10 Quiet Places in Amsterdam to Escape the Crowds

by Christina Valhouli

10 Quiet Places in Amsterdam to Escape the Crowds

by Christina Valhouli

Amsterdam is one of the most charming cities in the world, with its fairytale-worthy landscape of canals, houseboats, and crooked townhomes. However, a trip here can be challenging due to the sheer number of tourists. Here are 10 places to beat the crowds in Amsterdam — no advance tickets needed.

Amsterdam is one of the most charming cities in the world, with its fairytale-worthy landscape of canals, houseboats, and crooked townhomes. However, a trip here can be challenging due to the sheer number of tourists. Here are 10 places to beat the crowds in Amsterdam — no advance tickets needed.

10
Amsterdam / Yasonya/iStock
Houseboat Museum
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The Houseboat Museum

The Houseboat Museum is just a five-minute walk from the Anne Frank House. Like many Dutch houseboats, it was originally a freighter and offers a glimpse into canal living. Visitors can see the cozy sleeping berth as well as the living room with its wood burning stove. On a nice day, spend some time on the deck and soak up the sights and sunshine.

The Houseboat Museum is just a five-minute walk from the Anne Frank House. Like many Dutch houseboats, it was originally a freighter and offers a glimpse into canal living. Visitors can see the cozy sleeping berth as well as the living room with its wood burning stove. On a nice day, spend some time on the deck and soak up the sights and sunshine.

Museum of Bags and Purses
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Museum of Bags and Purses

This 17th century townhouse features one of the largest collections of handbags and purses in the world, with more than 5,000 pieces. The oldest dates back to the 16th century, and it's a metal-framed bag made from goat’s skin. The permanent collection includes one of Margaret Thatcher’s handbags, the iconic Hermès Birkin bag, and a cupcake design from Judith Leiber. Be sure to check out the gift shop, where you can buy your own bag. 

This 17th century townhouse features one of the largest collections of handbags and purses in the world, with more than 5,000 pieces. The oldest dates back to the 16th century, and it's a metal-framed bag made from goat’s skin. The permanent collection includes one of Margaret Thatcher’s handbags, the iconic Hermès Birkin bag, and a cupcake design from Judith Leiber. Be sure to check out the gift shop, where you can buy your own bag. 

Geitenboerderij Ridammerhoeve
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Geitenboerderij Ridammerhoeve

Swap crowds for goats at Geitenboerderij Ridammerhoeve, an organic farm located on the southern edge of the city. Spend an afternoon feeding baby goats and admiring the cows and pigs. Tip: time your visit for goat yoga, which takes place on weekends. And, don't miss the on-site café serves, which serves goat milk-based ice cream along with coffee and lunch.

Swap crowds for goats at Geitenboerderij Ridammerhoeve, an organic farm located on the southern edge of the city. Spend an afternoon feeding baby goats and admiring the cows and pigs. Tip: time your visit for goat yoga, which takes place on weekends. And, don't miss the on-site café serves, which serves goat milk-based ice cream along with coffee and lunch.

Chocolátl
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Chocolátl

Although Amsterdam is more closely associated with pancakes than chocolate, Chocolátl is a must-see for education and sampling. The shop carries beautifully packaged single-estate chocolate from around the world.  The staff will guide you through tastings, and they'll let you sample a cacao pod, too. There’s also a tiny counter serving tea, coffee, and hot chocolate. 

Although Amsterdam is more closely associated with pancakes than chocolate, Chocolátl is a must-see for education and sampling. The shop carries beautifully packaged single-estate chocolate from around the world.  The staff will guide you through tastings, and they'll let you sample a cacao pod, too. There’s also a tiny counter serving tea, coffee, and hot chocolate. 

Hortus Botanicus
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Hortus Botanicus

Hortus Botanicus was established in 1638 as a place to grow medicinal herbs, and it's one of the oldest botanical gardens still in existence. Today, visitors can stroll among the same plants grown in the 17th century. Don’t miss carnivorous plants in the Three Climate Greenhouse, as well as the giant water lily that opens every night at dusk when in bloom.

