Amsterdam is a diverse city and, as you might expect, boasts many things to see and many ways to see them. For first-timers, taking a tour is a good option, either by boat through the canals or by bike through the cobbled streets. We’ve compiled a list to help you narrow down the options to some of the best tours in Amsterdam, whether you’re looking for history, culture or food.
The best bike tours in Amsterdam
Joy Ride Tours
This small, family-run company specialises in bike tours that take you out of the city and into the charming Dutch countryside. If you’re looking to stay in town, don’t worry, Joy Ride Tours offers plenty of city-based private tours too. A good getting-to-know-Amsterdam tour is their 3–4 hour private city tour.
The Yellow Bike tour company is the most popular bicycle tour in Amsterdam, and their bright yellow bikes make it the most eye-catching, too. They offer large and small city tours, which differ by the distance covered and the time taken.
History Tours in Amsterdam
World War II Tour
This tour is for World War II history buffs, or for those who want to brush up on the details. Let the experienced and knowledgeable guides walk you through the occupation of Amsterdam, the persecution of the Jews, and the city’s ultimate liberation by the Canadians.
Amsterdam Photo Safari
If you enjoy taking photos and learning about photography then Photo Safari may be the tour for you. Tim Collins, a professional photographer, will guide you through some of Amsterdam’s best shots while filling you in on the city’s history.
Tours in Amsterdam for Food Lovers
A non-touristy, food-related experience in the Jordaan neighborhood, the Eating Amsterdam tour isn’t just about the food in Amsterdam, but also the untold stories and interesting facts about the city’s culinary history. With special food tastings (such as bitterballen and apple pie), it’s a great introduction to typical Dutch foods as well as a fun way to experience Amsterdam. Tours last about 3.5 hours and will leave you feeling extremely full.
The Heineken brewery was established in Amsterdam as long ago as 1864. Today, you can go inside the old brewery to learn everything you ever wanted to know about this tasty pilsner, including the Heineken family’s history. A self-guided tour is provided, which you can expect to take about 1.5 hours.
Walking Tours in Amsterdam
Sandeman’s New Europe Amsterdam Free Tour
Taking the Sandeman’s Free Tour is a great way to get your bearings once you arrive in Amsterdam, and not only because it’s free (ok, not completely free — there’s a €3 reservation fee). For 3 hours they will take you around the city, explaining the sights, both historical and modern.
Walking Amsterdam’s Red Light District
Go behind the infamous curtains of the Red Light District with this walking tour offered by the Prostitution Information Center (PIC), led by a former ‘working’ woman. She will give you a glimpse into the world of Amsterdam’s most notorious district and answer all the questions you’ve never dared to ask.
A small tour company that offers four walking tours, either in groups or privately. Their three-hour Quintessential Amsterdam Tour is a great introduction to the city, taking in everything from the Red Light District to the Flower Market. The other tours, including the ‘Rock and Roll Tour’ and the ‘Golden Age Tour’, are perfect if you’re looking to learn a little more about one area, or history, of the city.
Canal Tours in Amsterdam
Classic Boat Tours
With three beautifully restored wooden boats, the fleet of the Classic Boat Tours is certainly impressive to look at. Many of the tours include food, which makes for a romantic dinner on the water. The tours tend to be slightly pricey but worth it if you’re looking for a unique angle to enjoy the city from.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.