You are taking your camera in your hands (if not your life) when you try to take photos of the girls in the RLD---if you are seen, some guy will come out of the shadows and at least grab your camera and throw it into the canal, if not punch you in the face!
Everybody know Amsterdam is THE place to visit the Redlight District Area, but not everybody is comfortable exploring it on your own. At least, I wasn't.
I decided to look for a touroperator who could guide me through the Amsterdam Redlight District, someone who could tell me more about this old part of Amsterdam...
I ended up at this website: www.amsterdamredlightdistricttour.com and ordered a tour for 1,5 hour. During this tour they will show you a lot of cool things!
You will feel a lot more safe, than visiting it by yourself.
The price was approx. €20,-
I could recommend it to everybody!
Sounds exciting doesn’t it boys? I have to say I have actually never bothered with this. I know at least 15 guys who have seen them and they said it was somewhere between boring to disgusting. Some things should just never be put in/pulled out of a sensitive area (male or female). All the guys I know said that the performers looked bored, the men on stage were always ugly freaks and ladies not too good looking. 20 years ago I was told a couple just got on a bed and did it. Now they put on a whole production on stage. Don’t bother. You are in the red light district and can do anything you want except for goats. Actually that’s not true, they sell movies of goats.
Save your money, drink beer and shout at the prostitutes from a safe distance. It’s what I do.
(And rate this tip or I'm telling your wife you were reasearching sex shows)
Located right across from Baba coffeeshop (reviewed in another spot) this place has movies, shops, live shows, anything you want. Not been there myself, but saw many a tourist walking inside in the 2 minutes standing nearby....
We were curious about Red light district of course. The window shopping of women prostitutes. It was a Sunday afternoon we pass through the street watching to some beautiful almost naked and some grotesque looking women. There were more men around obvious but it was not crowded maybe it was too early for the sex... :))
Hobbling on the cobblestones in the red light district I found this sculpture embedded into the sidewalk, between the sidewalk stones of the Ouderkerksplein and the square that surrounds the Old Church in the Red Light District is a fettered bronze/iron sculpture of a hand caressing a breast. This sculpture was left secretly in the wee hours of the night and, over the last 15 years, this same unknown artist has placed numerous bronze and iron statues all over town, anomynously in the night. The identity of the artist has recently been discovered and he is a local doctor who does this public art in his spare time. The City of Amsterdam has since accepted his works as long as the identity of the artist is never revealed. This particular sculpture is a bronze female bust on the pavement in front of the Oude Kerk on Oudekerksplein square. It represents the women of the Red Light District.
The red light district is a must see. The alley ways have glass doors to red illuminated rooms of tantalizing scantily dressed young ladys of all races from very ugly to beautiful. As you walk by they will try to beckon your attention. Its like a circus. you will see crowds of people milling around
from guide tour groups, couples, even families, and of course horny men. Happy window shopping!
Don't miss the RLD. At a minimum, it is an interesting walk-thru to see. The window ladies range from young & beautiful, to older and much heavier (everyone has their own tastes I guess). If you enjoy adult themes, there are plenty of porn/sex shops, and just many things you don't see in the U.S.
We found it to be clean and safe.
There are bars in the RLD. We enjoyed these the most as it was a great place to meet & chat w/ other international tourists. It's an area full of tourists where most are out to have a good time.
If you are interested in more than just window shopping, that is easy too. The universal cost for a girl is 50 Euro. But it is important to be clear about expectations upfront, otherwise everything else becomes an extra charge. (such as don't assume the girl is going to get completely nude, or allow you to touch other parts of her body - unless that was first negotiated). We were pleased w/ our experiences. The sex industry is legal and regulated, that shows.
Also - be warned that window 'girls' with blue lights above them are transsexuals.....don't make an embarssing mistake.
