Free Things To Do In Amsterdam – Amsterdam On A Budget + Netherlands Itinerary 10 Days

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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.

Free Things To Do In Amsterdam City Tour - 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! Free Things To Do In Amsterdam City Tour - Amsterdam On A Budget

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. 

Visiting Paris too – then check Paris itinerary 5 days


  • 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 

Weather Guide on Amsterdam

  • Peak Season – JULY & AUGUST
  • Shoulder Season – SEPTEMBER TO NOVEMBER 
  • Off-Peak Season – DECEMBER TO MARCH – DEC to FEB can be snowy and rainy.

WHERE TO STAY IN AMSTERDAM? | Free Things To Do In Amsterdam City Tour – Amsterdam On A Budget

Amsterdam has many luxury and budget options to stay in because it is a favorite tourist destination in the world. For budget travelers, you can always check budget-friendly hostels in Amsterdam or if you want a hotel stay then check some options given below. 

Mid Range Stay Options

Luxury Stay Options

Budget – Friendly Stay Options

Perfect Comfort Stay at Holiday Inn Al Barsha Dubai

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.

free things to do in Amsterdam, Netherlands

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

free things to do in Amsterdam, Netherlands

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

free things to do in Amsterdam, Netherlands

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
  • Westerstraat
  • Noordrmarkt
  • 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

free things to do in Amsterdam, Netherlands

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

Book nearby Day Trips from Amsterdam:

There are numerous day trips from Amsterdam which are recommended to do when visiting 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


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. 


Belgium, Germany, UK, and France.

Loved it…. Then pin it….. Things To Do In Amsterdam For Free

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. 

Watch this – Netherlands Itinerary 7 days

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  1. Great tips here & reminded me of how beautiful Amsterdam is! Whenever I visit a city I love to just walk around & explore. Costs nothing & you can get a sense of the different neighbourhoods & go off the usual tourist path. And of course walking is always free! Thanks for sharing.

  2. My husband and I loved our short visit to Amsterdam a few years ago. We only wished we had more than 3 days. I love strolling through the historic neighborhoods and peeking through the gates to see what we could see in the courtyards and gardens. I wish I had known about the hidden Begijnhof. It sounds like the perfect spot to explore that area. Thanks for sharing all this info.

  3. Oh my Amsterdam. Its a rather interesting, intriguing city isn’t it? You’re right, being a tourist spot, all prices are indeed inflated. So, thanks for this guide on the free things to do. OMG, I didn’t know about the floating cat sanctuary… I missed it. That gives another reason to head there. Oh yeah and I hadn’t known the concept of Begijnhof when I was in Amsterdam last time and I missed that too!

    1. Yes Bhushavali, sometimes offbeat and unique places in tourist locations are great thing to do instead of spending fortunes. Thanks for finding some new places for your next visit to Amsterdam.

  4. Amsterdam is like bang just 2 hours away, but still haven’t been able to plan a trip that side. But now i am definitely heading out there soon. Found it quite interesting to read that there are a plenty of free things to do in Amsterdam. And all the canals, look so photogenic. It would be quite an experience biking through Amsterdam, and exploring the different canals.

    1. It is great that you find this post useful and as Amsterdam is 2 hours away from you place, it would be great to visit soon.

  5. I used to be a regular in Amsterdam when my brother lived there, and so did many of these free things. I didn’t get to visit Westerpark however, so that’s one to see for next time. I do love markets, especially flower markets too, but I don’t think I could pass one without buying some!

  6. I really enjoy picnics, so one in Amsterdam is on my list. And that floating cat house sounds like a must-visit. Am going to enjoy moving around in boats for we don’t find canals in India, I mean in cities.

  7. I am bookmarking this blog. I would rather hang around the canals and gardens than any other mainstream touristy places. Really cool and informative post.

  8. These are brilliant ideas! This is very helpful for a budget traveler like me. Happy to know that there are a lot of things to do and see in Amsterdam at no cost. So excited to visit their street market and explore the canals.

  9. Amsterdam seems like such a beautiful city. I have yet to visit but there seems like there is a ton to do especially on a budget, which is so great. I look forward to finding that hidden courtyard.

  10. You have covered pretty much everything in the post about Amsterdam. I would like to explore the city on foot. I love strolling around in a new city. And, flower markets simply attracts me in any city. Loved the complete guide. Quite helpful for sure

  11. I did not fall in love with Amsterdam and I think one of the reasons was because I found it so expensive. Now I wish I had had this list!
    I cannot believe I missed the floating catboat Poezenboot or the lovely flower market! Oh well, I will just have to go again 😀

    1. Yes Anna, sometimes free tips are very helpful. It would be great that you do all those things which you left previously.

  12. Amsterdam is such a beautiful, unique city. It definitely is overrun by tourism as of late, so it’s always great when you can find authentic, yet also free things to explore in the city. My favorite suggestions of yours was going to the flower market and exploring some parks within the city. I haven’t biked around the city yet, but I’m excited to try that out the next time I visit.

