Hello, Does anyone have recommendations for activities to do in Amsterdam with children? We'll be there less than 2 days, so we want to stay in the city center mostly. Thanks for your suggestions!
It would depend on the age and interests of your children and when you are going... That said, Amsterdam is a wonderful city, family friendly and generally friendly. There are lots of great parks, canals to cruise and museums (Anne Frank house, Van Gogh) to explore. It's a walking city. You could go to the Hard Rock Café, or step into a local café, also take a daytrip to see the windmills in Zaanse Schans or how wooden shoes are made in Maarken or to the miniature city in Madurodam, where you kids can feel like giants. You could go to Delft and see the pottery being made. In season there are the tulips in Keukenhof. There are endless possibilities in Amsterdam and surrounding towns. If you're a bit more specific about your kids and the family interests, people can make better suggestions.
Thanks Lisa, I'll be there with my 7 year old son in August. I already love the windmills suggestion!
The Zaanse Schans is a 20-minute train ride from Amsterdam Centraal station with direct trains running every 15 mins. From the station Zaandijk Zaanse Schans it is a 10-minute walk to the Zaanse Schans proper.
Your child can travel for EUR 2,50 with a Rail Runner ticket. Ask for it at the ticket window.
The Museum Nemo is right next to Centrale(by walking bridge) and our 3 11 yo grandsons loved it! Hands on activities and hourly there is a crazy event were a large ball goes from the 2nd floor to the main one-they won't want to leave.
The accept the "IAmsterdam" card.
I just traveled to Amsterdam with a 7 year old and a 9 year old. They loved the city. We rented bikes and rode only in Vondelpark (we thought our kids were too young to handle biking in the city itself). The park was busy with other bikers, but the path is wide and the kids were able to do it. There is a bike rental place right near an entrance to the park. It was called A Bike Rentals (near the Marriott). They have tandem bikes if your kids aren't able to bike independently.
We also found lots of little playgrounds all over the city and we stoppped at them as we were walking by, which kept the kids happy. There is a little playground in Museumplein, near the Rijksmuseum. There is a playground in Vondelpark too. (kinda hard to find, though...it's a bit hidden)
NEMO museum is fun...if you don't want to do the actual museum, you can still enjoy the outside rooftop area without paying for entrance to the museum, which has some fun things for kids to play with.
The Royal Palace had a great audio tour for kids. They had an adult tour, a tour for little kids with stickers, and a tour for older aged kids. This was the best kids audio tour of any museum I've been to.
That science museum roof is great fun for everyone, with steep steps for climbing or lounging, or perhaps take refreshment from the café up top. Lots of photos at the website https://www.nemosciencemuseum.nl/en/
In one photo you can see canal boats tied up at the dock where the museum sits. These are the hobby of rich men, who keep the old boats in running order. No way to board, but many have plaques giving the boat history. Across the water you can also see the naval museum which has several displays on its dock plus information about the Netherlands' long history with the sea, including an extensive collection of maritimes paintings. Sometimes there are guided harbour tours from the museum. https://www.hetscheepvaartmuseum.nl/
Our 8 year old daughter LOVED the Van Gogh museum! They have an English language audio guide specifically geared towards children which worked great for her.
don't miss the local specialties at street stands- raw herring sandwich with onions and fries - which put American fries to shame! Plus lots of free samples at one of the cheese shops. If kids like gems, there is diamond cutting demonstration (followed by its jewelry store), and your hotel will gladly get you a free taxi to take you there (they must get a commission)
Messiah 7 : About the diamond store ; Gassan ? All I know is that I could have bought my ring a lot lower priced AND higher quality at Gassan's store at the Schiphol Airport shopping center - the one after check-in and passport control . No haggling like at Gassan's diamond factory or their store at the Dam Square . Of course kiddo won't see diamond cutting there . Just saying in case you might be tempted to buy something .
The Naval museum is more fun than it sounds. There's replica ships you can go into, lots of kids playing there. Also it's not too far of a tram ride to the windmill brewery T'ji which is a good place to see a windmill up close and despite being a brewery has good finger food and is family-appriopriate.
The flea market may interest them as well.
If they're not picky eaters, be sure and get a "reistaffel" at an Indonesian restaurant. Lots of little dishes made for sharing served in a wooden boat - but nothing is too spicy (ask for mild if necessary). Lots of fun!