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Where to Stay in Amsterdam: 13 Best Areas & Places

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Amsterdam is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world for a valid reason. With its rich history, stunning architecture, and lively nightlife, this city will surely want you to return for more. Here is a full guide on where to stay in Amsterdam.

However, choosing where to stay in Amsterdam can be difficult for those unfamiliar with the city and its best neighborhoods. Here, we explore the best areas and neighborhoods for tourists and visitors and what they offer.

Enchanting Dutch architecture at Rijksmuseum Garden, Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

TL;DR: Places to Stay in Amsterdam

TL;DR: Areas to Stay in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Our Amsterdam neighborhood guide will break down each neighborhood option and include our top accommodation picks for each area.

  • For First-Timers/Tourists – Amsterdam-Centrum
  • For Budget Travelers – Oud-Zuid
  • For Luxury Travelers – Canal Belt
  • For Nightlife – De Wallen
  • For Families – Plantage

Where to Stay in Amsterdam

1. Dam Square

Dam Square with Royal Palace of Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

In the historical center of Amsterdam, Dam Square is one of the best places to stay. It can be found around the canals, where it has been for hundreds of years.

This area is home to some of the best Amsterdam hotels, and you’ll be within walking distance of nearly every tourist attraction in the city center, as well as Amsterdam Central Station (Amsterdam Centraal Train Station).

This area can be very busy with tourist crowds, so plan and be prepared when visiting the Dutch capital. There are many green areas where one can relax during their visit and major attractions everyone should experience at least once.

As a result, many visitors will find themselves staying around this area as there is plenty to do, such as visiting the Royal Palace of Amsterdam, the Red Light District, and the Anne Frank House.

Best Places to Stay in Dam Square

2. De Wallen

Boats in De Wallen Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Nearby, the city’s best hotels and accommodations are concentrated in De Wallen, which, though notorious for being the site of Amsterdam’s famous Red Light District, you’ll still find several significant historic buildings, including the Old Church and its neighboring vicinity, which was one of the world’s first stock exchanges.

De Wallen and the Red Light District are very popular places to stay in Amsterdam for nightlife and partying since there are many coffee shops, bars, and nightclubs nearby, as well as in the heart of the Red Light District. If you want to party the weekend away, you’ll want to stay in this area of Amsterdam.

Given that this area is better suited for first-time visitors and younger generations, De Wallen has plenty of mid-range hotels and hostels.

Places to Stay in De Wallen

See Related: Spots for the Best Views of Amsterdam

3. Jordaan

Jordaan Street Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The Jordaan neighborhood is easily one of the best places to stay in Amsterdam to enjoy the cozy cafes and restaurants. This area where many artists have lived and where a lot of tourists spend their time walking up and down the canals and popping into different shops is considered one of the best places for exploring culture where, in addition, you’ll find an abundance of history as well.

Jordaan has a wide range of shops, including vintage stores (which are numerous). The area around Jordaan is known for several distinct types of businesses, such as restaurants and bars.

Jordaan is an excellent choice for individuals looking for a pleasant place to stay in Amsterdam. Check out the experience from our Pulitzer Amsterdam review of what it’s like staying in this iconic neighborhood.

Places to Stay in Jordaan

4. Nine Streets (Nine Straatjes)

Nine Streets (Nine Straatjes) Amsterdam

Nine Streets is a great place to stay in Amsterdam for a number of reasons. First, it’s centrally located within the city, meaning you can visit many attractions.

It’s also home to some of the best shopping streets in Amsterdam. You’ll find everything from high-end boutiques to small, independent shops selling unique items.

Nine Streets is one of the most picturesque areas in Amsterdam. The narrow, cobbled streets are lined with quaint cafes and charming bars, making it the perfect place to walk around in the afternoon. If you’re looking for a lovely place to stay during your trip to Amsterdam, the Nine Streets should be at the top of your list.

Places to Stay on Nine Streets

See Related: Day Trip to Zaanse Schans, Volendam and Marken

5. De Pijp

People walking along De Pijp Market

The De Pijp neighborhood of Amsterdam is a bustling and lively district popular with tourists and locals. The area is known for its lively after-dark scene and many restaurants, cafes, and bars.

Albert Cuyp Market is also located in the De Pijp neighborhood and is a must-visit for those looking to experience a genuinely Dutch market. For those looking to find a place to stay in Amsterdam, De Pijp is an excellent choice for getting a local experience.

Places to Stay in De Pijp

6. Oud-Zuid

Oud-Zuid Street Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The Oud-Zuid neighborhood in Amsterdam is a favorite for tourists and visitors alike. The area is known for its well-preserved architecture and exquisite homes. It’s also one of the most expensive neighborhoods in Amsterdam, making it a popular choice for those looking to stay in a luxurious area.

The Oud-Zuid neighborhood is close to some of Amsterdam’s best museums in Museum Square (Museumplein), including the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum. It’s also an excellent option for families, as you are close to several parks, including Beatrixpark, Sarphatipark, and Vondelpark.

