Amsterdam is a city full of culture and life. No matter the time of year it is an exciting city to visit for traveler on a layover. The airport is conveniently located near the city center and the train will drop passengers off in the city in no time at all. After storing your belongings in the luggage lockers at Schiphol Airport the train to Amsterdam Central is just a 15 minute ride. Whether you have 6 hours or 10 hours to burn on your layover there is time to enjoy this beautiful city.
Cruise the Canals
If you have never been to Amsterdam a cruise around canals is a great way to start your tour of the city. You can get on a canal cruise near Central Station and hop off at the next site you want to see. Canal tours can last between 1 and 2 hours depending on the company you select.
The Museums of Amsterdam
Amsterdam is home to some of the worlds best museums. They include the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum, and the Anne Frank House. The lines at the Van Gogh Museum and Anne Frank House can form early. I recommend getting to the museums when they open if possible or purchasing tickets online before your layover. There may not be time to enjoy all three so be sure to determine your preference before arriving in Amsterdam.
The Red Light District
The red light district in Amsterdam is famous for a reason. It is much more of a tourist attraction than a seedy part of town you might be imagining in your head. You will find tours full of curious onlookers strolling through the red light district day or night, which is located just steps away from Amsterdam Central Station. Many tours are offered if you are curious about the history of the neighborhood.
Have a Bite to Eat
After working up an appetite touring the city head over to Leidseplein. It is a busy square and home to some of the cities most lively nightlife. However, during the day there are many cafés and restaurants for dining during your layover. Many trams also intersect here if you want to get to know the public transit system during your Amsterdam layover.
Bike the City
Amsterdam is one of the worlds most popular cities where cyclists rule the roads. Mike’s Bike Tours is one of the most popular tours in Amsterdam and they offer mini-tours, private tours, and even longer 4-hour tours. Pick the tour that fits your layover and enjoy the city sites with a tour guide and a bike. It’s a great way to get to know the city.
The Perfect Amsterdam Layover
The proximity of the airport to the center of town makes Amsterdam one of the best cities in the world to plan a layover. It is simple to store your luggage at Schiphol Airport and make it to city center in about 15 minutes. So whether your layover is 6, 8, or 10 hours long you can enjoy Amsterdam for the day. Make the most of your layovers and don’t stay at the airport all day. Get out and explore a new city.