When it comes to visiting Amsterdam, often the first thought comes to all the coffee shops, but next to all these popular tourist attractions, there are fantastic alternatives to make the experience of Amsterdam really pass!
What I enjoyed the most in all my trips to Amsterdam was the food. It’s really different from for example the pizza and pasta culture in Italy, or the German bratwurst and sauerkraut, and I love the diversity of it! But not only the types of food you can find in Amsterdam, but how you can experience it thanks to the city that really makes it!
Sounds awful to many, but if you go Amsterdam, eating raw herring is practically mandatory! The Dutch specialty is refreshing and quite an experience, often served with some soft white bread, onions, and some gherkins. No need for sauces or even cutlery, it’s fantastic just the way it is! In most cases, they offer you this small piece of deliciousness in small fish shops. Since Amsterdam is by the sea, you get the freshest fish possible!
Now what really got me addicted were the so called “Stroopwafels”. Crispy, round, thin waffles with caramel in the middle – sounds oh-so-simple, but they are absolutely great! You can find them everywhere: in cafes, supermarkets, small shops on the streets. Of course they are more of a snack, so I suggest you get some tea or coffee and find some Stroopwafels to go with it!
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We all know pancakes, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like them. But you would be wrong if you think that the Dutch “pannenkoeken” are the same as the American ones – in fact, they are much thinner and bigger than the ones you make at home, but they are not comparable to the French crêpes either, since they are just a little thicker. It’s really fun to get some of them with a little powdered sugar, jam, or even bacon and cheese, if you like it heartier. I, for one, like the hearty ones with bacon, cheese, and even an egg.
For a small snack, I also like the so-called “Jodenkoeken”, famous shortbread cookies sold in a tin can are great. You get them pretty much everywhere and they are the best for food on the road and for the urgent need for food that seems to surprise you ever so often.
You may have already guessed what I’m getting at – grab a basket, grab a blanket and all of the above, maybe add some nice and refreshing drinks and have a picnic! For example, it is fantastic to take some bread with the fish and make little snacks out of it. And here comes the twist to the whole picnic thing: bring a boat! Get on a boat and ride along the canals with your picnic! It is best to enjoy a meal, especially on a sunny day, while floating on a boat! I mean if that’s not inviting enough, I don’t know what will.
For me, food is one of the things I love most in Amsterdam, and there is an endless choice of bars, pubs, cafes, restaurants, etc. I’m more of a snacker, so my final suggestion for a trip to Amsterdam is the Upper Pancake House. It’s a pancake lover’s dream!
About the Author:
Flavio is an avid traveler who has lived in many countries including France, England, Finland, Brazil and currently lives in the small town of Kreuzlingen on Lake Constance.