Best time to visit Amsterdam
Here at Favoroute, we consider ourselves pretty lucky to call Amsterdam our home. The city is known for its historical buildings from the Dutch Golden era, 165 canals meandering through the center, art and biking culture, and the diverse community, which continues to surprise us day after day. It’s no surprise the city attracts many travelers to its doorstep. So we’re often asked by travelers: when is the best time to visit Amsterdam? Well, the answer is…it depends. Amsterdam has a lot to offer in every season!
SpringBest time to visit: April-May
- Springtime brings the best out of the people and place. The blossoming flowers create an atmosphere like no other, and luckily, Amsterdam is blessed with its fair share of flora.
- Early April is when travelers flock to the Keukenhof Gardens to enjoy the tulip mania, so you can expect high hotel prices and a busy city. You don’t have to go too far to witness the spectacles of spring in the city. The Tulp Festival in Amsterdam (tulip in Dutch is tulp) plants 500,000 tulips in over 60 locations in the city between mid-April-May. You can catch the Springsnow, the shedding of elm trees that blanket the city in white petals. Also, if you’re lucky, you can surround yourself with Cherry Blossoms at the Amsterdamse Bos in April.
- If flowers aren’t cutting it for you, then stick around for King’s Day on April 27th. You may think this is a 'normal' occasion, but trust us, there is nothing normal on King's Day. On his birthday, the King pays a visit to a particular town in the Netherlands. However, for us commoners, the streets are filled with people garnished in orange ready to party from dusk til dawn.
- One of the downsides of spring is the unpredictable weather. Typically, you can expect mild, sunny weather, however, don’t be surprised when it rains or hails in the middle of the day.
SummerBest time to visit: June-August
- Summer is considered the peak season of the Netherlands. The average temperature ranges between 21-24°C. With the start of festival season, there are plenty of things to look out for: The Gay Pride Parade, Taste of Amsterdam, Amsterdam Roots Festival, Mysteryland, Grachtenfestival (Canal Festival) and so much more. But is this the best time to visit? Consider the following things:
- First, Amsterdam is a very popular destination during the summer months. Schools are out and people are looking to experience that summer European vacation. Nearly 5.3 million people visited in 2014. On the up side, the weather is perfect for traversing the city on a bike, sunbathing in Vondelpark, and hanging out on a terrace. It breathes an energy into the city, but it also makes it very crowded. So keep in mind that hotel prices are high during this time and that bargains are difficult to come by.
- While the winter can deter people from visiting, don’t let the cold scare you off. This is a great time for deals in accommodations and airplane tickets. Imagine walking through Vondelpark in the crisp air, admiring the frozen canals, however, skating is off limits due to the thin ice. Only in the winter can you experience Amsterdam’s Light Festival. The city is illuminated with light installations from various artist, architects, and designers. Lastly, who can forget the markets? Take a gander around the Albert Cuyp Market and warm up in a traditional brown cafe.
- As you can see, Amsterdam offers a variety of options for every season, it just depends on what you’re looking for.
AutumnBest time to visit: September-October
If you plan to visit in mid-September, you can catch some fleeting summer weather. With temperatures dropping slowly, autumn attracts fewer crowds, making the city less congested and giving you more time to wander the streets at your leisure. You can probably get better deals during this time as well. There are several events that you should not miss during autumn: Amsterdam City Swim, De Jordaan Festival, Magneet Festival, and the Amsterdam Fringe Festival.