What's On in Amsterdam in October

Amsterdam's canals | © pixbay
Amsterdam's canals | © pixbay
As always, there are plenty of awesome things happening in Amsterdam in October, including several cultural festivals, a FIFA World Cup qualifying match and one of the largest electronic music event in the world. So, make sure to keep your calendar handy and read on to discover what’s going on in Amsterdam during October.


Pietà with the Holy Trinity by Jean Malouel © Public Domain / A self-portrait by Ferdinand Bol | © Public Domain / Amsterdam’s canals | © pixabay / RAI Conference Centre | © Adam Kliczek / WikiCommons

CULTURE | Afrovibes 2017

📅 Thursday September 28th to Monday October 9th

Afrovibes is a multidisciplinary festival which presents work from promising and established African visual or performance artists. The festival is held at multiple locations in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, the Hague and Utrecht, and for its 14th edition will revolve around the theme of Fragile Freedom.

📍Various venues

ART | Maelwael, Painter at the Burgundian Court c. 1400

📅 Friday October 6th to Sunday January 7th

Johan Maelwael was among the first Dutch painters to find employment within the Royal courts of Western Europe and created a highly influential body of work during the late 14th century. The Rijksmuseum will display a large collections of his paintings, illuminated manuscripts and other artworks in Amsterdam this Autumn, including Maelwael’s masterpiece La Grande Pieta Ronde.

Tickets: €17.50

ART | Ferdinand Bol

📅 Friday October 6th to Monday January 8th

From October until early 2018, four of Amsterdam’s most important historical institutes will honour Ferdinand Bol’s work by displaying his work and retracing his influence upon Dutch Golden Age artistry. Besides being a celebrated artist himself, Bol was also an avid collector and supported many other famous painters.

Tickets: Varies by exhibition

📍Various venues

SPORTS | Grachtenrace

📅 Saturday October 7th

Every year, over 100 rowing teams race through Amsterdam’s historic canal belt during de Grachtenrace. This 22km circuit runs from the northern part of Amsterdamse Bos through Amsterdam’s most iconic waterways and then back through to the south of the city.

Tickets: free

📍 The canals

DESIGN | VT Wonen & Design Beurs

📅 Tuesday October 3rd to Sunday October 8th

This large home and interior design fair takes place annually in Amsterdam’s RAI conference centre. The event attracts many leading names from the world of design and there’s always plenty on offer for discerning buyers.

Tickets: €16.50

MONDAY 9th – SUNDAY 15th

© pixabay / © pixabay / The Homomonument © Geert-Jan Edelenbosch / WikiCommons / © pixabay

SPORTS | The Netherlands vs Sweden

📅 Tuesday October 10th

The Dutch and Swedish national football teams will play at Amsterdam’s Johan Cruyff Arena this October. The match is part of the FIFA’s European qualifying rounds and will help to determine which teams will make it through to 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Tickets: €45

TECHNOLOGY | Crying Out Loud Tear Donation

📅 Wednesday October 11th

As part of their ongoing series covering the potential uses of tears, Mediamatic will hold a voluntary cry-a-thon where participants can donate their tears. Afterwards, two artists will transform these watery donations into a drinkable concoctions or crystallised artworks.

Tickets: free

LITERATURE | Read My World

📅 Thursday October 12th to Saturday October 14th

This year, Read My World international literary festival will focus on fiction, journalism and poetry originating from or related to Black USA. The festival is now in its 5th year and will take place in Amsterdam-Noord’s Tolhuistuin.

Tickets: €15

SPORTS | Amsterdam City Walk

📅 Saturday, October 14th

The day before Amsterdam’s annual marathon, thousands of people participate in a series of citywide walks which trails past many famous landmarks. It is possible to take part as an indivdual or team during the event and the walks are divided into several categories relating to the main sights along their routes.

Tickets: varies by event

📍 Varies by route

MUSIC | Homomonument 30 Jaar

📅 Saturday October 14th

To celebrate the 30th birthday of Amsterdam’s Homomonumen, Paradiso will organise a large party on October 14th. Although the events line up is still under development, the party will start at 23.00 and continue until the early morning.

