I have to say that the Dampkring is by far the best coffee shop, in my opinion.
I remember walking on Singel on my second day in Amsterdam, continuing my journey on the search to discover as many coffee shops as i could. I decided to take a look at my map and see what coffee shop was close to me and i saw that the Dampkring was closest to me so that was next on my list. I walked up the street and saw it. I have to say that once you see a coffee shop in real life, it feels so weird, it almost feels as if your in wonderland, like a dream. I opended the door and walked in through the door. I noticed alot of people sitting in the bar having a heniken, others were sipping hot chocolete, and the remaining majority were smoking pot, freely. i headed straight to the dealer's front counter and noticed that the menu was right in front of me. I greeted the two Dutch dealers and began looking at the menu. I couldn't believe the selection they had and what was cool about there menu was that it was also a chart camparison as to what type of feeling you'l get, it's also rated by stars five being the strongest and obvisoly one being the least strong although i didn't see any ones, two, or three's, they were all top notch gear. Before i even got to the menu i noticed a large splif sitting in the counter.
Dress Code: ( NO DRESS CODE )
The Dutch dealer asked me what i liked to smoke, i was overwhelmed by the question so i don't remember what i said. He offered me a hit and i accepted. i lifted the twenty five gram joint up, he assisted me by lighting it, i took a genourous hit, held it inside for a bit and exhaled. WOW, let me tell you that was the strongest joint i have ever smoked in my life. I kid you not once i exhaled less than a half a minute i felt as if i was going to pass out. I was so stoned. The two dealers were asking me if i was ok, i think i told them i was fine. I remember one of the dealers telling me that i was as white as a ghost. I began sweating, hard core. The other dealer steped out of the counter and headed for the bar, he came back with some sugar candy and told me to eat it and i should feel better. Rest assure i didn't pass out. It was very intense. I will never forget that day. Anyways i stood back in line and purchased my cannabis and tipped them genourously. I bought a lighter from there to remind me of that day.
There are quite a few coffeeshops that also sell alcohol, the Best place is De Kuil which is very close to central station. This place also sells some killer weed and hash so can get a beer and light up a joint with no problems. It is very nice place to chill and perhaps shoot a game of pool or play backgammon while toking on the vaporizor available for use.
Another good one is the Rookies, near the Leidseplein. There is two pool tables here and also a full bar, I have heard they have good weed but I have not tried any there. It has a nice vibe and it's pretty big with lots of tables to relax, drink and have a nice smoke.
Also, De Dampkring, La Canna, and Smokey Coffeeshop are a few others.
Any Coffeeshop is great to go to for a night out. I went to several EVERY night:) As many as there are you could stay for months and go to different ones every time!
Dampkring is always packed with people, it is a great place to chill, if you are lucky enough to get a seat!
Dress Code: Casual
Hundreds of coffeeshops - bound to be one you like. Struggled a bit this time. Went to recommended ones and won't again. Abraxas looked cool until the music got loud and bouncy. Not conducive to chilling. Global chillage was shut at 5pm on Sunday! De Dampkring was packed. Please send me a quiet, safe dimly lit place to get quietly stoned and switch off. 1 year ago was impressed by the Greenhouse just over the first canal on Damstraat. Still - a few yet to explore. PS I recommend being a lightweight - off my trolley on 2 euro worth of smoke.
This place was a tiny coffee shop/bar off one of the streets near the Leidseplein. They served alcohol as well as ganja which was different. The place was decorated in bright fun colors with a giant mushroom in the middle of the room. LOOK OUT FOR THE WHITE WIDOW....It did me in!
Dress Code: Casual
After sampling many coffee shops in the Dam and enjoying many visits i finally found two that i fell in love with, hence my return visit in the new year.
And Ricks Bar in the red light district also serves beer which is unusal for many coffee shops, Ricks has any easy going atmosphere with many travellers coming through its doors (you can ususally get chatting to some really intersting people and of course get some of the best weed you will ever smoke.
Spent many an afternoon here before taking a wander to some some of the fantastic bakeries in Amsterdam. Enjoy but be carefull of pick pockets
Dress Code: Casual dress but hey pretty much anything goes round here.
Putting a brief bit here about the Amsterdam coffeeshop scene, though it's not limited to the "Nightlife" category. As for other evening adventures -- bars, clubs, and so forth, we can't say much on that subject since my wife and I got most of that our of our systems years ago when a little (LOT) younger. Partly due also to the short Winter days, fairly cold weather, and wearing ourselves out during the day running around.
I won't go into a lot of detail about the coffeeshops here, on the grounds it may tend to incriminate me as they say in the U.S., LOL. Just kidding. They are, however, a distinct part of the uniqueness of Amsterdam from any city in the World, and that's no small thing. For some it's the prime reason for going there, typically for more of a younger crowd. If you venture into one you don't necessarily have to purchase their primary wares, with all selling at least juice or other beverages, some selling beer (but not all), and some with a food menu. We popped into one near the Dam (The Abraxas) due to its 30-minutes of free Internet use with the purchase of any drink or other item, and I was suffering from E-mail withdrawal.
Interesting tidbit to note is that The Dampkring, one of the more famous ones and with a photo included here, was used as a location for filming a scene from the movie Ocean's Twelve, the sequel to the modern remake of the original Ocean's Eleven. Also, that selling/smoking cannabis is technically not "legal", but termed "tolerated". A strange, linguistic distinction since all shops are tightly licensed, periodically inspected, and controlled as to the amount they are supposed to have on premises at a given time.
There are quite a few Websites, some very extensive and fanatical, devoted to the coffeeshop subject that are easily found with any 'Net search.
Dress Code: You're kidding, right?
Dampkring consistantly takes home prizes from the Cannabis Cup for their weed. Small but centrally located. Nice bar to sit at, cool music, Indian God Shiva artwork sets the tone here.