Take some time out in Amsterdam’s parks and squares. Though the city is compact and highly urbanised, it still manages to have a healthy share of beautiful green spaces and botanical gardens providing a welcome dose of fresh air, nature, and relaxation.
Plant enthusiasts can’t miss the centuries-old Hortus Botanicus botanical garden, which boasts an incredible abundance of different plant species and a butterfly sanctuary, and the city’s massive Vondelpark is a must for that picnic in a lively park. The Oosterpark is also an option for a more tranquil experience away from the tourists.
If you haven’t got a picture next to the I AMSTERDAM sculpture in Museumplein, have you really been to Amsterdam? Surrounded by the city’s most famous museums, the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum and Stedelijk Museum, Museumplein is often abuzz with locals and tourists. If you’re travelling in winter, be sure to skate on Museumplein’s ice rink!
Amsterdam’s Vondelpark is undoubtedly the city’s largest and most famous park, welcoming around 10 million residents and tourists to its lush grounds every year. The park is home to an open-air theatre, a variety of terrace restaurants and cafes, and an enormous rose garden filled with some 70 different species of roses. It’s a perfect spot to rest with a drink after exploring the nearby museums.
Located in the Plantage district, the Hortus Botanicus is one of the world’s oldest botanical gardens at nearly 400 years old. After just a few minutes following twisting paths through leafy gardens, bright flowers and exotic plants, you’re sure to forget you’re in one of the busiest capitals in Europe. Definitely a must-see at any time of the year.
Get in touch with nature and enjoy some fresh air at Rembrandtpark, a large and peaceful green space located in Amsterdam West. A local favourite as it often presents a quieter atmosphere than the other city parks, Rembrandtpark is home to sculptures, beautiful ponds, and even a petting zoo: The Uylenburg. Wander one of the many walking trails, or take a picnic lunch and enjoy some people-watching.
Though it’s a bit out of the main city, Oosterpark is well worth a visit if you’re after a little escape from the busier areas. A 30-minute walk from the city centre by foot, and even less if you’ve adopted the local way of life by using pedal power, the journey to the park can also prove a unique experience: it winds through the city’s beautiful residential areas, a stone of Amsterdam that so many tourists mistakenly leave unturned.