The cold scares many travelers from visiting Amsterdam in the wintertime. However, with the right clothes, coming well prepared, with an adventurous spirit and following these tips, I am sure you will forget the cold and will enjoy the beauty Amsterdam, especially during winter.
Ice skating in Amsterdam
Ice-skating is our national pride. Thus if you visit Amsterdam in the wintertime a try in the ice-rink is a must. If you do not know how to skate, do not be afraid to try it. You are in the best place to learn it! as everybody is willing to help you.
There are several spots where you can skate in Amsterdam: RAI Winterwonderland (see below), the Museumplein ice rink (closest to easyHotel) and the Jaap Eden IJsbaan (year-round ice-rink used by locals, so if you feel like becoming a prof!)
Winter food: just another reason to eat!
The Netherlands has a long culinary tradition and there are many good and strong dishes that go pretty well in winter. The most famous dish is stamppot, which is basically a mix of mashed potatoes (our favorite ingredient; whether boiled, mashed or roasted) with vegetables. There are many versions available such as andijviestamppot (endive lettuce), hutspot (carrots and onions), boerenkoolstamppot (shredded kale) and zurekoolstamppot (sauerkraut).
Another big winter favorite is the traditional Dutch pea soup which primarily consists of peas (not surprising), pork, celery, onions, leeks, carrots and often potato (yes, our favorite ingredient!). We even have a nickname for this dish: snert.
Besides the savory dishes, the Dutch love sweets (e.g. chocolate sprinkles, stroopwafels, vla). Moreover, there are some typical sweet winter dishes such as poffertjes. Poffertjes are a traditional Dutch batter treat. Resembling small, fluffy pancakes, typically served with powdered sugar and butter. Nomnomnom! The best winter treat is the oliebol (translated: ball of oil).
This treat is served for New Year’s Eve, but can be bought from the beginning of November on the streets. This ball of oil is like a small donut ball coated with powdered sugar.
Amsterdam Light Festival
Every year, throughout the winter season, Amsterdam is illuminated with hundreds of installations and luminous statues in a temporary exhibition spread throughout the city.
The festival is held annually, and each edition is dedicated to a different theme. Various artists, designers and architects from all over the world participate in the festival with works of art made of light and related to the theme of the year.
From the 30th of November 2017 till the 21st of January 2018, we will explore the 6th edition of Amsterdam Light Festival. During this annual art festival the lights will change the Centre of Amsterdam in an open light museum! Art works and installations by contemporary international artist, designers and architects relieve the town and the canals of Amsterdam.
The Amsterdam Light Festival is always divided over two routes. The walking route and the canal cruise route, which is a must when visiting Amsterdam during winter time.
Winter Wonderland RAI 2017
Almost every city in the world has a trademark Christmas event. As of this year Amsterdam has its very own Winter event and that within a 15 minute walk from easyHotel at the RAI Congress Centre.
From 21 December – 1 January the RAI event halls are transformed to ‘The place to experience that absolute Christmas feeling’. There is too much to do: the illuminated ice rink, the ultimate view of Amsterdam from the 50 meter high ferris wheel and warming up in the winter wellness with sauna’s and jacuzzi’s.
Take a stroll through the traditional Christmas market and have a drink in the beer village with the best dj’s and live musicians. Visit the circus show, participate in the marshmallow experience or take pictures with the iconic Coca-Cola Christmas truck.
The Amsterdam Winter parade promises you the ultimate Christmas feeling in different winter worlds.
Not looking to do anything special? No worries! Amsterdam is beautiful just to walk around in during wintertime. See the Christmas decorations and stroll at night through illuminated Amsterdam.
Too cold to stay outside? Go and visit one of the museums or indoor activities that Amsterdam has to offer. Visit your easyHotel reception to get local tips from one of our receptionists.