You’ll want to grab a bike rental from here since you’ll be about a 10-15 minute bike ride to Amsterdam’s city center. If you want a charming neighborhood vibe away from the hustle and bustle of the city center, this is a great option for a family-friendly stay in Amsterdam.

Places to Stay in Oud-Zuid

See Related: Best Coffeeshops in Amsterdam

7. Oud-West

Aerial view of Oud-West
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

As one of Amsterdam’s oldest neighborhoods, Oud-West is a favorite for visitors and locals. It offers a mix of old and new, with narrow streets, cozy cafes, and trendy boutiques all next to modern apartment buildings and high-rise offices.

The area has an energetic vibe and is perfect for those who want to be in the heart of the action. There is no shortage of things to do in Oud-West, from exploring its many museums and art galleries to strolling through Vondelpark, Amsterdam’s largest park.

Oud-West is also home to some of the city’s best nightlife, with various bars and clubs to suit all tastes. You’ll definitely want to check out the Foodhallen, which is an excellent indoor food market featuring cocktail bars, street foods, and fine dining.

Places to Stay in Oud-West

8. Old Jewish Quarter (Jodenbuurt)

Old Jewish Quarter (Jodenbuurt)
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The Jodenbuurt is Amsterdam’s Old Jewish Quarter, one of the city’s most interesting and special neighborhoods. It’s an easy ride from Amsterdam Central Station via the underground metro. You can also walk here in a short 15 minutes.

It is home to a number of important synagogues, as well as the Jewish Historical Museum, which is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Amsterdam. The neighborhood is known for its lively nightlife and many bars and clubs.

The Old Jewish Quarter is an excellent location for a canal cruise since you’ll be right near the Amstel River, which will be the gateway to all the best canals and is close to several iconic canal houses. If you are traveling as a family, you can easily access the Artis Royal Zoo from here via bike.

Places to Stay in the Old Jewish Quarter

See Related: Day Trips from Amsterdam, Netherlands

9. Museum Quarter (Museumkwartier)

Museum Quarter (Museumkwartier) Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Museum Quarter continues to be an underrated place for tourists, mainly because of its proximity to museums. It is home to some of the city’s most famous museums, including the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum, and Stedelijk Museum, all considered the best museums in Amsterdam.

Outside the apparent museums are great restaurants and nightlife within walking distance, and the iconic Pieter Cornelisz Hooftstraat features some of the best designer shops in Amsterdam.

This area is centrally located and has easy access to Vondelpark, making it very family-friendly and combining the concept of relaxing stays to enjoy the quaintness of Amsterdam and the chance to enjoy the city’s bustling nightlife.

Places to Stay in Museum Quarter

10. Amsterdam-Noord

Amsterdam-Noord Market
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Amsterdam-Noord is a district in the north of Amsterdam that is popular with artists and hipsters. It has a lot of character and is a great place to explore. Some highlights include the Amsterdam-Noord Cultural Center, the NDSM Wharf, and the A’DAM Tower.

This is an excellent location if you are looking for affordable accommodation. You’ll be outside of the canal ring and north of the Ij River, but it’s an area that features a number of modern hotels and vacation rentals.

If you are worried about location, stay near the metro station, Amsterdam’s fastest metro train line, which goes directly into several key areas in the city center. Your best bet here is to find a vacation rental, if available.

Places to Stay in Amsterdam-Noord

See Related: Best Parks in Amsterdam to Visit

11. Westerpark

Westerpark Amsterdam

Westerpark is one of the best neighborhoods in Amsterdam for travelers on a tight budget. The hotel options in the area are affordable, and the neighborhood is centrally located, making it easy to explore all that Amsterdam provides.

If you’re seeking a lovely spot to enjoy in Amsterdam, look no further than Westerpark. This park is nearby AMAZE, the immersive museum experience, as well as nightlife.

If you’re traveling with kids, you can’t miss visiting the Boerderij Westerpark, a petting zoo/farm in the park. It’s a fantastic option for budget travelers, so be sure to add it to your list of places to stay in the city.

Places to Stay in Westerpark

12. Canal Belt (Grachtengordel)

Canal Belt (Grachtengordel)
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The Canal Belt (Grachtengordel in Dutch) was constructed around 1730 and enclosed the city center in a series of concentric Canal Rings. The Canal Belt is special because of its lovely historic buildings, canal houses, charming cafes, and romantic bridges at every step.

Amsterdam’s inner canal comprises four channels: Singel, Herengracht, Keizersgracht, and Prinsengracht. This picturesque canal area is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Look no further than the Canal Belt if you’re looking for the best places for a couple’s getaway in Amsterdam.

With its charming Canal Houses and bridges, the Canal Belt is one of the most romantic places in Amsterdam. And because it’s in the city’s heart, you’ll be close to all the best attractions.

