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A summer's day in Amsterdam | © pixabay
A summer's day in Amsterdam | © pixabay
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14 Reasons to Visit Amsterdam This Summer

Picture of Tom Coggins
Updated: 9 May 2017
With summer fast approaching, we went ahead and put together the following guide covering awesome events happening in Amsterdam over this June, July and August, in order to prepare culturally curious travellers for the up coming months. As always, there is a veritable plethora of exciting things going on in the Dutch capital including outdoor film nights, street parties and world-class exhibitions.

Chris Beekman – De Stijl Defector

📅 Saturday, April 8 to Sunday, September 17

As 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of de Stijl, many cultural institutions in the Netherlands will honour the movement’s origins, legacy and influence by holding special exhibitions. The Stedelijk Musuem, Amsterdam, for example, will continue its yearlong de Stijl program by presenting work created by an often overlooked member of the movement, Chris Beekman.

📍 The Stedelijk Musuem, Museumplein 10, Amsterdam

Vondelpark Open Air Theater

📅 From Friday, May 5 to Sunday, September 10

Amsterdam’s largest and most iconic urban park, Vondelpark, features its very own open air theater, which organises performances throughout Spring and Summer. Entry is free (although donations are welcomed) and most plays, concerts and events at the theater are performed in English.

📍Vondelpark Openluchttheater, Vondelpark 5a, Amsterdam +31 20 428 3360

Vondelpark’s open air theater
Vondelpark’s open air theater | © Daviddje / Flickr

Martin Scorsese – The Exhibition

📅 Thursday, May 25 to Sunday, September 3

In order to honour American director Martin Scorsese’ groundbreaking contributions to cinema, EYE Filmmuseum will host an entire exhibition dedicated to his oeuvre over summer. Hundreds of props, footage and documents from Scorsese’ private collection will be on display at the museum, including items from his most famous works such as Taxi Driver and Raging Bull.

📍EYE Filmmuseum, IJpromenade 1, Amsterdam +31 20 589 1400

Media Installation at Martin Scorsese – The Exhibition
Media Installation at Martin Scorsese – The Exhibition | © Deutsche Kinemathek / M. Stefanowski, 2013 / The Eye Film Instituite

Artis Summer Nights

📅 Saturday, June 3 to Saturday, August 26

Every Saturday during June, July and August, Artis will be open until sundown, meaning that guests can wander around the zoo’s paddocks and enclosures whilst enjoying the last remnants of the summer sun. The zoo will also organise live performances throughout the season.

📍Artis, Plantage Kerklaan 38-40, Amsterdam

A parrot at Artis
A parrot at Artis | © Arjan Haverkamp / Flickr

Films With a View

📅 Tuesday, June 6 to Tuesday, August 29

From June onwards, Pllek screens films every Tuesday on its beachside terrace, which overlooks the River IJ. Pllek often invites local industry professionals and film journalists to introduce these movie nights or even present their favourite flicks.

📍Pllek, Tt. Neveritaweg 59, Amsterdam +31 20 290 0020

Pllek’s beachside terrace
Pllek’s beachside terrace | © BakerlooTheReal / Flickr

Open Garden Days

📅 Friday, June 16 to Sunday, June 18

Once a year, the private gardens hidden inside Amsterdam’s canal belt open to the public. Many of these charming sanctuaries date back t0 the 17th century and are among the most peaceful spots in the city. For more information make sure to check out Museum van Loon’s website.

📍Grachtengordel, Amsterdam

Museum van Loon’s garden
Museum van Loon’s garden | © Àngels / Flickr

Pitch

📅 Saturday July 1

Amid Amsterdam’s many annual electronic music festivals, Pitch has always stood out above the rest due to its emphasis on more mainstream variants of EDM. This year British post dub-step luminaries Mount Kimbie are set to headline alongside many other cutting edge artists such as Dutch hard hitters Fatima Yamaha and Palm Bomen II.

📍 NDSM-Werf, Amsterdam

Mercedes-Benz FashionWeek

📅 Thursday, July 13 to Monday, July 17

Every six months, Mercedes-Benz FashionWeek comes to Amsterdam. This weeklong event attracts thousands of industry professional and showcases designs from leading couturier working within the Benelux region. The fair will take place inside one of Amsterdam’s largest cultural venues- Westergasfabriek.

📍Westergasfabriek, Pazzanistraat 33, Amsterdam

Mercedes-Benz FashionWeek Amsterdam 2007
Mercedes-Benz FashionWeek Amsterdam 2007 | © Guido van Nispen / Flickr

Hortus Festival

📅 Wednesday, July 19 to Monday, August 28

Several botanical gardens throughout the Netherlands will host a six week long chamber music festival this summer. In Amsterdam, these events will take place inside de Hortus Botanicus in Plantage and allows guests to experience contemporary classical music whilst marvelling at the garden’s wonderful botanical menagerie.

📍Hortus Botanicus, Plantage Middenlaan 2a, Amsterdam

A butterfly at Hortus Botanicus
A butterfly at Hortus Botanicus | © mirabelka szuszu / Flickr

Pride

📅 Saturday July 29 to Sunday, August 6

Amsterdam’s Pride celebrations kick off on July 29 and continue for an entire week. Hundreds of events will take place throughout Amsterdam over this week, including open air cinemas, massive street parties, and of course, an afternoon long canal parade that begins on Korte Prinsengracht.

📍 Locations throughout Amsterdam

Amsterdamse Bos

📅 Open throughout summer

Considering the large number of beautiful urban parks inside Amsterdam, it is sometimes easy to forget about the city’s biggest, most diverse recreational grounds, Amsterdamse Bos. During summer, this massive landscape park hosts many incredible events and is among the best places in the city to enjoy sunny spells, thanks to its picturesque lakes, waterside gardens and charming woodlands.

📍 Amsterdamse Bos, Amstelveen

Amsterdamse Bos in summer
Amsterdamse Bos in summer | © Matthew Pennell / Flickr

Pluk de Nacht

📅 Wednesday, August 2 to Saturday, August 12

Pluk de Nacht is the largest open air film festival in the Netherlands and presents arthouse and independent films from around the globe. These films are screened near Centraal Station, on a large, rocky peninsula called het Stenen Hoofd. The festival is completely free, but it is always worth booking a seat before arriving.

📍Het Stenen Hoofd, Westerdoksdijk 705-C, Amsterdam

Urban Beaches

📅 Open throughout summer

Despite being over 20 kilometers from the Dutch coastline, Amsterdam is blessed with many urban beaches that capitalise on the city’s aquatic location. Many of these sandy sanctuaries are extremely central and overlook Amsterdam’s iconic canals, whilst other are located slightly further slightly further afield on the banks of the River IJ or IJmeer sea.

📍 Locations throughout Amsterdam

Grachtenfestival

📅 Saturday, August 12 to Monday, August 21

Midway through August, Amsterdam’s canal belt hosts an almost city-wide festival dedicated to contemporary classical music. In order to accommodate these performance the festival will install barges on Amsterdam’s canals and organise events inside the city’s most esteemed concert venues.

📍Locations throughout Amsterdam