Amsterdam Travel: Best Things to do in Amsterdam with Teenagers

Your Guide to Visiting Amsterdam with Teenagers

Of all the Amsterdam travel blogs I've written, this guide to Amsterdam with teens feels the weirdest because I am neither a teen, nor am I the parent of teenage children. In fact, a quick scroll through my mental rolodex (showing my age here) has me wondering if I even know any teenagers. But here's the thing, while I'll never be able to claim I know what it's like to be a teenager right now, I can clearly remember what it's like to be a teenager and some days these memories are so vivid it feels utterly shocking and ridiculous that I am not a 17-year-old, but instead a woman in her late 30s.

But enough about my love-hate relationship with growing old, let's explain why I think this is the best guide to visiting Amsterdam with teens. Firstly, when I wrote my guide to visiting Amsterdam with kids, I planned to write a section listing the best things to do in Amsterdam with teenagers, but that list just went on and on and on and on, and I realised that I had another separate blog post on my hand.

Secondly, many of these things I'm listing are also great things to do when you're not a teenager in Amsterdam. I also feel the same way about my Amsterdam with kids guide. But it's also true that these are things that teenage kids (and even tweens) may enjoy more than your traditional Amsterdam must-visit places, and certainly more than the toddler and primary-school-aged kid-friendly Amsterdam things to do I listed in my kids guide

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links to products that I think you will enjoy on your trip to Amsterdam. I always seek out the best prices with companies I know well. Thanks for supporting As the Bird flies!

There are also some other posts I think you should check out to help you find the best things to do with teenagers in Amsterdam; this guide to things to do at night in Amsterdam does indeed have many things that are teen-friendly, as does this bucket list for the best weekend in Amsterdam, and if you only have one day in Amsterdam you and your kids may want to choose one of these one day Amsterdam itineraries. You all may also like to try to see how many of these free things to do in Amsterdam you can get through.

TOP TIP: If you're planning on doing a number of the museums and attractions on the list below, and you'll be using public transport, then I highly recommend you and your teenagers get I amsterdam City Cards. Unfortunately, they don't have versions for kids, but teenagers (over 12s) will have to pay full price in museums anyway so this is all the more reason for you to consider getting the City Cards to save money across the board. I review the card in full and tell you the best one to get and the attractions you should go to here.

Top Tips for Visiting Amsterdam with Teens

As I have already stated, I'm not a parent of teenage children (and I'm already dreading being so!) so it's possible I am missing out on many important things you should know about when visiting Amsterdam with teens, but here are some things you should know before you bring your teenagers to Amsterdam, just so you can know what to expect. 

  • The legal drinking age for consuming alcohol in the Netherlands is 18. This went up from 16 in 2015 and so I think some people still get it wrong. That said, I think if you were having dinner with your 16+ or older teenage kids it wouldn't be frowned upon if they joined you in having a glass of wine or beer. (Believe it or not but I have still been asked to show ID when buying wine in supermarkets at my age so teenagers shouldn't think they will get an easy ride in Amsterdam if they're wanting to buy booze on the sly!).
  • Amsterdam is a relatively safe capital city. In fact, it is reported to have the least crime of any capital city in Europe, but petty crime is still a problem and it's my experience that busy, tourist areas (and tourists) are targeted more than local residents. So be mindful of pick-pockets and skimming devices on ATMs, as well as keeping all your belongings in safe and secure places.
  • The Red Light District is well worth visiting with teenagers. It absolutely depends on the kind of relationship you have with your children and the discussions you have with them, but I happen to think visiting the Red Light District is a good experience for teenagers of an appropriate age and sensibility. It provides lots of talking points and can encourage open-mindedness and awareness. It's almost certain your kids will have already heard about the reputation of the RLD so why not explore this together in a healthy way. There is a Prostitute Information Centre where you can find out lots of fact-based information as well as first-person accounts of what life is like working in the RLD. They also organise tours led by former sex workers.
  • People may approach teenagers (or you!) offering drugs in Red Light District. This really doesn't happen very often but it does happen. These people are not pushy or violent and you can just say no and walk by. It's possible they'll target younger looking adults because they think they're looking for a party.
  • Dutch teenagers are very independent and self-aware. They are perhaps trusted more than teenagers from other countries and you will see them moving around the city very independently by bike or otherwise. They nearly all have excellent command of English and other languages too (some Dutch high schools teach in both Dutch and English). But teenagers are still teenagers, of course, but I have previously commented on how you don't really see many teenagers hanging around in groups in public spaces like I'm used to seeing in UK. 