I booked the Dark Amsterdam walking tour with the company on the internet before I went. The tour starts about 8pm from their main office in Damrak. A group of about 12 of us got taken around the red light district and given a potted history of the area and had the most interesting architectural features pointed out. All of which is totally irrelevant as you will be walking down the lanes thinking Oh My God, as you walk past the windows with virtually naked young women wearing flourescent bikinis under UV lights! OMG! lol
The tour included a visit to the Prostitution Information Centre, where the owner, a former Red Light District worker named Mariska Majoor wanted to provide a resource for sex workers and tourists alike. She's an attractive, intelligent woman with a plain speaking manner who happily answered questions and explained the prostitution system in Amsterdam and a little about her life.
I would normally have a few photos linked to this review but it was made quite clear at the start of the tour that any obvious photo taking held the risk of your camera being 'accidentally' bumped into the canal. Believe me you won't have time to look through a lens anyway, just savour the experience. OMG!
Price: € 21
The tour meets daily at 6:45 pm next to the Tourist Information Center directly in front of Centraal Staation. Look for the guides wearing red New Europe T-shirts. €10 Adults/€8 Students. Now I'm not usually a real big fan of "tours" and the whole "tourist" "sightseeing" parts of travelling. I usually like to explore on my own. But this tour was very affordable and had an incredible tour guide who knew her history of the district and was extremely helpful with orientation to Amsterdam. I couldn't recommend any other tour "more" other than the accompanying "free" tour of Amsterdam each morning by the same company. They market the tour as "The Red Light District Exposed" and they certainly do an incredible job talking about every sensual or creepy corner of the district. They advertise with "Intrigued by the Red Light District at night but don't feel safe exploring it on your own?" and they perfectly show the area for its beauty, intrique, history, and that its quite safe - with a two hour walking tour wandering from coffee shops and jazz clubs to sex theaters and smart shops, prostitute windows, and condom shops, ending with free shots and cocktail specials at the infamous Belushi's bar. The guides take you to the Proefokaal and other Historic Bars, the World's first Stock Exchange, a stroll through China Town, window gazing at the Condomerie, to the Old Church, Jazz legend Chet Baker's place of death, the Warmoestraat: hardcore leather neighorhood, S&M Specialist, Smart Shops and a talk about Mushrooms, visits to the Sex Shops, Video Cabins, the Elite Streets, The Bulldog: Amsterdam's first "Coffeeshops", The Prostitution Information Center, the Word's first Sex Theater, the Newmarket, and many more intriguing locations. On the eve of April 8, 2009 - we were luckily blessed with a fabulous guide named "Stacey". Stacey was born in Russia, has lived in Canada, the US, Italy, and Malaysia, and now Amsterdam. She's studying Art History and completing her degree in Asian Studies. Friendly, courteous, and extremely intelligent, she's one of the best guides on the planet. The tour is worth the 10 Euro just to pick her brain about great places to eat, see, and experience nightlife. Top rating 5 stars out of 5. Thanks Stacey!!! We learned about Amsterdam's most revered mushroom shops, told about smart shops, warned about street junkies who try to peddle stuff like detergent and baby powder as drugs. We visited the Waag and Blood street, various famous live sex theaters, the condomerie, the gay bars, the city's first coffeeshop called "The Bulldog" (now a chain), where women rent the windows from, the security cameras and systems, the Prostitute Information Center to give the public information about the district, its services, prices, and safety. We strolled by many windows with much history and information presented by our guide on how it all works. "Red" lights designate women who will charge 50 euros for 15 minutes of sex and 2 positions, and charged extra for anything else. "Blue" lights are hermaphrodites and transgendered women; "blue and red lights" are women who specialize in S&M; there are no pimps and the women work for themselves, and easily choose who they will accept business from and who they won't, as we saw quite a few men turned down. The women can't walk into the street and communicate through the door which only opens from the inside. Most of the rooms have beds, and those with girls on stools have stairs leading up to a room upstairs. Each room is armed with an alarm which if triggered will instantly summon security guards and police. The women in the windows are of every nationality, size, shape, race, and