Tourist traps and what not to do in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is a tolerant city, it seems that everything goes in this city, but that’s not the case. We’ll help you with what to mind, so you can enjoy your stay in our lovely city.


We can say what not to do here, but the best advice would be what you can do. The best place to buy and use drugs is in a licensed coffee shop.

Shops as museums

Some shops are ‘disguised’ as museums, like the cheese museum. If you love cheese like we do, maybe a cheese tasting is more to your liking or visit the local supermarket where you can find the cheese the Amsterdammer eats on a daily basis.

Red Light District

One advice: don’t photograph the prostitutes in the Red Light District.


Cycling in Amsterdam can be an adventure. Although everyone seems to cycle everywhere it’s actually not allowed to cycle everywhere. Don’t cycle through a pedestrian area (although the Amsterdammer seems to do this). The positive thing is that the Dutch like their traffic signs, so mind the traffic signs with a bicycle in a red circle around it, indicating that you can’t cycle here.


You might encounter your first tourist trap at Schiphol Airport, unlicensed drivers will try to lure you to their taxis. You´ll end up paying a (ridiculously) high price at the end of your drive. You can recognize a taxi driver by the blue license plates, a price list visible both inside and outside of the cab and a taxi drivers’ pass on the dashboard. At Schiphol it’s best if you grab a taxi at the taxi stand. Amsterdam’s taxis are among the most expensive in Europe.


Mind the trams, although it might be a pedestrian area, there might be a tram. Also watch out when you cross the street, while walking behind another tram to do so, there might be another tram approaching you.


Don’t eat at restaurants with a propper in front of the restaurant, it’s a tale tell sign of a tourist trap. It’s not a Dutch or Amsterdam thing to do this. There are a lot of different good restaurants in Amsterdam, due the diversity of cultures living in Amsterdam.