The Best Things to do in Amsterdam with Teenagers

And so here we go. Below are over 30 different things to do in Amsterdam that teenagers should love! We cover the more unusual and cool things to do in Amsterdam which I think teens will certainly be more interested in but I also go into the best museums for teenagers in Amsterdam because some of these really are so well done and cover topics they are currently studying or have an awareness of already. And finally, I've added on some foodie things to do with teenagers and places to grab lunch or dinner, because we all gotta eat!

Cool and Unusual Things to do with Teenagers in Amsterdam

Many teens love to be ahead of the curve and will almost instinctively reject doing things that are expected of them so surprise them with some of these more unsual things to do in Amsterdam, many of which will also give you plenty of cool points to cash in when you also want to do something you also want to do. However, I will warn you; the chances are you may also enjoy many of these cool things to do in Amsterdam with teens!

Find all the Cool Street Art on Spui...

Ever-changing and ever-colourful, this street on the cusp of the Red Light District has been gradually overtaken by street art in the last decade or so and is worthy of a stroll to see what you can find.

...and Around NDSM Werf

Hop on one of the free ferries from the back of Centraal Station to NDSM Werf and you'll find yourself in arguably the coolest corner of not just Amsterdam Noord but in Amsterdam. Wander around the old warehouses that now house start-ups, event spaces and antique/oddities shops and you'll find many a cool mural and graffiti. You should then stop for a bite to eat at Pllek before heading back.

Pedal Power Your Way Around the Canals on a Pedal Boat

If your teens aren't afraid of a bit of hard work to see all the sights under their own steam, you should definitely think about all piling in to a pedallo to make your way around the canals. It's not for everyone and you should have calm demeanors on hand when faced with a 20-metre-long canal tour boat, but it'll certainly be a hell of a lot of fun. It goes without saying that this should only be considered for warmer days!

SUP Your Way Around Amsterdam

If you want a different kind of workout with your teens then go on a SUP Paddle Boarding tour of Amsterdam. Admittedly (and rightly!) only available during the warmer months of summer, this is a pretty unique way to see Amsterdam from the water, and indeed there are only a handful of companies offering the service so be sure to do a bit of research and contact them in advance to book a tour.

Clean Up the Canals!

Another alternative way to tour Amsterdam's canals which has much less physical impact on your body, and indeed less chance of getting wet, but it has a very big and positive impact on the environment is to go on the Plastic Whale tours which take you around the canals while you and your teenagers use fishing nets to scoop up as much rubbish as you can find. Win-win! As of the time of writing they currently only take members of the public out on a Saturday so be sure to book in advance.

Enjoy the Views and Maybe a Swing at A'DAM Toren

From the canals to way up high and one of the best viewpoints in Amsterdam. The fairly new A'DAM Toren is one of these cool and artsy spaces that houses almost everything from a hotel to restaurants and bars to offices and also at the top of the tower, a special Swing called "Over the Edge". It's a good idea to book tickets for the observation deck in advance, and then once you're there pay the extra supplement to go on the Swing.

Get Spooked in Amsterdam Dungeons

Full disclosure, this is NOT my cup of tea at all, but yet again I should remind you I am NOT a teenager in any shape or form, so perhaps this is an even greater endorsement of Amsterdam Dungeons which always seems to have a queue outside and most of them look like teenagers, so if they're not teens I should probably go and ask them what moisturising cream they are all using... Because of that queue I definitely advise booking tickets in advance and you may also want to consider getting a combi-ticket to also see Madame Tussauds which is a two minute walk down the street, and again often has a queue of teenage-looking people.

