Onepager website 'handmade in amsterdam' for tourist and visitor interested in the social city.


down to earth tips by genuine locals

| holiday . trip | tourist . visitor . family | short stay | expat . student |

Amsterdam has been thoroughly gentrified over the last 20 years. Prices for housing, services and dining did raise steeply, especially in the old 'labourer neighbourhoods'. Despite this, the beautiful city of Amsterdam offers many opportunities to experience awesomeness at low cost or for free.

that's what this website is about: Amsterdam cheap, not cheap.

Amsterdam is small in size, liberal at heart and friendly as a basic attitude. Eating out with a glass of wine is expensive compared to Berlin or Prague, visiting a club with 'adult entertainment' may drive you bankrupt on your first night out. Thus browsing this website can be a good deal for everyone visiting Amsterda. This website is handmade in Amsterdam, tips and opinions are biased on a personal, not commercial base. All links bring you to original websites, no booking agency, trip advisor & Co. Enjoy!

been there, done that & something's missing? : connect!

individually tailored recommandations

Unsecure what to book in advance? | Advisor websites send you to things everybody goes?

Send a short mail with 7 keywords describing your background, expectations, wishes and no-goes than we'll see what we can do for you. *this is not an app*

online communication, payment in advance

be extremely careful when booking with a private person via online communication. Pictures, a nice Linked-In profile, scanned ID's, that all can be faked.

Ask for an Amsterdam landline phone-number (+3120.....), ask for photo's per mail and check details like date and camera-brand, ask for an email from a controlable adress like an employer, make a viewing per Skype etc.

Eventually you can order an on-the-spot check from us.

where to stay in amsterdam on a budget

In holiday seasons prices for "cheap" hotel double room start around € 90,00. Basic advise is to come during week-days and/or in low season monthes that are not too cold & wet: from mid of March, April, May, and end of August, September till beginning of October. When you come in a small group or with children, have a look at an appartment or studio. Being able to prepare meals yourself is a big advantage. Here some individual picks choosen from a reasoning perspective, not a specific recommandation.


Hostels are cheap when staying in a 16 bed dormitory. In Amsterdam the locations are awesome. Try an IYHF Stay Okay Youth Hostel.

Vondelpark, Zandpad 5,1054 GA
Stadsdoelen, Kloveniersburgswal 97, 10011 KB
Zeeburg, Timorplein 21, 1094 CC (our fav)

Shelter Jordans | Bloemstraat 179, 1016 LA.

urbanCocoMama | Westeinde 18, 1017 ZP

new WOW Artist Space & Hostel, in outer neighbourhood Bos & Lommer, Wiltzanghlaan 60, 1061 HC

Lucky Lake Hostel Vinkeveen is a 20 min drive from Amsterdam, Vinkenkade 75.


casa 400 | +31 20 6651171 | eerste ringdijkstraat 4, 1097 bc amsterdam, neigbourhood Amstelkwartier| http:// 

volkshotel | +31 20 2612100 | wibautstraat 150, 1091 gr amsterdam, neigbourhood Amstelkwartier |

hotel not hotel | +31 20 8204538 | Piri Reisplein 34, 1057 amsterdam, neigbourhood kinkerbuurt| 
west side inn 
 my home 
 flying pig uptown 
hotel abba  
 citizen m 
 hans brinker 
 st Christopher's 


Most appartments offered via Craigslist, Airbnb and other online platforms are expensive and run by professionals. Be aware that 'sharing economy' does not fit here: profits go to the famous '1 %'. Many house-owners with a too heavy mortgage try to ease the pain by renting out their appartment. Try to find original Dutch bed & breakfast websites or ask the official Amsterdam Tourist Information VVV. "Bed & Breakfast" is a long known concept in Europe to offer a sleeping room in a normal household to visitors from abroad.


Utmost romantic and "born-to-be-wild" experience. Not recommended with young children.

Most are sadly over-priced, but in general it's cheaper to live in an appartment. Negociate with the owner, there are now so many boats on offer, that you often have a choice.

Camping Sites

The Dutch are champion campers as a life-style. True campers recognise each other by the brand of their tent. A caravan is for softies.

That means a camping site can be a good alternative for bricks & mortel. Most sites offer cabins.

Bed and Breakfast

"Bed & Breakfast" is a long known concept in Europe to offer a sleeping room in a normal household to visitors from abroad. "Bed & breakfast" originally is a sleeping room in a household, where shower, toilet and breakfast table are being shared with the family. In Amsterdam usually you'll get a studio, labeled b&b for tax-reasons.

