History & Culture

From its humble beginnings as a 13th-century fishing village on a river bed to its current role as a major hub for business, tourism and culture, Amsterdam has had a strong tradition as a center of culture and commerce.

Alongside tulips and windmills, the global image of Amsterdam is one of a city entwined with water. From the 1500s onwards, Amsterdam gained a position square at the epicenter of global sea trade. Since its development in the 17th century, Amsterdam’s Canal Ring has grown to be one of the world’s most unique urban landscapes. The resulting wealth and knowledge of shipbuilding was instrumental in enabling the city to introduce pleasure sailing and open the world’s first marina in 1622.

With 800 years of history, world-famous museums and galleries and a packed “what’s on” agenda, Amsterdam’s cultural life never fails to excite, inspire and surprise. There’s something new to experience every day and night of the week in Amsterdam. Learn more about Dutch Master Painters like Rembrandt, Van Gogh and Vermeer. Enjoy music at The Royal Concertgebouw or visit the Amsterdam Dance Event. Or enjoy the picture-postcard beauty of the city aboard a luxury saloon boat.

Wine & Dine

Whether you’re looking for Michelin standard cuisine or a cozy local restaurant, you’ll find plenty to please your palate in Amsterdam. Make sure you check out the thriving bar scene too - watch the world go by from a canal side terrace, or head to a stylish cocktail bar if you’re after something a little more shaken and stirred.

Amsterdam certainly holds its own on the restaurant front, offering a culinary melting pot reflective of the city itself. Restaurants offer everything a hungry visitor craves: from Indonesian to tapas, and from Mediterranean to modern Dutch. When it comes to bars, it’s impossible to walk for more than 150ft in the city without stumbling across a cozy café or specialty bar, and indeed watching the world go by from the comfort of a canal side terrace bar is one of the most pleasurable ways to while away an afternoon in Amsterdam.

When it comes to eating out in Amsterdam, there’s always something new and unique to try. With 16 Michelin-rated restaurants in Amsterdam carrying one (or two) of the coveted stars, the choices are as diverse as the city itself.