  13. I love the fact that I stumbled upon this article because as a matter of fact I am going to Amsterdam this fall. This is so helpful as I seldom have time to sift through information and make my own itinerary. I love guides like these as they help me plan what to see and do. I love your mid-range stay options and the Nova Apartments Amsterdam is something I am considering. As for the street markets, I love this and I will make sure to add Noordrmarkt as well as Artplein Spui to my list.

    1. It is great you loved some of the mentioned options. Woud love to know how was your trip after your return.

  14. Being Dutch, I’ve visited Amsterdam a couple of times. I totally agree with your tips on how to spend time in Amsterdam on a budget! There is so much to see an do in the city that doesn’t cost a thing, it will keep you busy for at least a couple of days.

  15. Wow what a incredible roundup of a list! These photos are so amazing too. I’ve always wanted to visit!

  16. Amsterdam is one of those places we always talk about going but haven’t gotten to yet. I think the kids would love it because it still has water, which is always fascinating.

  17. I can’t believe I haven’t been in Amsterdam yet! I have been at Schiphol airport so many time. This is a great list of activities, and I would definitely try some of these in there. Hopefully I get to visit soon! I know something about people bicycling there like crazy, so I guess I would like to try that at least.

  18. I’d love to visit Amsterdam. I had heard that it is a bit too full of tourists these days (and the government is trying to tempt people to other areas nearby) but your photos make it look really calm!

    Did you wake up really early in the morning, or was it not as crowded as most people say?

  19. I can’t believe I haven’t been to Amsterdam yet. Would love to see all the canals. Great video!

  20. The canals in Amsterdam are so beautiful. I wish I lived in one of those iconic gingerbread looking houses. I figured Amsterdam would be touristy, so taking your suggestion of visiting a neighboring city might be more pleasant. I would like to see Westerpark A large park that is popular among the locals must mean that it’s a good one!

    1. Yes Candy, sometimes visiting nearby city for a very famous tourist city is always a wise idea to feel that place peacefully

    1. Amsterdam is a beautiful place but the hotels are very expensive. To book one we had to plan months before the trip. The best thing I like there is the canal cruise.

  21. Great summary! I was in Amsterdam in Feb and really liked it. I would like to visit again when it’s a bit warmer. This guide is great!

  22. I loved the list of the free things to do in Amsterdam. I am planning to backpack The Netherlands soon, and I am surely going to visit the Beginhof and learn about the lives of the women there. Also, the beautiful Bloemenmarkt is something I would not like to miss. Thanks so much for this list, Yukti.

  23. Great post for those visiting Amsterdam as it can be an expensive city. I was only there for one day, so definitely not enough time! Saving this for when I get to go back!

  24. I am always trying to do free things to do in this amazing city but I always land up spending loads. It’s not a cheap city by any means. But great tips here especially those on a budget or first timers.

  25. I visited Amsterdam many times and every time I visit, it has something new in store for me. It’s also a great city for budget travelers with a lot of free things to do. I did most of the activities you mentioned on this list and I think this is a great resource for people planning to visit for the first time.

  26. Being a budget traveller myself, I love all of your Free Things to do in Amsterdam. I’d definitely want to check out the floating cat sanctuary – what a great idea! Plus the hidden gardens would be fantastic. Of course you couldn’t go there without grabbing a nice coffee and wandering the canals.

  27. I like the canal cruise trip very much because it is very informative. To be honest, to cycle around is a realy good way to explore the area. The most exotic please is the china town, where I can find some real authentic Chinese food.

  28. Just a tiny adjustment: unless you’re native to the Amsterdam area, don’t drive in Amsterdam.
    If you’re a native, you know I don’t have to tell you that.
    Rent a bike, if you want to be adventurous in Amsterdam. Then read up on the road rules and severely reconsider. Amsterdam traffic is not what you are used to, believe me.

    1. Great tip. Thanks for sharing it. I too acknowledge for bikes as they are the most eco friendly way to move around any city.

  29. My husband and I are absolutely DYING to visit Amsterdam. I think I decided I wanted to go after reading and watching The Fault in Our Stars, and he just wants to go because it’s a cool place hehe. Thanks for sharing this, because we’re on a seriously tight budget!

  30. I caught a glimpse of Bloemenmarket when I visited last. Loved the vibe there and would definitely like to visit. Walking along the canals is indeed the best thing to do on a budget. There are so many sights to capture just by doing that. Am all for those parks too.

    1. Yes Ami, strolling along the canal must the most beautiful thing to do here and that too a free thing to do here.

  31. What a very thorough post! Amsterdam is a place I’ve wanted to go to, and now even more knowing there are lots of free things I could do. I like the idea of the street markets!

    1. Thanks for sharing. Amsterdam is one of my top destinations to visit and will definately need this list. Your pictures are amazing!

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