Tickets: €12.50

SPORTS | TCS Amsterdam Marathon

Amsterdam’s yearly Marathon always takes place in mid-October and trails past several of the city’s most iconic sites, such as the Rijksmuseum, River Amstel and Olympic Stadium. There are several shorter routes available for runners if so desired.

📍 Varies by route


© pixabay / | pixabay / | pixabay / | pixabay 

ART | Dutch in Paris

📅 Saturday October 13th to Wednesday January 17th

The Van Gogh Museum’s first winter exhibition will explore several historic Dutch artist’s fascination with Paris and present work created by figures who famously immigrated to the city including Vincent van Gogh, George Hendrik and Mondriaan.

Tickets: €17

SPORTS | Ben Bril Memorial Boxing Gala

📅 Monday October 16th

Ben Bril was a world-renowned Jewish Dutch boxer who survived the Holocaust after being deported to Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. To celebrate his legacy, a memorial boxing gala is held in his honour every year in Amsterdam’s prestigious Royal Carré Theater.

Tickets: from €25 to €75

FILM | Klik Amsterdam Animation Festival

📅 Tuesday October 17th to Sunday October 22nd

Klik is an annual international animation festival which aims to increase the medium’s visibility whilst presenting innovative work from today’s most promising and successful animators. This year, Klik’s program will gravitate around ageing and maturity, but will also include films that deal with many other themes.

Tickets: €70

THEATER | Hans Klok House of Horror

📅 Wednesday October 18th to Sunday October 22nd

At the end of October 2017, Dutch illusionist Hans Klok will be in town performing his magical extravaganza House of Horror. As its name suggests, the show isn’t for the faint hearted and involves many hair-raising tricks and sleight of hands.

Tickets: €54

MUSIC | Amsterdam Dance Event

📅 Thursday October 19th to Sunday October 22nd

Amsterdam Dance Event is recognised as the largest EDM festival and convention in the world and takes place every year over a long weekend in October. Over 2,000 artists will perform at ADE this year at around 120 venues throughout Amsterdam.

Tickets: varies by event

📍 Venues throughout Amsterdam


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FILM | Cinekid

📅 Saturday October 14th to Friday October 27th

This kid-orientated film and television festival at Westergasfabriek is the largest event of its kind in the world and regularly attracts over 50,000 attendees. Hundreds of children’s films will be screened at this year’s Cinekid alongside other fun family activities.

Tickets: TBC

📍 Westergasfabriek, Pazzanistraat 33, Amsterdam +31 20 586 0710

ART | Charlotte Salomon

📅 Friday October 20th to Sunday March 25th

To commemorate Charlotte Salomon’s 100th birthday, the Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam will hold a special exhibition dedicated to her life, work and legacy. Before being murdered in Auschwitz concentration camp, Salomon produced a vivid, visual journal she called Life? Or Theatre? which has since become incredibly influential. All 800 pages of this astounding book will be on display during the exhibition.

Tickets: €15

DANCE | Rule of Three

📅 Tuesday October 24th to Wednesday October 25th

Belgian choreographer Jan Martens and his company will perform this conceptual dance piece backed by music from American producer NAH in Stadsschouwburg theater this October. The performance delves into several diverse themes such as anxiety, rationality and beauty.

Tickets: €27.50

FOOD & DRINK | PINT Bokbier Festival

📅 Friday October 27th to Sunday October 29th

Autumn in the Netherlands marks the beginning of the bokbier season and means that pubs throughout the country will start serving darker, heartier beers. PINT Bokbier Festival coincides with this autumnal shift and brings together scores of bokbier brewers and connoisseurs.

Tickets: €20

CULTURE | Halloween

📅 Friday October 27th to Tuesday 31st

Many spooky events will take place in Amsterdam the weekend before Halloween, including a massive yearly celebration in Westergasfabriek and a costume party at Tolhuistuin.

Tickets: varies by event

📍Venues throughout Amsterdam