My *Curated* List of Amsterdam Musts

Mallory Brander
April 23, 2022

“Got any good Amsterdam recs?” The question you will inevitably be asked by friends visiting, family passing through, and future perspective study-abroaders. We’ve seen my recs from a resident, but after three months in Amsterdam, I’ve built up quite the list of recs myself, with my roommate even making an itemized list and ranking system. Here, I’ll give you the synopsis and my absolute must-sees. Enjoy!


I’ve had a lot of amazing food here, but the meal that stands out above the rest is definitely Vegetarisch Restaurant De Waaghals, a little place located in De Pijp co-owned by the sweetest husband-wife chef duo. De Waaghals has a tasting menu that changes weekly based on the freshest produce that they can find. 

Honorable mentions include: 

M’Adam, a really nice restaurant located at the top of Adam tower: This place is great for celebrations or if you want to treat yourself. An amazing tasting menu, fantastic atmosphere, free polaroids taken of your whole table, and a crazy fun bar/DJ. 

Factory Girl, a cute little cafe in De Pijp with insane brunch and great coffee: Cute kitschy atmosphere and delicious food, great for catching up with old friends.

Calle Ocho, a delicious place to satisfy your Mexican food cravings: With some of the best tacos and atmosphere in town, this place is a must-eat. 



Amsterdam is one of the art capitals of the world and is chock-full of fantastic museums. My favorites are definitely the Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, the Moco Museum, and the Van Gogh Museum. But for the art historians, you could wander around the Rijksmuseum for hours. 



The vintage/second-hand shopping in Amsterdam is absolutely unreal but Episode has got the take the cake for me. From selection to prices, it simply can’t be beat. 

For any plant moms (or dads) out there, one of my favorite spots for plants is a little shop in the west called Flowers and Powers. Aside from the adorable name, they also have a good selection and fairly good prices

If you’re looking for a new read, there’s a fantastic anarchist bookstore that sells lots of English novels and informative pamphlets. It is called Het Fort van Sjakoo, but don’t let the name scare you, the guy that owns the place is a total sweetheart with a passionate disdain for all things-hierarchy. 



If you’re a Jazz fan, or even if you are just looking for something to do on a weeknight, look no further than Alto. It is one of the best Jazz bars in town, and with its intimate feel it is always a good place to stop in, grab a table, and listen to some pretty incredible music. 

In terms of concert venues, Melkweg definitely tops the charts. I scoured the site every week and got to see some of my absolute favorite artists in this chill, intimate venue. 


On a sunny day, you can inevitably catch me and my friends laying out in a park somewhere. The two best are easily Vondelpark and Westerpark. Word to the wise: invest in a good picnic blanket.  

For my film-stresses out there, if you are looking to get film developed I can’t recommend Key-Color enough. It’s in a super convenient location, surrounded by cute cafés, and the people that work there are all lovely. Oh, and they do a bang-up job of developing your film lickity-split. 

If you are looking for a solid meditation station, look no further than the Conscious Club. I’m biased because I worked there during my time in Amsterdam, but the owners and all of the teachers are absolute gems who will undoubtedly open your third eye…or at the very least help you stretch your biked-out glutes. 

Like I said, this is a very compact version of all of the amazing things to do and see during your time in Amsterdam, but I hope it serves as a good jumping off point!

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Mallory Brander

<p>Hey everyone! I'm Mallory, a 20 year old originally from Tulsa, Oklahoma. I'm currently a junior at UNC Chapel Hill majoring in Business and minoring in Social and Economic Justice as well as studio art. I'm a people person who loves all things travel so I'm beyond ecstatic to be studying abroad in Amsterdam this spring!</p>

Home University:
University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
Tulsa, OK
Business Administration
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