Sometimes you don’t need to travel the world for incredible experiences. In fact, sometimes they’re available in your own backyard. In cities like Amsterdam, locals are spoilt for choice. With all the activities and things to see, there’s always something new to uncover. We bet too that for many Amsterdam locals, there are still some things left on their bucket list. Here’s our top 5 things to see and do in Amsterdam, for those who know it well.

  1. Heineken Experience
  2. Summer program at ARTIS Royal Zoo
  3. Outdoor cinema
  4. A photo walk along the docks
  5. Canal Cruise

1. Get better acquainted with an Amsterdam icon

Every self-respecting Dutch should know how and why Heineken became one of the world’s most popular beers… but do you know what makes the Heineken® Star Serve? Spend an afternoon perfecting your pour at the Heineken® Experience brewery. Practice your pour, check out the science behind brewing, and print your name on a label. It’s a great day out when the kids are otherwise occupied. 

And if you want to practice your pour before you go, here’s a quick how-to:

  • Step 1: Rinse the glass — it should be squeaky clean! 
  • Step 2: Hold the glass at a 45 degrees angle and begin your pour
  • Step 3: Skim the foam with the skimmer.
  • Step 4: Make sure the line of the head is at the shoulders of the Heineken® star for perfect beer-to-foam ratio
  • Step 5: Serve the beer on a branded coaster, ensuring the star faces the person drinking it.

Note that this tour is 18+ and discounted with the Amsterdam City card!

2. A full summer program at ARTIS

Got the kids for the day? Until September 5th, ARTIS Royal Zoo has a full summer program, offering tonnes of things to do beyond becoming acquainted with their wild residents. They’re hosting scavenger hunts, kids’ yoga, and puppet shows during the day, as well as jazz, classical, and pop music concerts at night. We couldn’t think of a better time to enjoy one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious zoos.

3. Outdoor cinema events

Does anyone do outdoor cinema events as well as the Dutch? If they do, we haven’t seen it. This year, get your film-fix outdoors (and stay COVID safe) at any one of Amsterdam’s outdoor cinema events. Whether Rooftop Movie Nights, the Drive-In cinema, or the Forest Film Festival, there’s sure to be a film for every mood. Don’t forget to pack your picnic! 

4. A self-guided photo walk by the docks

Whether you’re on a bike or foot, Zeeburg is one of the most photogenic areas to explore in Amsterdam. Whether you want to up your selfie game or practice your analogue photo skills, Zeeburg’s blend of modern architecture and classic buildings makes for the ideal backdrop. You’ll know it because of the flocks of visitors who visit each year, but now there are fewer people than ever before, now might be the time to appreciate the melée of architectural styles sans crowds. 

5. Get cruisin’

As summer sets in, we think it’s high time to take to the canals. No boat? No problem. Why not book a spot on one of the many cruises through the winding canals of the city? Hot tip: Night time cruises are even better. Watching the bright city lights mirrored on the rippling surface of the canals is an unforgettable experience — and when was the last time you really stopped to enjoy the city lights?