Home Holiday logo
x From now on, our name is Booklidays. Read more about our name change.


I am-sterdam the place to be 

About half an hour from Noordwijk, you’ll find our capital Amsterdam. Amsterdam blooms, the economy and the city is still the undisputed cultural centre of the Netherlands with orchestras, ballet, theatre, museums and galleries. The new Amsterdam has a multicultural society where dozens of ethnic groups have found their place.  Amsterdam is mainly perfect for good food and drinks, shopping or relaxing in the Vondelpark. You’ll find a variety of clubs, discos, museums, theatres and more. The new library is more than worth a visit. If you love architecture, the centre next to the new residential islands Java and KNSM come highly recommended. In Amsterdam-Zuid, you’ll also find nice and trendy facilities. To discover Amsterdam, the bike is your perfect means of transportation. Due to its many canals, there are also plenty of water taxi’s these days and other hop-on hop-off boats. Taking in all those sights in an adventure on its own.   Over the past few decades, tourism has become an increasingly important part of the economy of Amsterdam. Annually, Amsterdam receives about four million visitors that find accommodation in more than 300 hotels. The hotels are very expensive, a good alternative for many tourists is to stay somewhere on the coast and combine this with a day on the beach.

Amsterdam has many museums

The Van Gogh Museum

On the Paulus Potterstraat 7 houses the largest collection of paintings by the famous Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh. Address: Paulus Potterstraat 7, 1071 CX Amsterdam. Phone: 020-5705200. More info: www.vangoghmuseum.nl.

Het Rijksmuseum 

Was officially opened in 1885. At that time, the building designed by Pierre Cuypers was controversial; nowadays it’s hard to image Amsterdam without it. After ten years of reconstruction, restoration and renovation, the Rijksmuseum has finally reopened its doors in 2013. For the first time in history, the museum underwent a total transformation of both the building and the presentation of its collection. A broad collection of national artefacts can be found here, amongst which many paintings by Rembrandt van Rijn. Address: Stadhouderskade 42, 1071 ZD Amsterdam. Phone: 020-6747000 More info: www.rijksmuseum.nl.

The National Maritime Museum Amsterdam 

Is completely renewed but still breathes history. It’s an amazing, tough building in the heart of Amsterdam. The museum shows how the sea determined Dutch culture. In stimulating, interactive exhibitions you’ll discover 500 years of maritime history for yourself. Outside, you’ll be able to visit a replica of the VOC-ship. Address: Adres Kattenburgerplein 1, 1018 KK Amsterdam. Phone: 020-5232222. More info: www.scheepvaartmuseum.nl.


Is a result from the NINT, the former technology museum. The five-floor building shaped like a ship is built on the IJtunnel and is a science centre. There’s no doubt you’ll experience a day full of adventure and understandable technology with your children. Address: Oosterdok 2, 1011 VC Amsterdam. Phone: 020-5313233. More info: www.e-nemo.nl.

The Anne Frank House 

Is a household word in Amsterdam and far outside it. Visit the house on the Prinsengracht where Anne Frank wrote her world-famous diary in the back of the house. Address: Prinsengracht 267, 1016 GV Amsterdam. Phone: 020-5567100. More info: www.annefrank.org.  

Short history Amsterdam

Amsterdam appears for the first time in written history in 1275. Her privileges were granted in the beginning of the 14th century. By the economical bloom, Amsterdam grew into the largest city in Holland. Around 1580, the population amounted to about thirty thousand. The 17th century is called the ‘Golden Age’, especially due to the existence of the VOC and the WIC. It was Amsterdam’s heyday. Wealth, power, culture and tolerance flourished in the city. In the first decades of the 17th century, the amount of artists increased immensely and there was an explosion of the art production and art trade in Amsterdam.

Due to the economical bloom, people had more money to spend on luxury things like art. In thirty years time, Amsterdam became a flourishing cultural city. Bredero, Vondel and P.C. Hooft wrote their famous poems there. Rembrandt and his pupils had their workshop there. Frans Hals and Johannes Vermeer also came from that age. Philosophers like Spinoza and Descartes put their thoughts about it on paper.

Through the North Sea canal of 1876, Amsterdam obtained a direct connection to the sea. In 1889, a proper railway connection originated by the opening of the Central Station. Amsterdam started participating in the European metropolitan architectural style, with theatres, museums, hotels and department stores. World War II left deep marks in the population of Amsterdam, especially amongst the Jewish people. The persecution of the Jews hit Amsterdam hard. The first raids took place on 22 February 1941 on the Waterlooplein. One way to escape the deportations was to go into hiding. A famous example is the Frank family that found refuge in ‘Het Achterhuis’ (the rear of the house). Daughter Anne wrote down her world-famous diary here before she, along with her family, was betrayed, deported and eventually murdered in Bergen-Belsen. After the war, the city faced the challenge of repairing its two most important sources of welfare, the port and Schiphol.