Read this post for free things to do in Amsterdam City Tour – Amsterdam On A Budget or What to do in Amsterdam on a budget.
The vibrant and artistic Dutch capital Amsterdam is attracting tourists from all over the world and therefore it tops in the list of worth visiting places in the world. It has wonderful photogenic canals, historic sites, world-class museums, colorful houses, flower markets, tulip gardens, famous night life, festivals and many endless activities. Travelling can get expensive, especially if you are traveling to popular tourist cities such as Amsterdam.
But there are plenty of things you can do to save some money while visiting Amsterdam that will make the trip less heavy on your wallet. If you are wanting to save some money on your next visit to the beautiful city of Amsterdam, then it is time to consider all the free activities there are in the city!
So let’s check out some beautiful free things to do in Amsterdam city tour. There are more than enough free activities that will keep you excited, busy and content during your visit.
From exploring the canals to visiting a park to finding hidden areas within the city, there are more than enough free experiences to keep you occupied. Evidently, visiting Amsterdam on a budget is not only very achievable but also very enjoyable.
HOLLAND / NETHERLANDS ITINERARY
- 2–3 days: Amsterdam
- 4th Day – Take a day trip to Zaanse Schans for an iconic Dutch windmills tour and Hoorn for a seaside port town.
- 5th day – Day trip to Haarlem and Keukenhof Tulip fields(seasonal).
- 6th day – Waterland (Edam/Volendam/Marken — day-trip from Amsterdam)
- 7–9 day, add: Rotterdam and Leiden (day-trip from Haarlem or Delft),
- or more overnight trips to towns north of Amsterdam – Giethoorn – a fairytale Dutch town with no cars policy – canals city (Alkmaar and Hoorn/Enkhuizen)
WHEN TO VISIT AMSTERDAM ? | Free Things To Do In Amsterdam City Tour – Amsterdam On A Budget
- Peak Season – JULY & AUGUST
- Spring Season – TULIPS BLOOMING FESTIVAL – APRIL TO JUNE
- Shoulder Season – SEPTEMBER TO NOVEMBER
- Off-Peak Season – DECEMBER TO MARCH – DEC to FEB can be snowy and rainy.
Free Things To Do In Amsterdam City Tour – Amsterdam On A Budget | What to do in Amsterdam
The most popular tourist city in the Netherlands is Amsterdam. As a result, there are always many people in the town, and the prices are inflated for almost everything, such as food, shopping, transportation, etc. To get away from the price inflation, I suggest going on a day trip or one day trip to a neighboring city that is more budget-friendly.
Now, it is time to show you all the fantastic, free things to experience in Amsterdam? Places to visit in Amsterdam for free or check out some of the best Instagrammable places in Amsterdam.
Go to a Park | Places to visit in Amsterdam on a budget
If you have ever been to Amsterdam, you know that it is pretty small once you start walking around it, and for a small city, it has a ton of parks! These parks are always full of tourists and locals enjoying the beauty of nature. The best part about visiting a park in Amsterdam is that it is 100% free! Since the weather is very unpredictable in Amsterdam, when the weather is nice and sunny, the parks are packed with people.
A Dutch favorite is going to a park to relax with friends and family. Many people bring baskets with food and host their own picnics, or they bring speakers to listen to music or a book to lie out in the sun and read. It is also trendy to just walk around the parks and admire the beauty of nature. The giant trees, little rivers, and hidden corners are yours to discover and make for a fun adventure.
The best parks in Amsterdam are:
- Vondelpark – This is the most popular and biggest park in Amsterdam. It is in Amsterdam West, just a 20-minute walk from the city center. The park is huge! It has wide bike paths for runners and bikers, tons of areas for sitting on the grass, and even 3 restaurants.
- Oosterpark is located in Amsterdam Oost and is a small but stunning Amsterdam beauty. Its location further from the city center makes it a less popular park and offers a more intimate experience.
- Westerpark – This is located in Amsterdam West and is another large park but much more prevalent among locals. There are way fewer tourists here with all the same beauty of Vondelpark.
Explore the canals | Places to visit in Amsterdam on a budget
The canals of Amsterdam are the absolute best part of the city. They are so beautiful, and every canal is different. You could spend hours exploring the thousands of canals in Amsterdam and never get bored. Exploring all the canals and seeing the picturesque houses is an experience every visitor of Amsterdam should do.
It is by far the most quintessential thing to do in the city and is free! You can even rent a houseboat in Amsterdam and can stay in the price of your hotel for some unique experience of canals.
The areas of Amsterdam with the most beautiful buildings and canals are:
- The Joordan – The Joordan is the most expensive area in Amsterdam. The whole neighborhood is surrounded by stunning buildings and picturesque canals. This is also where the narrowest house in Amsterdam is: Singel 7. Head here and take a photo; you will not believe your eyes.
- De Pijp – This area has fewer canals but all the same beauty of the Joordan. Walking around this area is less busy than the Joordan.
- Amsterdam Oost – Oost has very few tourists making it one of the best areas to explore! If you want to take some stunning photos with no one getting in your shot, this is the place to explore.
Make a Furry Dutch Friend | Places to visit in Amsterdam on a budget
If you are a cat or animal lover, I have the place for you! In Amsterdam, there is a floating catboat called Poezenboot. It is a sanctuary for all the homeless cats in Amsterdam. The best part about the catboat is that it is free to enter. Upon entrance, you can play with all the Dutch cats and have an interesting experience of entering a floating cat house on the canals.