Get Weirded Out at Body Worlds

Also not my cup of tea and I actually have visited this place and so you can consider it tried and tested, but Body Worlds again seemed to have a high percentage of teens among the visitors. If you don't already know much about Body Worlds, I highly recommend reading a bit about it because it's not for everyone but if your teenagers have an interest in science, biology or medicine they will be fascinated! You can book tickets in advance which may be a good idea as sometimes there are queues.

Climb High at De Klimmuur

If your teens are bonkers about bouldering and wild about wall-climbing then you must take them to the Klimmuur near Centraal Station. It's an indoor climbing wall centre that has lots of variety for beginners through to more experienced climbers. It's not your typical thing to do in Amsterdam, but when did teenagers ever want to follow the crowds?

Burn off Some Pancakes/Hot Dogs etc with Some Indoor Fun

Other indoor activities that I think teens may love - and these are perfect for evening entertainment too if they're not quite at the age to do long dinners or hanging out in bars, include the Sherlocked Escape Room Experience and the Powerzone games which include a laser tag game and some fluorescent ten-pin bowling. You may also want to check out the fast-becoming-famous Neon Mini Golf.

Get Arcade Happy at TonTon Club

Another indoor haven of games fun is TonTon Club. The original one is in the Red Light District and it's this one I like best as it's basically like walking back into time where the only place you could play video games was at an arcade (I don't actually remember this myself; I'm not that old!) and with a bar and restaurant serving snacks and drinks too, it's a great way to spend an evening. There other locations are bigger so have additional fun treats like bowling, mini golf, air-hockey tables, a karoke bar and adult obstacle courses.

Go on the Hunt for Some Space Invaders

As for outdoor fun, you may want to check out the free Space Invaders find and seek game that's available for a number of cities including Amsterdam. All over Amsterdam there are tiles with small space invaders painted on them and it's your job to find as many as you can. Sounds simple, and I guess it is, but it's a really nice way to see the city as it makes you look for more detail than you usually do and I love spotting them myself when I'm out and about.


And as we wrap up this section of the post (pun absolutely intended!) one place you may want to think bravely about taking your teenage kids to is Condomerie in the Red Light District. A part-shop, part-museum devoted solely to the condom, I can't think of a better place to help transmit a safe sex message to their brains!

Try a Coffee Shop Together

And if you're feeling braver yet, why not try one of Amsterdam's coffeeshops together? I have heard many positive stories of parents taking their teenage kids (over the age of 18) to try cannabis products together or supervised.

The minimum age for consuming or purchasing products in coffee shops is 18 and ID may be required as proof if you plan on smoking or staying inside, and most coffee shops in Amsterdam will have very informed and helpful staff who want to ensure you enjoy your high as safely and positively as possible. I happen to think this is possibly the safest environment for anyone to sample their first (or possibly not!) smoke or space cake!

For a list of the best coffeeshops in Amsterdam, some facts about the cannabis and coffeeshop scene, as well as more tips on how to enjoy Amsterdam's cannabis culture head here.

The Best Museums in Amsterdam for Teens

I know that many teens will feign maximum indifference for museums but please do go ahead and read this list regardless and see if any of them can be sold to your teenagers because there really are some fun, fascinating and fantastic-for-teens museums in Amsterdam.

Electric Ladyland - Museum of Fluorescent Art

Think of Amsterdam and places like the Van Gogh Museum, Anne Frank House, Rembrandt House Musuem and the national museum, the Rijksmuseum, all come to mind (and indeed many of these will fascinate history- and art-loving teens so you should click on those links and book tickets in advance to avoid disappointment).  But Amsterdam happens to be home to some pretty cool museums too. Top of the list of cool museums would be Electric Ladyland - Museum of Fluorescent Art. The first of its kind, this museum dedicated to fluorescent art is one of a kind and will impress even the most art-adverse kids.

MOCO Museum

But if you do have art fans as teenage children, and they particularly like Banksy then you MUST take them to MOCO Museum on Museumplein. It's a private collection of art so entry is not included with the I amsterdam City Card but it's one of the most comprehensive collections of Banksy works you can see in Europe, and there are regularly changing temporary exhibitions featuring other modern artists like Andy Warhol, Damien Hirst and Salvador Dali. 