Deep-browsing for individual websites can be worthwhile.

transport & parking in amsterdam | low cost

low cost parking locations in amsterdam

P & R public parking terrains along the highway-ring of amsterdam.

Park your car at a subisdized, low fee of only €1 or €8 per 24 hours when you continue your journey into the city per public transport. You have to show the used public tansport tickets when returning at the parking lot.

Public Transport Amsterdam airport, region (Alkmaar, Haarlem, Leiden) :


Public Transport Amsterdam centre :

TRAM & METRO (subway)

tram lines - tickets - routes

Public Transport Amsterdam, Volendam, Marken : BUS

Bike Rental & Buy

Biking is a stressy way of transport in Amsterdam when you're not living for longer than 2 years in the city.

Visitors should not, we repeat, should not rent a bike that does not look like a rental bike unless you're very experienced in bike-riding in the following cities: Berlin, Beijing, London or New York.

Car Sharing

Amsterdam is a pioneer in car- and bike sharing. The "Witte Fietsen Plan" and the "Witkar Projekt" are dating back to the early 70s.

Car Stop, Hiking

As a general rule hiking is safe in The Netherlands, in cars with Dutch numberplates (yellow with black numbers). Be cautious in the normal way like: women do not get in a man-only car or: when it doesn't feel safe, for whatever reason, even for no rreason, don't get in the car.

Electric car charging is free all over Amsterdam as a public service, financed by Amsterdam citizens using the cities' democraticly managed tax paying system (democratic shared economy). The last 7 years, over 1500 charging stations have been placed along roads and at parking lots.

events festivals parties sports religious 2017

Amsterdam global village.

Amsterdam is a global capital with a village mentality. If you'd like to explore the social city, the sharing mentality, breath in the unique 'we are family' atmosphere, start strolling and mingle.

Heineken Rowing Regatta

MARCH 11 & 12 | Amstel River. The Clubhouse of Amsterdams' famous rowing club NEREUS at Amsteldijk is center of ceremonies. Here you can have a good time (and beer), whilst on the river freshmen row their first official match and savvied seniors demonstrate how they've survived wintertime.

Stille Omgang | Silent Procession

In the night of MARCH 18 to 19 catholic people from all over the netherlands walk silently along the spot where in 1345 a miracle happened. As the story goes, this was the most busy night in the red light district.

Head of the River Amstel

MARCH 18 & 19 | Rowing Races on Amstel River for all ages. Opening of Dutch Competition Rowing Season. An 8 km course from Amsterdam, Nieuwe Amstelbrug between Ceintuurbaan and Ruyschstraat to pittoresque Ouderkerk aan de Amstel. Watch out for madly dressed supporters on bikes that only have eyes for their team.

Monthly Flea Market

IJ-Hallen | March 11,12 | April 1,2 | Europe's largest fleamarket, flocked with professionals and amateurs selling. In wintertime inside the industrial former shipyard halls of NDSM. It takes most of the day, travelling from Amsterdam city center. Free Parking. 

Location : Papaverweg 50, 1032 KJ Amsterdam

Tulip Fields

Mid of March - Mid of May Take a train or bus in the direction of the seaside, to villages named Noordwijk (close to Leiden), or Voorhout (close to Haarlem). In springtime the flower bulb region is an amazing feast of colors. Once there, rent a bike.

Kings (Queens) Day

APRIL 27 | Kings' (formerly Queens)' Day or Koninginnedag is a traditional Dutch citizens' festival to celebrate the Queens Birthday, since 2014 Kings' Day. Amsterdam becomes one big garage sale with semi-professional bargainers on both sides, aged 5 till 105. Vondelpak is for kids. A public party with 1 million smiling friends. Wear orange.

Remembrance Day

May 4th | Commemorations to remember cruelties and victims of the 1933-1945 German Nazi Regime, their supporters and the very small, very brave resistance movement in the Netherlands. We also remember more recent military conflicts and peacekeeping operations. Central ceremony 'Dodenherdenking' or 'Remembrance of the Dead' at Dam Square. Special ceremony at Homomonument, Westerkerk. Please hold and be silent with us two minutes from 20:00 - 20:02 pm.

Liberation Day

May 5th | Concerts, festivals and parties around town to commemorate the end of the German Occupation during World War II in The Netherlands. The biggest festival 'Het Vrije Westen' is free for visitors, thanks to many, mainly private, sponsors. It will take place in Westerpark from 11:00 am - 23:00 pm. A variety of Freedom Meals and Guided Tours will be organised.

