The Other Side to Amsterdam’s Nightlife

Posted by admin | Posted in Europe | Posted on 18-03-2011

Amsterdam in the Netherlands has been a centre of European culture for centuries. While its nightly attractions are most commonly associated with the Red Light district and ‘brown cafes’, the city’s nocturnal activities encompass a lot more than that.

Below are some of our favourite forms of evening entertainment for the capital city. For other ideas once you are there, pick up free copies of the English-language Amsterdam Weekly and the magazine NL 20 for current calendars of events.

Take a load off in one of the many cafes where you can enjoy food, drink, and watch the world go by. One of the most popular places to do this is the Cafe Grand on Rembrantsplein.

Check out the Leidseplein theatre district around Ness Street for shows. Classical music is represented by the Concertgebouw Orchestra and by the city’s opera company. Amsterdam also has two ballet companies considered world class in both the classical and modern styles. The Dutch National Ballet performs in the Muziektheater, while the Netherlands Dans Theater, based in The Hague, performs throughout Amsterdam.

Live music can be heard all over the city, with free performances during the summer in Amsterdam’s parks. Visit Amsterdam’s most famous jazz clubs: Bourbon Street Jazz and Blues Club at Eidsekruisstraat 6–8 and Bimhuis at Oude Schans 73–77.

If you’re planning to hang out in the bars and clubs, remember that, in Amsterdam, you must be eighteen or older to buy alcohol. For whisky enthusiasts, try De Stil, Spuistraat 326, with over a hundred different single malt whiskies. Similarly, for beer, go to De Wildman, Kolk 3 Nieuwezijds. And, if you simply have to keep up with your home sports team even while on holiday, go to the Satellite Sports Café, Leidseplein 11, with fifteen television screens showing sporting events from all over the world.

The clubs of Amsterdam open between 10 PM and 11 PM; they close at 4 AM on weeknights and 5 AM on weekends. Dress to impress — no jeans. In the Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal neighborhood, try The Getaway, which is hip, happening, always full of people, and offers great cheap food. Nearby are the trendy Seymour Lounge and the hip Club NL — both host funky DJs for dancing to cutting-edge music.

Try a few clubs in other Amsterdam neighborhoods. Go to the Paradiso, Weteringschans 6–8, for great dancing. The Melkweg, Lijnbaansgracht 234, may seem slow on a weeknight, but the place really hops on weekends. Escape, on Rembrandtplein, has big name DJs, while Club More at Rozengracht 133, is very exclusive.

For a different type of nightlife, visit some of the casinos. There’s one downtown open every day from 1:30 PM to 3 AM near Leidseplein at Max Euweplein 62, and another at Terminal West in the Schiphol Airport that’s open every day from 6 AM to 7:30 PM (!).

Amsterdam is also a very romantic city. Otherwise known as ‘Venice of the North’, sparkling lights and canals will enchant and sweep you and your partner off your feet. This post was written by Nadine Hallak, Travel Expert at leading flights deals website where you can find great prices on flights to Amsterdam.

Photo Credits:  Dumbfunk | kareny13 | Ben | fede_gen88

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