Stedelijk Museum

While we're on the topic of modern art, the best modern art museum in Amsterdam, in my opinion, is the Stedelijk Museum, also found in Museum Square. If your teens are really into design then you should definitely head here for a thorough introduction to Dutch design over the last century or so. This museum is included in the I amsterdam City Card.

Gassan Diamond Museum

If your teenage children have an interest in jewellery, designer watches and/or diamonds, then you should definitely go on a tour of Gassans Diamond Museum. Find out the history of the diamond industry (good and bad), its connection to Amsterdam and the art of jewellery manufacturing on this guided tour which you can book via their website, and the best part, it's free to go on!

You could also combine a visit to this museum with a guided tour of the Jewish Cultural Quarter too.

The Museum of Bags and Purses

From diamonds to handbags and purses, you could be creating your teenager's dream day in Amsterdam if they love fashion. The Museum of Bags and Purses, or the Tassenmuseum Amsterdam, is one of my top five favourite museums in Amsterdam and anybody with even the smallest bit of interest in bags and fashion design will be mesmerised by this extensive collection of antique (dating back to the 16th century) and iconic handbags from the last few centuries.

Housed in a beautiful canal mansion house, I also highly recommend booking an afternoon tea in the museum's lovely cafe (although you can also just pop in for a coffee before or after your visit too!) and good news, the Museum of Bags and Purses is included in an I amsterdam City Card.

Anne Frank House

There's no denying that while some teenagers may be totally disinterested in Anne Frank, many teenagers (like I was!) will know her story well and feel a need to visit the house and specifically, the Secret Annex, where she and her family hid for a number of years. Although I have been many times, I still find the museum incredibly moving to visit and it makes me think about many different things. 

I also think the museum has been excellently set up for high-school aged children especially to absorb the reality of what life was like in the Secret Annex but to also put it in the context of modern times and struggles. 

TOP TIP: You MUST book your tickets to visit Anne Frank House online and in advance. Tickets are released three months in advance and only a small number are reserved for sale on the day and again these are ONLY available online (and they sell out almost immediately). Also be aware that Anne Frank House is NOT included in the I amsterdam City Card.

Versetzmuseum (Dutch Resistance Museum)

Continuing on a similar them to the Anne Frank House, the Dutch Resistance Museum tells the story of a connected side of Amsterdam during the war; one of resisting the Nazi rule, hiding Jewish residents, and also simply surviving a very difficult period as many Amsterdammers experienced poverty, famine and oppression during those years.

It's a very simple but effective museum that I always recommend to people visiting Amsterdam with teenagers or high-school-aged children studying, especially those who come from countries that were never occupied so they have more opportunity to see what it was like. This museum is included in the I amsterdam City Card, and you should also know it's directly opposite Royal ARTIS Zoo, Amsterdam's city zoo which may or may not be worth visiting (again this is included in the I amsterdam City Card).

Jewish Cultural Quarter

The third place I think teenagers with an interest in Second World War history should go to is the Jewish Cultural Quarter, an area and collection of museums and buildings that share the history of Jewish people in Amsterdam.

Comprising the Jewish Historical Museum, the separate Jewish Historical Museum's Children’s Museum, the Portuguese Synagogue, and the Hollandsche Schouwburg (Dutch National Holocaust Memorial), this is a really comprehensive way to learn about the thousands of Jewish families that made Amsterdam home many centuries ago, thus shaping the city into what it is now (one of Amsterdam's most popular nicknames is Mokum, which is a Yiddish word meaning "place" or "safe haven") and then the huge loss and devastation they endured during the Second World War.

Entry to all of these sites are included with an I amsterdam City Card, or alternatively you can buy a one-day Jewish Cultural Quarter ticket.


One of my favourite Amsterdam museums for young kids, the Tropenmuseum would also be a hit with older children as it explores many of the topics that influence our young people's dialogues these days, namely multi-culturalism, de-colonisation, and world travel. It's a great museum with plenty of hands-on activities for kids of all ages (and adults!) that tackles difficult topics head on while also highlighting the many wonderful glories of diversity. (The museum is included in the I amsterdam City Card).


