Albert Cuypmarkt, an extremely interesting market where you can taste typical dishes and buy original souvenirs or vintage and second-hand clothing.
De Pijip is only a few kilometres from the centre of Amsterdam: you can reach Dam Square with a half-hour walk or a 20-minute tram ride.
The district offers larger and more spacious hotels than the centre and is perfect for groups of friends or young couples, less suitable for families with small children.
The Plantage district is located east of the centre of Amsterdam. Actually, not many tourists choose to stay there, as it is a residential area, where there are very few bars and restaurants. It is true, however, that it is an ideal place to spend a quiet night, being a peaceful neighbourhood away from the hustle and bustle of the centre and, above all, an area where hotel rates are much cheaper.
The Plantage is also an area full of green areas, parks and interesting activities. Here you will not be far from Waterlooplein with its famous flea market and you will also find the Museum of the Tropics, the zoo and the Hermitage Museum. Not far away are the green areas of Oosterpark and Flevopark.
It is undeniably further away from the city centre, so you will have to use the tram or metro to visit the city.
These recently developed and redeveloped districts offer excellent accommodation options, which are in no way inferior to more well-known hotels. Even though the more industrial scenery, buildings and large green areas might make you feel a bit removed from the alleys and canals of the historic centre, the high standard of accommodation will definitely make you consider these districts.
The district of Amsterdam Noord lies across the river Ij, behind Amsterdam Central Station. Amsterdam Noord is the modern, innovative and trendy heart of the Dutch capital. This area is also home to the EYE museum and the A’DAM tower, from which you can enjoy a spectacular view of the city.
Given the modernity of the buildings, the hotels here have much larger rooms compared to those in the city centre and the services are state-of-the-art, making it an ideal area for business travellers but in general for anyone who prefers facilities with all the comforts at affordable prices.
The remoteness from the centre is also perfectly compensated for by the efficiency of the means of transport; excellent tram links connect the docklands with the centre and the ferries connecting Amsterdam Noord with the Central Station are frequent, the journeys are pleasant and short. The metro line 52 has also recently been extended, making transfers even easier.