Amsterdam Neighbourhoods You Must Visit

From the iconic, old-school bars of De Pijp to the elegant Nine Streets, or the industrial neighbourhood and seaport in North – Amsterdam’s got it all. If you are planning your short stay here, it’s good to know what to explore.

The neighbourhoods of Amsterdam all differ historically. The current capital city began as a fishing village in the 12th century encompassing a dam of the Amstel river. Quickly, the population of the settlement began to grow and the canal belts were built. Around the 1860’s Amstel Hotel still remained on the outskirts of the city. It was only when the infamous Heineken Brewery was built that hip neighbourhoods, such as De Pijp or the Old East began to appear on the map. How’s that for a bit of history! 

Now, back to your upcoming short stay… It’s good to know that the apartments at SA are located in hotspots all over the city. So, you will not need to travel far to enjoy your full Amsterdam experience (a bike is enough, or… you can go on foot). Where should you go? See our list of neighbourhoods below:

1. Centre – if you found your apartment via SA, chances are that your serviced apartment is close to the centre. The buildings around Centraal Station and the shopping street Kalverstraat are the remnants of Old Amsterdam. The older wooden houses were burned down during the Great Fire of Amsterdam. Here, you can wander around the Dam – with the Royal Castle, and some historical bars and restaurants (D’Vijff Vlieghen, Café De Dokter), or visit the tulip market at Singel. You might be adventurous enough to pass by the Red Light District. You’d be amazed that it’s just a regular part of the city. If you’re a fan of city panoramas, check out bar Sky Lounge located close to Centraal Station.

2. De Jordaan and Nine Streets – are nine small, picturesque streets intersecting the canals and the long, winding streets Singel, Herengracht, Keizersgracht and Prinsengracht. A World Heritage UNESCO site, this area is perfect for long walks where you can admire the fancy architecture of the Golden Era. The streets are filled with designer boutique shops, small art galleries, cozy restaurants and cafes galore! We recommend Pluk for the best cakes in town and Screaming Beans Coffee Roasters (for coffee, obviously!). For elegant dinners check out Brasserie Ambassade.

3. De Pijp – it’s funny how certain neighbourhoods evolve with time. De Pijp used to be home to the poorer working class, prostitutes and dreamers who would live with their entire families in apartments measuring 25m sq. After that, it became popular amongst students due to the low prices… In the past decades, it’s become one of the most quaint, rebellious and “old school” districts of the city. Little brown bars, cafes, noisy marketplaces and vintage stores. As an expat, you’ll want to check out the Heineken Brewery, then walk down Ferdinand Bolstraat. There, you might decide to drink a coffee on the terrace at Gerard Douplein, and experience the buzz of the Albert Cuyp Market. All within close proximity of your serviced apartment!

4. Amsterdam Oost (East) – is considered the hipster neighbourhood. It’s has transformed diametrically over the past 30 years into a place to hang out for art, modern design, or just good food. From your temporary housing, take a walk along the Amstel, enjoy an exquisite fusion dish at Capital Kitchen and perhaps a drink at the Volkshotel rooftop? If you wander down Sarphatistraat, you will end up in the Jewish neighbourhood. Note as a must-see the 19th century Plantage and city zoo. Why not top it off with a delicious meal at the Plantage restaurant?

5. Zuidas/Buitenveldert – chances are, your work is located somewhere near the capital’s business district. Multiple partners have serviced apartments with a great commute to the Zuidas. This area is refreshingly modern with futuristic offices dotting the skyline. Such a contrast to the rest of the city! Enjoy a meal at one of the sleek, upscale eateries or go shopping at Gelderlandplein (a centre containing luxury brand stores). We suggest dining out at Circl (a sustainable restaurant) or Oliver’s. And… when you feel like going into nature: the Amsterdamse Bos (forest) is not far away.