age - all over 18 and all have to have EU citizenship to work. The windows higher above street level are the "classier" and "higher profile" prostitutes, who charge several hundred Euro. We were also toured through a building or mall where women are in the hallway inviting men to their rooms. Most of the prostitutes will only do men and will not service same-sex. The Dutch's open attitude about sex was explained and how "normal" it was in the district. We saw churches, kindergartens, and normal families with children walking the district just as normal as if they were in a shopping mall. The neighborhood has alot of history and beautiful architecture. The Kindergarten apparently is the "most shocking site in the Red Light District" and upon a news station presentation on its existence, interviews with the kids found that the kids believe that the women sell men kisses. Unfortunately the District is closing down. The city doesn't want to be famous for the district, the drugs, and the prostitution. They have essentially won the legislation to make mushrooms illegal in the city, the most exclusive brothel in town was purchased and closed, Over 50 windows have been closed and converted to clothing displays called "Red Light Fashion". Alot of the live sex theaters are closing. The city will be closing down a good percentage of the cafes. Much of the changes in the city will bring back gangs, pimping, trafficking in both humans and drugs, and bring back organized crime. Amsterdam will be lined up for a downturn if the government succeeds in its actions. Concern about the changes was outlined during the tour. I had no idea that this was going on. Its saddening in sorts because its such a big part of Amsterdam's history and attraction, freedom, and expression of "tolerance" and being the most liberal city on the planet. Its estimated that the Dutch government will shot down all marijuana coffeeshops and the Red Light District by the year 2015 being replaced by the "Red Light Fashion" and a "European Soho" filled with high-class art galleries and cocktail bars.
THIS PAGE FOR ADULTS ONLY!
A visitor to Amsterdam nightlife, whatever his itinerary, will be greeted by a somewhat macabre mix of drugs, coffee bars, clubs, pubs, live-sex-shows, peep-shows, window girls, a postmodern paganism.
The “Old Church Coffee Shop,” for example, sits adjacent the Sexyland Erotic Supermarket. This is the reason of the live-and-let-live attitude of the local people.
Mostly in the Red light district, in the narrower alleys the audience consists of mainly foreign tourists on organized tour of the district.
The shops operate non stop, in the shop-windows illuminated by red lights are standing the girls (in most cases foreigners) and waiting for the customers also in daytime.
To take a photo anyway prohibited, the "ladies" exercising the oldest profession, do not like it, rather abscond from the photographers.
Though you might suspect otherwise this section of town seems thoroughly obsessed with sex. All of the houses have been converted into various erotic bars, theaters or other special establishments.
Warning: A study of the Dutch research centre for public health and environment (RIVM) shows that 7 percent of the prostitutes in large cities like Amsterdam and Rotterdam are infected by HIV. But never forget it's the most liberal place in Europe, legalizing sex/prostitution.
Opening times: around the clock
Prices: At peak times (11pm to 2am), when most of the girls are busy, expect to pay as much as €80. Only to walk around and look is FREE.
One of the more notorious attractions to Amsterdam where sex can be shopped for in a variety like flavors of gelato in a gelateria. All puns aside, besides the museums and coffee shops, the district is one of the biggest tourist stops in the city. It is also an area in danger of being closed down, as wealthy financiers outside of Amsterdam are buying out the windows and replacing the women in the windows with tacky clothing fashion. The term "red light district" is not unique to Amsterdam. The term "red light" comes from the red lanterns that railway workers carried often left outside brothels when the workers entered so they could be located quickly for any needed train movement, or for red paper lanterns (thought to be sensual) hung outside brothels in ancient China to identify where one could go. Red has always been associated with prostitution, as early as in the biblical story of Rahab, a prostitute in Jericho, who aided the spies of Joshua and identified her house with a scarlet rope to save her household from the massacre. The Red Light District in Amsterdam, the "De Wallen" or "Walletjes" or "Rosse Buurt" is a designated area for legalized prostitution and the sex industry. It is also one of the world's largest and most well known Red Light Districts. A network of roads and alleys with several hundred small, one-room