1 – Visit a coffeeshop because coffeeshops form the essence of life in Amsterdam. It is not uncommon to walk in a coffee shop and not only grab a cup of coffee but also order some hash or weed to go with it. Since all coffee shops are different and have their own atmosphere, you must make it a point to visit as many as you can to enjoy a variety of ambience.
2 – Walk around the canals because Amsterdam has some splendid canals that are simply waiting to be explored. During the 17th century these canals were actually used for transportation and military purposes. As society progressed over the years many of the canals had to be filled in so that streets could be paved for cars to race and other automobiles to race on. However, there are still 164 canals which have been preserved courtesy of their historic importance.
3 – Eat magic mushrooms that Amsterdam is famous for the world over and experience the feeling of calm and relaxation steal over you. Magic mushrooms are nothing but a variety of toadstools that trigger mild hallucinations and hence are treated as exotic in this city. The fact that they are not grown indigenously but imported from far-away lands like Ecuador, Mexico and Hawaii does not deter the Dutch from revering them and experimenting with them.
4 – Go to Bloemendaal Beach and spend a day basking in the sun at one of the pavilions or rocking away at the beach party. All it takes is hailing a transport from the city and within the hour you will find yourself in a pristine white sandy beach that is strongly reminiscent of any tropical haven. Having reached it is just a question of finding a suitable pavilion and settling down for the day.
5 – Visit a festival in summer while in Amsterdam because it is the time of the year when everyone is out in the open and making the most of the warmth exuded by the sun’s rays. Given the variety, no matter what your tastes are you are sure to find something to your liking and must make the most of this opportunity to set aside your inhibitions and indulge.
6 – Ice skating on canals in winter is a popular activity amongst the locals and one that tourists can attempt too. Thanks to the crisscross network as also the length of canals, these transform into most wonderful skating rinks as soon as the temperature drops and serve as the ground for one of the most exciting outdoor activities.
7 – Relax in the Jordaan by finding a comfortable nook in one the many courtyards and settling down for a few hours. Chances are that you would be looking at a narrow cobbled alley lined with art galleries, canals, ancestral homes and eating joints serving a wide variety of fare. While you are here, do make it a point to learn about the history of the area because it is more interesting than many of the legends surrounding the city.
8 – In Amsterdam there are people who prefer to treat their boats as permanent homes and it is one such individual who gave the city its first Houseboat Museum. If people were inquisitive before their questions have increased manifold now that they are allowed to take a tour within typically Dutch interiors. To abate their curiosity, tour operators willingly answer any queries and even permit photography which is another first in the city in terms of museums.
9 – Eat Bitterballen at FEBO and remember the experience for all the remaining years of your life. Bitterballen are Dutch-style meatballs in which the meat is acquired from a mysterious source, deep fried and served with a tangy mustard dip. Simple though it might sound, the reason as to why they are famous in Amsterdam is because the meat filling is hot and spicy enough to be etched in your memory forever.
10 – Sit in Vondelpark or explore the expanse on a pair of skates that are inline. At times the park becomes crowded which means you will be weaving in between people. Look at it like going through an obstacle course and you are in for some active fun.