Places to Stay in Grachtengordel

See Related: Tips for Riding a Bike in Amsterdam

13. Plantage

Plantage Zoo Amsterdam

Plantage is an easy-to-find residential neighborhood perfect for a family with children looking to spend time together. It is a relaxed, artsy district opposite the Old Jewish Quarter (Jodenbuurt). Many green parts will prove helpful for children. In short, Plantage is an undervalued part of Amsterdam.

Plantage offers activities like the Micropia Science Museum, Artis Royal Zoo, and more low-key cafes and restaurants. The Plantage neighborhood in Amsterdam is also a great place to take a walk or cycle with your family.

Many parks are here, like the Hortus Botanicus Amsterdam, the Wertheimpark, and Oosterpark. If you’re looking for an off-the-beaten-path area to explore in Amsterdam, Plantage is the perfect place to start.

Places to Stay in Plantage

Things to Know About Amsterdam’s Neighborhoods and Accommodations

Amsterdam Reguliersgracht canal with iconic Dutch architecture and serene waterways, sRGB color space.
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Amsterdam is my favorite European city for a variety of reasons. The main reasons are the culture, fantastic architecture, and the wide variety of dynamics within the city center.

It’s no secret that Amsterdam’s city center is one of its main draws. Amsterdam has many neighborhoods, each with its distinct character and vibe.

  • The Jordaan neighborhood has a quiet, low-key vibe and is home to some of the best restaurants in Amsterdam (including De Jaren, which serves traditional Dutch cuisine).
  • The Canal Ring is where most visitors stay and features beautiful architecture along its canals. The Anne Frank House museum and many shops and cafes are here.
  • The Red Light District is known for its adult entertainment venues. Still, plenty of great restaurants also serve traditional Dutch dishes like bitterballen—fried meatballs with mustard sauce—and oliebollen—fried dough balls filled with jam or apple slices.
  • If you’re looking for a more modern neighborhood, the Eastern Docklands is home to many new hotels and restaurants.

Types of Accommodation in Amsterdam

Traditional Amsterdam house with black facade, Dutch gable, and bicycle, showcasing iconic architecture and local culture.
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

There are a number of different types of lodging options in Amsterdam that travelers can choose from.

  • Hotels: These are the most common type of accommodation and come in all shapes and sizes. They range from small boutique hotels to huge 5-star resorts on the outskirts of town.
  • Hostels: Hostels are another popular budget option, especially for younger people who want to meet new friends while traveling around Europe. And don’t worry if you’re not staying at one yourself—Amsterdam has plenty of hostel bars where you’ll always find an interesting mix of guests to talk with!
  • Apartments: If you’ve got a family or want extra privacy during your stay, an apartment may be right for you! Many great options are available throughout Amsterdam, including ones close enough that everyone in your group can join every day for walks together. Just remember that apartments aren’t usually furnished, so plan accordingly before deciding which property suits your needs during this trip.
  • Houseboats: One of Amsterdam’s most unique accommodation options is the houseboats. These boats have been converted into homes and can be found throughout the city’s canals. While they may not be suitable for everyone, it’s definitely something to consider if you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind experience during your time here.

Is Accommodation in Amsterdam Expensive?

Bronze statue and De L'Europe Hotel in Amsterdam, showcasing Dutch architecture and cultural heritage
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Amsterdam is expensive, and there’s no doubt about it. But that doesn’t mean you can’t save a few euros when you visit.

One of the best ways to do this is to avoid hotels in the central city center (especially during significant events) and look for other accommodation options like VRBO. You’ll also get a more authentic experience of Amsterdam. Another tip is to visit during the off-season when prices are lower.

The average cost of a hotel in Amsterdam is about $180 per night, but budget options are available for those looking to save a little money. If you’re on a tight budget and want to find a low-cost place to stay, look for apartments or hostels away from the center of town. If you don’t mind being farther away from the city center, finding a place that costs around $100 per night or less is possible.

You can also save money on transportation while staying in Amsterdam: walk or bike! You’ll be able to see much more of this beautiful city if you don’t rely on public transport or taxis (which are very expensive).

FAQ

Which part of Amsterdam is the best to stay in?

Suppose this is your first time visiting Amsterdam. In that case, Amsterdam Centrum is a great area since the city center is close to all the major tourist attractions, restaurants, and cafés. You can split Amsterdam Centrum into smaller regions that differ in their atmospheres. If you want a more local experience, we’d recommend staying in De Pijp, Oud-Zuid, or Westerpark.

Where can I stay in Amsterdam on a budget?

The best place to stay for an affordable price in Amsterdam is Oud-Zuid, which is often grouped within the city’s Museum District. You’ll be outside the canal ring but have the charm of a local neighborhood and still be in a somewhat central location. This area also features easy access to Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport.

Where can I stay with my family in Amsterdam?

Plantage or the Old Jewish Quarter of Jodenbuurt are the ideal locations in Amsterdam to unwind with friends and family. You’ll find beautiful parks and gardens, opera houses and concert halls, and museums dedicated to art or Jewish history. In addition, there’s one of Europe’s finest zoos, Artis, and the city’s oldest flea market, Waterlooplein Market.

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