And now we go back to some slightly more off-the-wall museums, yay! The Kattenkabinet is a museum dedicated to cat art. No, I'm not joking. The Kattenkabinet only has artwork that features cats or felines in one form or another. I guess you could say that it has to be seen to be believed. (The museum is included in the I amsterdam City Card).

Pianola Museum

Did you know that Amsterdam has a museum all about small pianos? No, do not adjust your screen. You are reading that correctly, but if your teenager plays piano or keyboard, or is into music in a big way, they will almost certainly find the Pianola Museum fascinating. (The museum is also included in the I amsterdam City Card).

EYE Film Institute

And if your teenager is more into film than art, you have to take them to the EYE Film Institute. This will also mean getting a free ferry to Amsterdam Noord from the back of Centraal Station, something that is a bit of an adventure in itself. You'll see this impressive white ferry-like structure as you approach and inside you can watch films or visit exhibitions about the world's best, most scandalous, and sometimes weirdest film-makers.

Visiting the EYE Film Institute is included in the I amsterdam City Card, and it's also the current location of the I amsterdam letters (as of Spring 2020).


From film to photography, and specifically FOAM Museum of Photography, another of my top five Amsterdam museums. FOAM is a very cool museum that has brilliant exhibitions from Dutch and international photographers and it's one of my favourite places to just disappear for an hour or so.

Huis Marseille Amsterdam is another photography museum in Amsterdam should your teenage kids be really keen on photography. Both FOAM and Huis Marseille are included in the included in the I amsterdam City Card

Museum Tot Zover

And now we get really weird. And dark. But this is a museum many people have rated and I know that some teens are very interested in death so I really wanted to include it here. Museum Tot Zover is a museum all about funerals, burials and basically what we do with our dead. It's designed to share the different cultural funerary practices of many of the nationalities living in Amsterdam with a view to seeing what they tell us about these cultures and people. I'm yet to visit the museum myself, but the reviews are great, and best of all its free with the I amsterdam City Card.

NEMO Science Museum

I'll come clean and say I umm-ed and ahh-ed about adding NEMO Science Museum to this list because it's really much better for younger children (ideally 4-10 year olds, I would say) but it's also true that there are exhibits in here that science-mad teenagers will love. And even those who aren't interested in science may find the floor all about hormones and adolescence relatable if not super interesting.

If that doesn't work, NEMO Is worth visiting for the rooftop views over the city, which you don't actually need to pay to access. NEMO is included with the I amsterdam City Card and because of those aforementioned younger kids you may want to visit right at the beginning of the day or the end to avoid the off-the-chart noise levels!

Cannabis Museum

We're going to head to the Red Light District in a second to explore some of the best things to do with teenagers there but let's put the Cannabis Museum on this list of Amsterdam museums for teens because if your kids have done any reading at all about Amsterdam they will already know the reputation it has for tolerating (a keyword!) cannabis use.

Make sure you and your teenage kids are fully informed of what the deal is, the history of cannabis use in Amsterdam (and beyond!) and possibly earn some cool parents points in the process. FYI, this museum is not included in the I amsterdam City Card.

Sex Museum

While the Cannabis Museum is relatively modest for parents to navigate with teenage kids, the Sex Museum may be slightly harder to deal with but honestly, I think some families will welcome this opportunity to explore a typically taboo (at worst) or tricky (at best) subject to discuss with your kids. It's not the most highbrow of museums and indeed there may be rooms and exhibits that are not age appropriate for young teens but it's actually quite a good laugh if you're feeling brave.

Also, it's highly likely your kids will be WAY more uncomfortable than you so maybe you just agree to meet outside in an hour after you pay their admission, because, yes, unfortunately this museum is not included in the I amsterdam City Card.

The Best Foodie Things to do with Teenagers in Amsterdam

I'm highly aware that some teens will have a very yellow diet (which is a good thing with Dutch food!) of pasta, potatoes and chips, while others will be masterchefs in the making, so I've tried to cover all the bases with these things to do and things to eat if your teenagers like food!