Ascension Day

The Catholic Religion offers great stories of events taken place over 2000 years ago. Some are still annually celebrated, supported by the state with a public holiday. Very well known is Christmas, another event is Christ' Ascension, when catholics partie to remember one of their central religious heroes floated to heaven. For NDSM Werf a reason to organise the Hemeltjelief (best dubbed as OMG') Festival, open for al .

Rolling Kitchens | Food Truck Festival | 10th Edition

MAY 24 - 28 | Long Holiday Edition. From elegant deli carts to eccentric bbq trucks, this is the world wide pioneering food truck festival initiated by three best friends. Free entry.

Location : Westergasfabriek

Open Garden Days

June 16,17,18 | Anual opportunity for garden lovers to stroll into the city’s private green oases, formal parterres, flowering plants and remarkable garden houses and ornaments. Both classical and contemporary gardens can be visited from 10 am to 5 pm.

Gay Pride Festival | Canal Parade

JULY 29 - AUGUST 6 | Gay Pride Festival all over Town, with fun and celebration parties and more serious things to do. Saturday August 5th  14:00 - 17:00 Canal Parade with boats through Prinsengracht.

Dam to Dam Run

SEPTEMBER 16, 17 | 35.000 citizens run from Zaandam to Amsterdam. Participate or support,

Amsterdam Marathon

October 15 | Annual running event ranking alongside races in Boston, New York, Paris and Berlin. Elite runners from all over the world as well as thousands of ambitious amateurs participate. Start and finish at Olympic Stadium.

Tipps Amsterdam

Webseite auf Deutsch

Saint Nicholas Arrival Parade

November 12 | Amstel River, Herengracht (boat tour), Scheepvaartmuseum, Waterlooplein, Rembrandtplein, Dam Square | Don't let yourself be fooled by marketing tech - Santa Claus hasn't been invented by Coca-Cola but is a cultural heritage based in Europe. A melting pot of ages old regional rural and cultural traditions, mixed with catholic religion/organisation  narative. Elements can be found in Switzerland / Germany / The Netherlands.

Amsterdam Light Festival

An initiative from Amsterdam headquartered company Philips, in collaboration with famous Amsterdam Light Artist Titia Ex and the City of Amsterdam. A light festival with installations of renowed international artists and others along Amstel River and it's surroundings takes place the dark monthes of December and January

Things to do in winter time

Simple website with top 10 things to do in winter time on a low budget.

things to do and see in amsterdam


only if you did that before. when you stay longer, buy a bad looking stadtfiets for around €150,00 in a fietsenwinkel of at the fietsenmaker. Buying at the street for € 25,00 means you get a stolen bike. Amsterdam inhabitants are not lucky with that. Buy good locks and lock the bike-frame always to a non moveable object

Ferry Boats IJ-river

Behind Central Station you'll find the landing-docks for all ferries over IJ-river. As there is no tunnel for bikers and pedestrians, These are being run as a communal service, that means sharing economy oldschool, paid by Amsterdam inhabitants, free for all! 

Borders of Amstel River

The river that gave Amsterdam it's name, amstel re damme or dike in amstelriver is upstream from the famous Amstel Hotel, where Weesperzijde starts, a beautiful trip to stroll or bike. All the way to Ouderkerk is an hour bike-drive, cross the Bridge there and come back on the other side, passing a windmill and statue of Rembrandt

Canal Belt

Defenitely the most romantic and emotional part of Amsterdam. It's history from mainstream Dutch perspective tells about Golden Age, pioneering entrepeneurship and maritime heroes. Another perspective tells about colonialism and slavery. It's worth the money to make a canal boat tour. Otherwise put on your walking shoes and go.

Roof of Nemo

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Public Library

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Serious Warning

Do not buy "stuff" on the street, may the deal sound great, and the dealer look really nice and trustworthy, do not buy stuff on the street. For wonderware like weed, hash, pot, you go to a "coffee-shop". It's allowed to buy small amounts here.

If you get in serious trouble, no matter why, no matter because you did something stupid, call the police. Urgency: dial 112, say name and street.

Not urgent:

dial 0031 34 357 8844

Red Light District

Against the background of human trafficking and exploitation, the City of Amsterdam Council has been closing down a lot of places in the sex-work-industry. The famous Red Light District still exists, but in a lean way. Mind this is the oldest part of Amsterdam and worth a visit anyway.

Weed, Hash, Pot

Cheapest place in Europe to buy weed, hash, pot. Buy it in official "coffee-shops", smoke it in the shops as much as possible. It's not allowed to drive stoned. If something goes wrong - call the police or an ambulance, dial 112 -  be honest, do not lie about what you did consume.

