Reputed for its innovation and creativity, Amsterdam has been a magnet for hedonistic types since the days of Vermeer. This travel guide to Amsterdam will be your starting point to get to know the alternative side of the city.
It’s easy to get caught up in Amsterdam’s city centre. Lose yourself in a canal maze, duck into a smoky little coffeeshop or visit independent art galleries. From the club scene to the street, the city is a source of inspiration for stylish individuals, artists, and hipsters. Here, the alternative travel guide to Amsterdam with off the beaten path places to hang in:
A shopping area
De Negen Straatjes (the nine little streets) in Central Amsterdam is the area to blend with the hip and trendy crowd. A bunch of independent stores are mixed with prestigious brands such as Scotch & Soda. However, if you are looking for a flea market that gathers vintage stuff, the legendary Waterlooplein market is your place. With over 300 stalls, Waterlooplein is the oldest flea market in The Netherlands. Here, you can wander, look and possibly buy for hours.
A cultural venue
Located underneath a bridge that trails over Vondelpark, De Vondelbunker is a literally underground venue that stands inside a former atomic bunker built in 1947. This facility hosts exhibitions, live concerts and other events, that champion alternative culture in Amsterdam. Since Vondelbunker is a non-profit community project, run by volunteers, it relies on donations rather than entrance fees for its upkeep. Genre-wise, de Vondelbunker tends to focus on more experimental or politically-conscious art and music, hosting everything from avant-garde theatre to psychedelic rock gigs.
A place for eating
A former cinema built in the roaring 20’s now houses CT Coffee & Coconuts, a funky place to enjoy the buzzing energy of Amsterdam. The stunning art deco building has been lovingly converted into a hip, multi-level space with Scandinavian décor, and a relaxing atmosphere ideal for long, lazy brunches, afternoon drinks and stylish evenings. Much of the food is organic and locally sourced.
A veggie haven
Located in the heart of De Pijp, Manamana has become a place of pilgrimage for the city’s vegan and vegetarian crowd. This always-packed eatery offers a wonderful selection of modern Lebanese and Israeli dishes. For lunch, there are a variety of generously topped hummus plates and salads, while dinner brings baba ganoush, falafel, shakshuka and the famous “psychedelic cauliflower” with tahini, lemon, and garlic. Due to the limited space, reservations are advised.
Located just a stumble from Leidseplein, The Dolphins Coffeeshop is somewhat tacky designed in an oceanic theme, but that´s what makes it special. This is the place for anybody looking for a warm, friendly and relaxed coffeeshop to spend a lazy afternoon. The Dolphins has two floors to choose from and very friendly staff.
Sociëteit SEXYLAND is a conceptual club at the NDSM Wharf in Amsterdam-Noord that has 365 co-owners, each of whom puts on an annual event. As spots on Sexyland’s schedule are open to everyone, its monthly program is eclectic and often features events ranging from gangster rap nights to dinners in stroboscopic light. Sexyland aims to celebrate Amsterdam’s diverse cultural make-up, by providing space for a wide range of varied subjects and styles.
Here, the alternative travel guide to Amsterdam. Please, leave your comments below and share the article if you liked it. Follow the link to discover the alternative travel guide to Lisbon, Portugal.