De Foodhallen

Top of my list of foodie things to do in Amsterdam is definitely a trip to Foodhallen. Housed in a former tram warehouse, this recently refurbished building is where you can find countless street food type stalls alongside a handful of bars and sweet treat outlets. In the same building (De Hallen) there are also a number of restaurants worth considering for an atmospheric lunch or restaurant, and be sure to go to Foodhallen hungry as there is SO much food to try from all over the world, as well as some Dutch classics like bitterballen.

Go on a Food Tour of Amsterdam

Of course the most obvious thing to do with foodie teens in Amsterdam would be a food tour. No matter what you've heard before about Dutch food, take it from me that after I did a food tour of Jordaan area I learnt SO MUCH about the rich history and variety of the cuisine available in Amsterdam. 

There are many other walking food tours available in Amsterdam and I think this one in De Pijp would be great as this is a very vibrant neighbourhood that teens will love exploring, and this one also looks a lot of fun. Oh, and there's also a chocolate tour of Amsterdam which you get to do in a Fiat 500.... yes, that doesn't make much sense to me either but it sure does look like fun!

Eat Fries

While the best fries (or pataat as it's called in Dutch) are most likely going to be call Vlaamse Frites, which means Flemish Fries so not Dutch at all, eating fries has oddly become something of a must-tick Amsterdam bucket list item. And I think many teenagers will be on board with this. I can't really tell you where to find the best fries in Amsterdam but I think there's something fairly authentic about eating fries at one of Amsterdam's best street markets, like Albert Cuyp Market. (Also bonus points if you or your teens spot a brilliantly named Chipsy King fries take-away!)

Eat Pancakes

Pancakes are another one of those foods that I'm not sure is entirely Dutch these days (although the name is exactly the same as the Dutch pannekoeken) but do you even care when there's yummy food for the taking. There are SO many places to get good pancakes in Amsterdam, but for extra cool factor for your teens (and you!) I recommend checking out Mr Stacks in De Pijp (also a cool area to wander around)., and they also have many vegan options on their menu. (And if you or your teens are vegan, please do check out this guide to vegan Amsterdam.)

Combine a Canal Cruise with Dinner

There are some great evening canal boat tours that take you around Amsterdam's most famous canals while also feeding you food that should prove popular with teenagers. Available dinner or food cruises include a burgers and hot dogs tour, an evening pizza cruise, and a canal boat tour where you get to eat pancakes! Just maybe don't try to do all three in one day...

Surround Them with Mother's Love (and Yummy Dutch Food) at Moeders

If you and your teenagers really want to sample some Dutch food and you want a bit of a giggle at the same time I recommend going to Moeders restaurant. Literally meaning "mothers", Moeders serves up the heartiest, stodgiest Dutch food but the whole restaurant is a tribute to mothers everywhere and guests are invited to leave a photo of their mother in the restaurant. And so every wall, surface, window sill and even the ceiling are covered in photographs of mothers. It's a pretty unique restaurant and is a fine introduction to Dutch food, but you DEFINITELY have to book in advance.

Enjoy The Avocado Show

So while Moeders may have zero cool factor, the Avocado Show in De Pijp is dripping in cool. So much cool, I'm not even sure it is cool anymore. But leave that up to your teens as they can spend several minutes photographing their avocado-based dishes which are unbelievably Instagramable. Unfortunately, you can't reserve for the Avocado Show so you may have to wait in a queue, unless you go super early or go during the week.

Get Burgers and Hot Dogs for all at Bulls & Dogs

And if The Avocado Show is too healthy for your carnivorous (or indeed vegan!) teenagers, head over to Bulls & Dogs (also in De Pijp but the other side of the neighbourhood) where you can get the best looking hot dogs and milkshakes, with lots of Halal, vegetarian and gluten free options available.