Permanent Fleamarket

Waterlooplein | Go there on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday. With bad weather there won't be much daghandel stuff brought in on that paricular day. Many shop-a-like secondhand boots. Negotiating as a tourist will be difficult. If the asked price is much too high, just friendly say no and walk away. Otherwise don't bid too deep under the asked price and negotiate quick.

Amsterdam Yard Sale

A thriving vintage second hand stuff exchange community on Facebook where only the contacting is online. Further steps all offline - in real life.

 | free & low budget cultural amsterdam

 | theatre . film . concert . dance . literature . club

Going Out | 'Uitkrant' dubbed Outpaper

Uitkrant is a magazine where all cultural things to do in Amsterdam in a month are being listed. Non commercial, public funded.From high-end opera and experimental fringe theatre to children activities with a cultural touch.

The Netherlands, by the way, has a striving scene for children's and youth theatre and film.

All cultural events today & tomorrow app

Splendid app when you're visiting Amsterdam for a few days and for the spontaneous ones. All cultural events listed that are on today, tomorrow, the coming week-end.

Last Minute Tickets for fringe & posh theatres

Most of the cultural events in The Netherlands, and in Amsterdam, are being partly subsidised with public money from state, province, city or fund. This makes that prices differ from f.i. the United States and you could try your luck at the evening ticket shops at the theatres. Above you'll find a button for the Central Ticket Shop for all reduced tickets,  daily from 10:00 am on, max. 2 tickets.

Tip . Vondelpark Theatre

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More to come


Tip . Claim the Stage

The Original Mezrab Storytelling Night. Every third Friday of the month. Mom makes soup. | Veemkade 576, 1019 BL Amsterdam


The old city of Amsterdam, protected as Unesco World Heritage Site, is unique. When you stay longer than a week, other parts of town should be considered a stroll too. A tour along buildings of 19th century Star architect Van Gendt - Concertgebouw, Stadschouwburg, Burgerziekenhuis, IJsbreker, Spiegelpanden. Or Rivierenbuurt with 'Amsterdam School' Art Deco Design, Muziekgebouw aan het IJ, EYE building, KNSM-Eiland.

Tip . Film Museum EYE

Opposite of the back of Central Station you see a new Amsterdam landmark building, the Film Museum EYE. From the balconies you have a splendid view on other architectural landmarks, old and new.

Zaanse Schans

Early Industrial SIte with windmills along river the Zaan, 30 minutes from Amsterdam. 

Cheese Markets

Gouda, Old Amsterdam, Beemster. names you know from cheese and we know as names of dutch cities. Two towns still have a vivid cheese market, worth a visit: Alkmaar and Gouda.30 minutes trip by train.

Borders of IJsselmeer

Biketrip crossing IJ-river per ferry from Central Station or over the bridges in Zeeburg. Head for Durgerdam.

Rowing and swimming at Botshol, Waverveen

good food in amsterdam . nice price

Chinese Restaurants

In the old sailor entertainment district "De Wallen", Close to Central Station, is a very small China Town. Check out the uncosy looking places, or for instance Kam Yin, Warmoesstraat 6 or Win Kee, Zeedijk 76.

Indonesian Restaurants

Westergasfabriek | Westerpark

Frikandel Falaffel Döner Shoarma

Wok to Walk


Café Getto


Pannekoeken are not exactly the same like pancakes, we also say. We say a pannekoek is a must. Famous variations are sweet 'n salty, like apples, bacon, syrup.

Café De Schutter

Students, loud, cosy, cheap, Voetboogsteeg


Leidseplein. UK concept, fresh cooked noodles, meat and vegetables in open kitchen. Dinning on long wooden tables sitting on benches. Often quick service, sometimes some waiting.

Friet | Patat

Learn how to cook Patat, Friet, or Pommes Frites, Patatas from true Potatoes. With a salad and home made mayoniase it is not sooo bad for your health....

Mana Mana

Hemonystraat 66

Wednesday Thursday Friday

Must Eat Snacks

 haring bitterballen
 sate loempia
 borrelnootjes krentebol
gele vla chocoladevla
 hagelslag muisjes
 pindakaas kaas

Snackbar aan 't IJ

Piet Hein Kade, Close to Albertt heijn on the waterfrond side

University Mensa

cool . hot spots . trend . typically amsterdam

Soccer in the park

In most bigger parts people make up pretty spontaneous teams that play europen style soccer, according the "streetsoccer or park rules"

Swimming & Sunbathing

IJsselmeer, Amstelriver close to office sky scrapers

Iceskating Jaap Eden IJsbaan

Named after an Amsterdam Ice Skating Champion from the 1920's (after that, not many Amsterdammers did so well in Ice-Skating, except for Ellie van den Brom) the Ice Skate Parcours at the East Part of the city is a great place to be.

