Amsterdam in the heart: the guide to the unmissable places in the city

Journey to the Amsterdam in the heart: the guide to the unmissable places of the city. Where to go and what to see, the dream places.

In your travels around Europe, you cannot miss the fascinating city of Amsterdam, especially in spring. In this period, the city of canals dresses up with the colors of its tulips and organizes festivals and events in the open air.

Amsterdam is the largest city in the Netherlands and the capital, although the seat of government is in The Hague. Its main feature are the semicircular canals that cross it, one inside the other facing the port that overlooks the IJsselmeer, the artificial lake separated from the North Sea by the great Afsluitdijk dam.

In the course of its history Amsterdam has been an important port, center of commercial traffic with the whole world. An aspect that has given the city a great openness, favoring that climate of tolerance for which it is famous.

Amsterdam’s main canals and most of its historical buildings date back to the 17th century, the era of the so-called Dutch Golden Age, during which commerce flourished, favoring the development of arts and sciences. During the 1600s Holland was the richest country in Europe and Amsterdam for its wealth, artists and scientists could be compared to Florence in the 1400s.

Amsterdam’s characteristic houses blend into an urban landscape where contemporary buildings stand out.

In a harmony of forms where past and present coexist. The city of Amsterdam is entirely crossed by the famous bike paths, which together with the long pedestrian streets and the efficient public transport network make this city absolutely livable and pleasant to cross.

In the historic center of Amsterdam, its network of canals was recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2010. Overlooking the canals are many historic houses, all colorful, tall and narrow, recognized as monumental buildings. Their peculiarity is to have the front facade tilted forward towards the canals and winches that protrude from the top of the facades, on the gables: they were used to lift the goods from the boats in the canals and bring them to the warehouse that many merchants had in their homes. The inclination of the facade prevented the heavy load from hitting the facade during lifting.

Amsterdam’s canal network is so extensive that it has earned the city the nickname of Venice of the North. The city’s territory is crossed by more than 100 km of canals. These form about 90 islands and are crossed by about 1,500 bridges. The three main canals are Herengracht, Keizersgracht and Prinsengracht. They were dug in the 17th century and form concentric belts around the heart of the city called Grachtengordel.

The area of the historical center of Amsterdam, crossed by these three main canals, delimited by the Singelgracht canal which also includes the Jordaan district, is a UNESCO protected area. Along the main canals of Amsterdam face 1,550 monumental buildings.

Amsterdam’s 10 must-see attractions
A city on a human scale to cross on foot, better still by bicycle. Bicycles can be easily rented and in addition to the tracks there are entire parking lots just for them and also some special crossings such as the large bicycle-pedestrian tunnel at Amsterdam Centraal station.

Dam Square — This is the heart of Amsterdam, dating back to the thirteenth century. Here overlook the Royal Palace, also known as the City Hall of Amsterdam, later became the royal residence, and the church Nieuwe Kerk. On the opposite side of the square stands the Nationaal Monument, an obelisk 22 meters high, erected in 1956 in memory of the fallen of the Second World War.

Rijksmuseum — Amsterdam is full of museums, the main one is the Rijksmuseum, here are preserved the great works of the Dutch masters of the ‘600 as Rembrandt and Vermeer.

Van Gogh Museum — Van Gogh, the greatest Dutch artist of the modern era has his own museum. The Van Gogh Museum is located next to the Rijksmuseum and consists of two modern buildings connected to each other, made in different eras. In addition to the permanent exhibition of Van Gogh’s works, exhibitions and events are also organized.

Canal Boat Tour — One of the main attractions in Amsterdam is the canal boat tour. It is a way to explore the city from a different point of view and to admire the characteristic houses, many of which overlook the water and are not always visible from the streets and squares.

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