Find the Secret Begijnhof | Places to visit in Amsterdam on a budget
If you love historical sites in old cities, heading to the hidden Begijnhof in Amsterdam is a must. This free courtyard is hidden within the buildings right in the city center. It is also the oldest courtyard in Amsterdam and holds a vibrant history. It is down a secret path, just a quick turn off the main shopping strip near Dam Square.
This hidden oasis is almost like stepping back in time! Here you will find the oldest house in Amsterdam and a historic church. This free activity offers a short getaway from the busy streets of Amsterdam!
Stroll through the Rijksmuseum GardenThe Rijksmuseum is one of the most famous and frequented museums in Amsterdam. Although visiting the museum costs money, you can still experience some of what this great museum has to offer by taking a walk through the free Rijksmuseum garden!
The garden is outdoors and is a staggering 14,500 m2. In this garden, you can view many artistic fountains, a children’s playground, beautiful flower beds, and even a Henry Moore art exhibition.
Window Shopping at a Street Market | Places to visit in Amsterdam on a budget
Street markets are in abundance all throughout Amsterdam, and they are full of fascinating sights. Firstly, there are many flowers stands with bright flowers of all different types and colors. I love looking at flowers and smelling their beautiful scent.
Secondly, Amsterdam markets always have fresh stroopwafel – a famous Dutch treat – stands that smell amazing! You can also watch at these stands how they make fresh stroopwafel from scratch. The markets in Amsterdam are also full of cute clothing, fresh fruits, and veggies, fish stands, and other miscellaneous object stands!
The best street markets in Amsterdam are:
- Albert Cupy
- IJ-Hallen Flea Market
- Ten Kate Markt
- Artplein Spui
Check out a Famous Bridge | Places to visit in Amsterdam on a budget
One of the most famous and photographed bridges in Amsterdam is called Magere Brug. It is a very cute bridge that crosses the Amstel River and has the authentic, old Amsterdam look. This is one of the most beautiful bridges in Amsterdam, especially at night.
When the sun goes down this bridge is lit up by hundreds of white lights making it a very beautiful and romantic sight. The legend on Magere Brug says that if you and your lover kiss on this bridge, your love will never end.
Head to the amazing Bloemenmarket | Places to visit in Amsterdam on a budget
Bloemenmarket is a world-famous flower market in Amsterdam’s city center. It is famous because it is the world’s only floating flower market! This site is super cool and unique in Amsterdam; walking around it is 100% free!
They sell tulip bulbs and other souvenirs here, but just walking through it and checking everything out is fun! This is also a great way to experience some Dutch culture as the Netherlands is famous for tulips, which is the market’s whole premise.
As you can see, there are a ton of free things to do in Amsterdam. If you are traveling on a budget, don’t worry about having anything to do in Amsterdam, as there are more than enough options!
How to commute inside Amsterdam? (Amsterdam City Tours)
- Bike as Amsterdam is famous for biking
- Boat tours due to numerous canals Taxi or Rental Car
- Public transport like buses, metro, ferries, and tram. If you are using public transport, then purchase OV-chipkaart which is applicable on all public transport.
Book some suggested City Tours In Amsterdam
- Buy your Amsterdam Public Transport ticket
- Purchase I am Amsterdam city card in advance
- Take some Heineken experience and click here know more details of this tour.
- Go for romantic 1.5 hour Evening cruise and click here to book in advance.
- You can also book small Canal Boat cruise.
- Book your City Canal cruise Ultimate tour
- Book Leidseplein Party Pub Crawl
Take guided Red light area tour and click here to book this tour.
Book nearby Day Trips from Amsterdam:
There are numerous day trips from Amsterdam which are recommended to do when visiting Amsterdam.
- Take a tour of Wind Mills in Dutch villages – hop on hop off tour and click here to book and know more details about this trip.
- Book this trip Volendam, Edam, and Windmills Tour from Amsterdam
- Click here to book your Zaanse Schans, Edam, Volendam & Marken Spanish Tour
- Why to take Day Trip to Giethoorn
- Click here to book Day trip to Bruges
SOME IMPORTANT FACTS AND USEFUL TIPS ON AMSTERDAM :
LANGUAGE – Though the official language is Dutch, many people understand English.
FESTIVALS – It hosts 300 festivals a year, but some of the most famous ones are
- Light Festival – Amsterdam City Center
- Christmas Markets – Throughout the city
- Tulip Day – Picking Garden on Dam Square
- Chinese New Year – Zeedijk
- King’s Day – Celebrated all over
- Vondelpark Open-Air Theater
CURRENCY – Euros.
HOW TO REACH AMSTERDAM | Free Things To Do In Amsterdam – Amsterdam On A Budget
- By Air. Schiphol International Airport is one of the world’s busiest and is 15 kilometers from the central city.
- Check your Flights Schedule or Book your flights to Amsterdam
- You can reach Amsterdam By Bus from nearby European cities.
- You can reach Amsterdam By Train – Europe has a good rail network, so Amsterdam’s train station is well connected with other European cities.
- Road/Self Drive
- By Water through Cruise as Amsterdam is famous port.
NEARBY COUNTRIES WHICH CAN BE VISITED FROM AMSTERDAM
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Samantha Karen is a guest writer for this free things to do in Amsterdam post on Travel with me 24 x 7 blog and is the founder of her travel bog Sam Sees World. She is a millennial traveler on a mission to seek the new and unknown so she can document her experiences and inspire others to travel this wondrous world. You can also follow her on Instagram and Pinterest.
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