Hortus Botanicus was established in 1638 as a place to grow medicinal herbs, and it's one of the oldest botanical gardens still in existence. Today, visitors can stroll among the same plants grown in the 17th century. Don’t miss carnivorous plants in the Three Climate Greenhouse, as well as the giant water lily that opens every night at dusk when in bloom.

Amsterdam Tulip Museum
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Amsterdam Tulip Museum

This small space is a combination retail store and museum. The basement highlights the tulip’s journey from the Himalayas to the Netherlands, along with Tulip Mania. The museum’s shop sells everything tulip related as well as bulbs to bring home and plant. The helpful staff will assist you in finding the right bulbs for your climate and customs regulations.

This small space is a combination retail store and museum. The basement highlights the tulip’s journey from the Himalayas to the Netherlands, along with Tulip Mania. The museum’s shop sells everything tulip related as well as bulbs to bring home and plant. The helpful staff will assist you in finding the right bulbs for your climate and customs regulations.

Pluk
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Concept Stores

Get a taste of contemporary Amsterdam at the city’s concept stores. X Bank is a hybrid art gallery and retail store and carries more than 180 Dutch labels. Then, there's Pluk, a charming café with Instagram-worthy desserts plus housewares. Additionally, the white-washed COTTONCAKE sells luxurious womenswear and features its own café where you can refuel with avocado toast and a latte.

Get a taste of contemporary Amsterdam at the city’s concept stores. X Bank is a hybrid art gallery and retail store and carries more than 180 Dutch labels. Then, there's Pluk, a charming café with Instagram-worthy desserts plus housewares. Additionally, the white-washed COTTONCAKE sells luxurious womenswear and features its own café where you can refuel with avocado toast and a latte.

Nooch Amsterdam
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Nooch

Take a break from pancakes and stroopwafels to indulge in Amsterdam’s superb Asian dining scene. Fou Fow Ramen is a low-key spot for noodkes, and there are a few locations around the city. A swankier choice is Nooch, which serves up Asian fusion dishes like dim sum, spring rolls along with cocktails served in crystal glasses.  

Take a break from pancakes and stroopwafels to indulge in Amsterdam’s superb Asian dining scene. Fou Fow Ramen is a low-key spot for noodkes, and there are a few locations around the city. A swankier choice is Nooch, which serves up Asian fusion dishes like dim sum, spring rolls along with cocktails served in crystal glasses.  

Our Lord in the Attic Museum
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Our Lord in the Attic Museum

Bordering the Red Light District, this museum looks like a typical townhouse from the exterior, but the attic is home to a hidden Catholic church. It dates back to 1663, when Catholics were forbidden to celebrate mass. Visitors can also tour the historic kitchen and bedrooms. Mass is still held in the church today.

Bordering the Red Light District, this museum looks like a typical townhouse from the exterior, but the attic is home to a hidden Catholic church. It dates back to 1663, when Catholics were forbidden to celebrate mass. Visitors can also tour the historic kitchen and bedrooms. Mass is still held in the church today.

Cuypers Library
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Cuypers Library

Although the Rijksmuseum is one of the most visited sights in Amsterdam, few visitors make it to the Cuypers Library there. It’s the largest and oldest art history library in the Netherlands, but its big draw is its beauty. The four story wall of books, along with the spiral staircase and domed ceiling, is visually stunning. The shelves are lined with catalogues, books and periodicals which have been collected since 1885. 

Although the Rijksmuseum is one of the most visited sights in Amsterdam, few visitors make it to the Cuypers Library there. It’s the largest and oldest art history library in the Netherlands, but its big draw is its beauty. The four story wall of books, along with the spiral staircase and domed ceiling, is visually stunning. The shelves are lined with catalogues, books and periodicals which have been collected since 1885. 

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