Last minute trip to Amsterdam this month-
Keywords– festivals, gluten free, photography, de Pijp…
I’ve lived in Amsterdam for six years now – the city of cycling maniacs, abundant museums, festivals, parks, romantic canals and long summer nights is at its best in August I think. Unfortunately the weather is unpredictable so be sure to bring an umbrella. My favorite neighborhood is de Pijp which is also where I live. For the most part my recommendations for your weekend are centered around de Pijp with an occasional pop over to another part of town. Airbnb.com is the best way to go for booking a place to stay. This way you also get a peak into a real Dutch living space. Be prepared for narrow stairs and cozy balconies.
Friday-Settle into your apartment and then take a stroll around de Pijp and head to the charming gluten free friendly Cotton Cake , a cafe near the bustling Albert Cuypmarkt. You may even catch the end of the market clean up (around 16.00). For a lovely dinner I recommend De Waaghals, an incredible vegetarian restaurant. It’s good to make a reservation as this place is very popular. It’s SO GOOD and I’m not even vegetarian. As the evening begins, grab a blanket (or rent chairs on the website) and see an open air film at Pluk de Nacht, “seize the night” (6-16 August). The festival terrain is located north along the Ij river near the central station. A short film and then the feature film (always in English or with English subtitles and often about artsy off beat topics) start around 21.00. I would get there before 20.00 though or it will fill up. It’s free. You can buy drinks and snacks at a few foods trucks. If you still have energy, on your way home stop at Cafe Brecht for a drink as you enter back into de Pijp. The cafe is designed in an old Berlin atmosphere and is a funky place. It’s open till 1.00.
Saturday-For a simple breakfast and yummy coffee go to Two For Joy at Frederiksplein (open at 8.00). Their cappuccinos will make you drool. Now that you’re enjoying a caffeine high have a look at Huis Marseille (open at 11.00, €8 entry), a small contemporary photography museum housed in a gorgeous old canal house along the Keizersgracht. Once you’ve had your fill of photography take the free ferry near the central station to the NDSM werf which is a part of Amsterdam North and the old shipyards where Europes’ largest flea market is held one weekend a month. All the info can be found at ijhalen.nl, 23&24 August, open 9.00-16.30 and the entry is €4.50. Grab lunch at the Noorderlicht cafe, a hippy artsy place with great food overlooking the Ij. Take the ferry back to town and after a cat nap (you’ll need it), go to de Parade theatre festival just south of de Pijp in Martin Luther King Park (deparade.nl, 8-24 August, €3.50 entry, €2-€10 for a ticket to a show). The atmosphere is incredible, you can eat at one of the many hipster food trucks, enjoy outdoor music, and Amsterdam’s beautiful people. Make sure to buy a ticket to one of the theatre or music shows. Some are in English and many don’t use language at all.
Sunday-Enjoy breakfast at de Bakkerswinkel’s south location which opens at 10.00. You can enjoy delicious scones with clotted cream and jam, egg breakfasts are available as well. The Rijksmuseum just opened after a decade long renovation so a visit is in order I think. It’s open till 17.00, tickets are €15. Make sure to sit in the open garden surrounding the museum and take a walk along the Museumplein where you can also see the modern art museum, Van Gogh museum, and concert building. If you have time for lunch before you go to the airport visit Trust, located along the Albert Cuypmarkt street which will on Sunday be empty of stalls. Trust has organic delicious food and you can “pay as you feel”, no prices are listed anywhere. It’s a relaxed creative slightly off-beat atmosphere. I recommend the open faced sandwich with old cheese and truffle mayonnaise. I dream about that sandwich sometimes! And with that final note you can head to the airport a happy clam! August is my favorite month in Amsterdam but every month has a different selection of fantastic things to do and see. Come back often.