apartments (300+) that are rented out by sex workers who offer their services from behind a window or glass door. Many of these rooms, windows, and doors are illuminated with red lights. the blue lights represent transexuals or hermaphrodites. Also populating the streets are a number of sex shops, theaters, peep shows, strip clubs, an erotic museum, a cannabis museum, and many cannabis coffee shops. "De Wallen" is located in the heart of the oldest part of Amsterdam stretching several blocks south of the Oude Kerk Church and crossed by several canals. Each of the windows are strung along the streets and alleys, and photography of the windows are discouraged and considered distasteful, and can lead to violent acts towards the photographer and camera. De Wallen is not the only red light district, even though it's the main one. With the areas of Singelgebied and Ruysdaelkade, they form the Rosse Buurt (red light areas) of Amsterdam. The total area is approximately 6500 square meters, limited by the Niezel in the north, the sea dike/Nieuwmarkt in the east, the Sint Jansstraat in the south and the Warmoesstraat in the west. Prostitution takes place within this area in the following streets: Barndesteeg, Bethlehemsteeg, Bloedstraat, Boomsteeg(now closed), Dollebegijnensteeg, Enge Kerksteeg, Goldbergersteeg, Gordijnensteeg, Molensteeg, Monnikenstraat, Oudekerksplein, Oudekennissteeg, Oudezijds Achterburgwal, Oudezijds Voorburgwal, Sint Annendwarsstraat, Sint Annenstraat, Stoofsteeg and Trompettersteeg. This district has existed since the 14th century. Because prostitution is legal in the Netherlands these districts are out in the open and commonly visited by the free-thinking sex-positive Dutch populace and their visitors. Only EU citizens can work legally in the sex industry in Amsterdam, since no working permits are given for prostitution. Streetwalking is illegal. The sex industry here is provided health and social services which are readily available, even though the sex workers, contrary to popular myth, are not required to undergo regular health checks. Studies conducted in 2006 found that about 7 percent of all Dutch prostitutes have HIV/AIDS. Brothel owners and room operators often require health certificates before employing or leasing rooms. Since the women are self-employed, the women rent the rooms from private owners for roughly €100-150 per 8 hour shift, which includes closed-circuit security. Condoms are generally used for sexual contact, although not always with oral sex. Twenty minutes of sex typically costs €50. There are women of most nationalities offering services.
My friend, (jennystravels) thought it would be a good idea to faint while we were walking through the red light district...so thats pretty much my only memory of that place, trying to get us out of there. Also it seemed like all roads led to the red light district,no matter what I was looking for, I always ended up back there somehow, lost and cofused again.
My curiousity brought me here. I had to find out what it was like here. I really didnt even realize that we were in the RedLight District until wewere in the middle of it. It was in the day time and all of the sudden we saw these women standing new the windows and redlights right above the windows. At first I felt a little weird to even look at the woman but afterwards I got over that. I wasnt the only woman walking around here as its more of a tourist spot than anything else. I was also told that these women charged alot but I heard one lady tell a potential customer 40.00euro. He wanted to give her 20.00euro and she slammed the door in his face. Some of these women are actually very beautiful.
I also found entertaining the men than come and gawk at these women. You cant take pictures here so beware.
We also came back at night. By this time there were alot more people in the red light district. Its easy to get lost here too because these streets are more like alley ways that are curvey. One street leads to another.
There are also tons of sex shops here. You can buy videos for any kind of fettish you may have. There are toy stores and Live sex shows. We actually went to a live sex show called the Moulan Rouge live sex show. It was 25.00 euro and personally not worth it. Bottom line its a 45minute show.
The red light district has been around since the 13th century and its a billion dollar industry. Its also 5% on the Dutch economy. Very Interesting.
This area is famous for its window prostitution, which is legal in Holland. The windows are illuminated by red lights, hence the name. Though you might suspect otherwise this section of town isn't really that seedy, and it's a common sight to see a busload of tourists take an organized tour of the district. Besides the windows the area sports various 'erotic' bars and theaters.
Keep in Mind:PHOTOGRAPHY IS NOT ALLOWED!YOUR CAMERA MIGHT EVEN BE DESTROYED!