Eat Too Much Food with a Rijsttaffel

If your teenagers are a big fan of spicy food and curries, then you MUST get a rijsttaffel with them. Meaning "rice table" the rijsttaffel is actually an Indonesian meal where you sample a range of curries, veggie dishes, sides and pickles all accompanied with lots of rice. It's delicious, filling and isn't always a meal that most visitors to Amsterdam are knowledgeable enough to seek out. The same goes for Surinamese food too which is also delicious!

Eat the Best Dutch Apple Pie

Did you know that the Dutch are famous for the apple pie? You will never forget once you've tried a slice and the very best Dutch apple pie in Amsterdam is found at Winkel 43. You may have to queue, but believe me it's worth the wait!

Visiting Amsterdam as a Teenager: One Teen's Experience of Visiting Amsterdam with Her Family

So as a woman in her late 30s with young children who is already dreading the hormone-heavy days of adolecense I am the worst person to really give any kind of subjective account of what it's like to visit Amsterdam as a teenager. So I reached out to a fellow travel blogger from Roaming Goblin, who did visit Amsterdam as a teenager with her parents and this is what she recalled about that trip, sharing what she remembered as the highlights of the trip and the things she didn't enjoy as much.

"My parents aren't much of a beach goers and prefer milder climates so we spent most summers on different road trips. We drove all around Benelux and also visited Amsterdam a few times. However, the trip I remember the most was in the winter, over New Year, when we went with an organized group. I guess it was a very good deal, since we never did any group tours before or later.

What I loved about Amsterdam:

  • Cheese! I love cheese and there were so many sorts. In Zaanse Schans we learned all about making it and I probably ate more in a few days in Netherlands than in a year at home. Had to try them all.
  • Clog making. We bought little key chain clogs for everyone.
  • Bicycles everywhere and no hills. Cycling heaven.
  • Funny T-shirts, shops with weed related gear I wasn't allowed to buy but was so interesting to check out.
  • Madam Tussauds museum with crazy long line. We went to another one (different country) on a less busy day. Years later I returned to check the one in Amsterdam with my hubby. There is also great view from the top windows.
  • Little fishing villages and fried fish street food. Not very healthy but so yummy.
  • Evening walks pass typical Dutch houses with large windows and no drapes. In the winter, you could look inside and see family eating dinner next to a beautiful tree and it was all so picture perfect looking. I guess you have to keep your leaving room extra tidy, when you everyone can look inside from the street at any time.
  • Tulips. We never made it to the fields during growing seasons but they are everywhere. Always. In the winter you can buy plastic or wooden ones.

What I didn't like:

  • Red light district. I wasn't there much on purpose but it is hard to avoid, since it is not only one street. Ladies in the shop windows can be found in many smaller streets leading to the most famous one. I was an extra well-read teen, so I knew a lot about prostitution from books and newspapers. Every time we go to Amsterdam I can't ignore how sad those ladies look.
  • Drank men on the tourist bus comparing photos and videos they took (you are not allowed to do that) of the red light district and loudly commenting in their language. Since we were the same nationality and I was sitting in front of them, they ruined my day.
  •  Long lines in front of the attractions.
  • I wasn’t allowed to go to New Year party and had to stay in the holiday home with my parents and little brother all night. It would be the same, if we were back home. 

Thanks Roaming Goblin, who you can follow on Instagram. And you can read their tips for Airbnb Hosting here.

And that's pretty much it with all my tips for visiting Amsterdam with teenagers. Below you can find some pins to save and share, and be sure to check out all my other Amsterdam travel blogs, including this monster guide to visiting Amsterdam with (younger) kids, the best hotels in Amsterdam for all budgets, and tips for things to do at night in Amsterdam.

Frances M. Thompson

Londoner turned wanderer, Frankie is an author, freelance writer and blogger. Currently based in Amsterdam, Frankie was nomadic for two years before starting a family with her Australian partner. Frankie is the author of three short story collections, and is a freelance writer for travel and creative brands. In 2017, she launched WriteNOW Cards, affirmation cards for writers that help build a productive and positive writing practice. When not writing contemporary fiction, Frankie shops for vintage clothes, dances to 70s disco music and chases her two young sons around Amsterdam.
Find Frankie on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Google+.

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