Europe on a Budget: 20 Free Activities to do in Amsterdam



Night scene at a canal in Amsterdam


There are plenty of ways to save money on travelling. Holidaying in Amsterdam need not burn a hole in your pocket. Here are 20 interesting activities to do for free:


Sandeman’s New Amsterdam Tours

Love going on walking tours to explore a city? Take the free, three-hour, tip-only basis tours that start from the National Dam Square every afternoon at 11:15 am.


Albert Cupymarket

For an experience of the real Amsterdam up and close, visit the Albert Cupymarket and stroll along to enjoy unrestrained bargaining on watches, socks and fabrics and many more items.


The Secret Begijnhof

Concealed behind a mysterious, heavy wooden door in Spui Square, you have the Begijnhof Door. Explore the silent and historic environment.


Blijburg Beach

The Dutch have created an artificial beach on Ljburg Island and you can relax with some sunbathing or swimming free of cost.


Civic Guard Gallery

You can enjoy viewing some spectacular paintings by contemporaries of Rembrandt at the entrance to Amsterdam. There is a teaser section before entering the main exhibition hall.


Amsterdam flower marketFlower Market

You can take a leisurely stroll through Amsterdam flower market (called the Bloemenmkt). The stunning bouquets of tulips, roses and daffodils standout against a canal backdrop.


Openbare Bibiotheek Amsterdam

The OBA is the Amsterdam Public Library that offers panoramic views of the city from the top floor. The multi-storeyed library also has some soulful piano music playing at certain times.



Take a leisurely look at the neo-arts exhibits at the derelict shipyard at NDSM-werf. You can reach the place by taking the free ferry that runs behind the Central Station. The exhibit features stunning junk makeovers and graffiti.


Bimhuis Jazz Music

Jazz lovers can listen for free or join the Bimhuis every Tuesday at 10 pm from September to June.


EYE Film Instituut Nederland

The basement holds a permanent film exhibition that is free of charge. The rest of the building is an architectural masterpiece that houses four cinemas, a film library and studio.


Pond and tulips in Vondelpark, AmsterdamVondelpark

Need a break from the city’s bustle and crowds? Get away to Vondelpark where you can relax or sunbathe and watch children and adults play ballgames.



More good news for music buffs; the Dutch Opera singers and Philharmonic stage free performances on Tuesdays from lunchtime from September to June.


Gassan Diamond Factory Tour

Interested in updating your knowledge on diamonds? Enjoy a one hour tour watching local artisans cutting and polishing diamonds at the Gassan Diamond Factory.


Nieuwe Kerk

This majestic and ancient building was built back in 1408 and has witnessed numerous royal coronations. Take the free peek at the building’s history (you have to pay to enter the actual building).



Enjoy classical concerts from 12:30 to 1:00 pm every Wednesdays from September to June; take your seat early to avoid the huge crowds that throng the shows.


Amsterdamse Bos Bridge in Evening GlowAmsterdamse Bos

This artificially created forest has free jogging, biking and hiking trails plus a few scattered pools.


Sunday Amsterdam Local Bazaars

Sundays are especially dedicated to local Amsterdam markets where you often get free tasting samples of food and drink.


Hollandsche Manage

Sit at the pleasant cafe and watch the horse riders trotting their horses. The building is known for its classic architecture.


Multatuli Museum

This small but interesting museum chronicles the lifework of Eduard Dekker (alias Multatuli) who spent his life in Indonesia. The museum showcases his chronicles on unfair colonial practices.


Exploring Noord

Noord is a typically local area of Amsterdam where you can stroll or cycle around. You can reach Noord by using the free ferry services.


If you are planning a budget holiday in Amsterdam, enjoy the free activities on offer. With so much available, holidaying in Holland need not cost a fortune at all!




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