Visit the Beach per Train

From Amsterdam Central Station a direct Train goes to Zandvoort, or "Amsterdam Beach" (don't say that loud in Zandvoort :))

Lectures & PhD Defend Ceremonies

Amsterdam University UvA organises lectures and PHD Defend Ceremonies are public by principle.


Public Rehearsal Concertgebouw Orchestra

Roof of Nemo

Awesome "please touch" science museum Nemo, close to central station, offers a free roofterrace. Take the bridge outside to walk up.

Oosterdok 2

Terrace Muziegebouw aan't IJ

Sky Terrace

Terrific  view from the SkyTerrace on the top-floor of Double Tree Hotel. Walk in, not too badly dressed, turn to the right and take an elevator to the top. Look for the terrace, order a € 5,50 french fries and sit like Paris Hilton.

Discount Cards


Friday Night Skate

Best Sunset Spots

Seeing the sun go down in autumn Amsterdam can be an awesome experience. The sky turns into a thousand shades of pink, and you can lie back and enjoy the iconic Amsterdam cityscape turn into a romantic movie scene - if you know where you can see it best!

Hacker Space

Nerds, tinkerers, thinkers, trying-it-outers, most male, some female, having fun in discovering by doing. Initiated, supported by Dutch Telecom Provider KPN / Xs4All

Social Wednesday Night.

Cheese on Daymarkets

Check neighbourhood day-markets like Dappermarkt,or Ten Catestraat Markt for good offers in cheese.

Weekend Amsterdam?

Get the best tips and trends here

Laundry Service

Was Salon or Wasserette

Not cheap, nor budget. Ask locals on the street in the neighbourhood were you live and check prices beforehand.

Take Care when Buying Wine

Wine is expensive when you're used to prices in Germany, Italy, France, Spain, Greece, Hungary, Austria and so forth.

We made bad experiences in buying wine in supermarkets.

public places & services | not touristic

City Halls

The main City Hall at Waterlooplein offers free wi-fi.

City-district halls offer free wi-fi, working seats, cheap coffee or soda's. Often you do not have to wait there as long as in the main city-hall.

Expatcenter Amsterdam

Official expat & highly skilled migrant services.

The Expatcenter provides a one-stop-shop service for international talent: companies and their highly skilled migrant employees, scientific researchers, international entrepreneurs and international graduates.

The Expatcenter helps with residence and work permits, startup visa, registration with the municipality, the 30% tax ruling and many other official matters.

Amsterdam Salon

International network combining Amsterdam’s bustling cultural life with social events and professional and cultural exchange.

Membership is free, members purchase tickets per event.

Swimming Pools

Public Library

An awesome concept outside and inside. A piano free to play, lots of computers free to use and books, books, books. Offered by the Municipality of Amsterdam. At the top is a "snel-restaurant" with OK food and a terrace with great view.

More Shared Economy Services in Amsterdam

To come


This long street in Amsterdam Noord is a trip through a piece of Holland that one doesn't experience much. Normal people live in Disney World alike houses.

Look for your princess or prince.

Sounds under the Bridge

Underneath the bridge in front of Muziekgebouw aan't IJ an Artist created a sound world.

Tennis in Oosterpark

Weekly Markets

 Monday Lapjesmarkt Westerstraat
 Monday Fleamarket Noordermarkt
 Monday Plantjesmarkt Amstelveld
 SaturdayBiologische markt Noordermarkt en Nieuwmarkt 
 Saturday Weekmarkt Lindengracht, Jordaan

Kringloop Winkel

All over The Netherlands people can bring used, but usable stuff to a "Kringloop WInkel" or Recycle Shop. Mostly run by volunteers and people supported in return-to-work programmes. In Amsterdam, inside the old rings.

 Rataplan Willem Roelofsstraat 2, 1062 JX
 Rataplan Slingelandtstraat 39, 1051 CG
 JuttersdokKerkstraat 354
 Juttersdok Zeeburgerpad 90
 De Lokatie Camperstraat 42
 De LokatieDistelweg 85 

Daily Markets

Each neighbourhood has a daily market, organised by the City council. Fresh vegetables, fish, cheese, clothes, flowers, diverse daily deals, pommes frites, loempia and loads of local atmosphere.

 Ten Katestraat 
 Albert Cuyp De Pijp
 Dappermarkt Oost
 Mosplein Noord
  Bos & Lommer
 Bloemenmarkt Centre