Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam
The best way to get there is to get a flight from anywhere to Schiphol, the airport in the south of Amsterdam. It's very close to the city. As soon as you arrive there, you can get a taxi (not very recommended), or downstairs, get every train that passes and has a destination to Amsterdam. Just take care and don't fall asleep, since you might dismembark on Berlin!!!
Getting around is really easy. You can walk inside and gaze everything, rentor buy a bicycle (very cheap and practic). You can also use the public transport which is PERFECT. Choose either trams, metro, buses. In every staion there is a label where the tram stops and passes, so you can find easily where you want to go. Also take a look at the time it writes that the tram passes, because it's very precise.
Amsterdam boasts one of the best airports in the entire world - Schiphol. The latest stats I've seen for air traffic tell that Amsterdam has direct connections with some 219 cities of the world (85 countries respectively). I flew there from Berlin and found no problems whatsoever. Getting to Amsterdam from the airport is no problem either with regular shuttle buses operated by KLM heading to the Central Train Station. Train connections are also excellent, and the Netherlands are covered by a considerable quantity of rail passes (Interrail - the one I'll be using in summer, Eurail - for non-European residents, and local passes for those who do not live in BeNeLux or in the Netherlands).
The only thing I've learned it that by hiring a car one can create for himself/herself more problems than convenience. It's much simpler to use public transport (which comes in the forms of trams and buses), hire a bicycle (and travel in the way the locals do) or hop on a boat and see Amsterdam from a different angle while still getting to the destination of your choice at the same time.
I came via Schiphol airport. A large but effective airport - and I had no problems.
In this picture you see most of it! The Central station for train and subway, buses and trams. You see the canal for the boats and you see bicycles (there are many). Of course walking is also a good way of transportation :-)
Fly! Schipol Airport is outside the city and is a great airport. I love the big comfy chairs they have in there for when you are stuck there waiting for your flight. There's practically a shopping mall in this place so you should find something to keep you amused. There's also an internet place in the upstairs area of the terminal where I spent some time checking my email on VT ;)
My only complaint is that every flight I have taken from this airport has been delayed :(
Take the trains into the city from the airport, or whatever other destination you choose.
Walk around the city or ride a bike for the more adventurous. I didn't use public transportation so I can't help you there.
Schiphol is one of the main airports in Europe. (I think it is the fourth) and there are flights from almost all of the world. There is a railway line from the airport to the Station Centraal, situated in the very heart of the city.
The rail network is dense and links are assured to the main cities in Central Europe. Unfortunately trains are usually packed and are expensive. There are no fast speed trains like in other European countries.
There are also a lot of motorways, but traffic is also very dense. The Netherlands are, after all, the most densely populated country in Europe. Driving your own car will be the fastest option if you come from one of the neighbouring countries, but there are not a lot of parking places in the city.
Maybe it is a topic, but your bike will be the best way to move around the city. There are plenty of opportunities to hire it. If you bring your owns, take care of thieves. It is said that the older it looks like the more chances you have it won't be stolen.
Anyway bicycle-riders are kings in the Netherlands and take care not to walk on the bike-alleys: people are sometimes rude and impatient with people who do it, specially with the tourist.
The old town is rather small and you can also walk everywhere.
I flew to Amsterdam and then when I got there I got on the double-decker train (amazing to see) and a tram, then I walked to my accomadation. - It may sound complicated but it wasn't as bad as it sounds.
By foot or trams. If you can ride a bike then it's a good idea to hire one or take one with you.
Schiphol Airport is located about 15km from Amsterdam, and can be easily reached by train (20 minutes from Central Station at f7,-) or taxi (f 65,-).
Several of the major hotels operate a shuttle bus service.
For general inquiries you can call Schiphol Airport at +31 20 601 91 11.
In Amsterdam public transportation is well organized.
There is a good tram network, which will pretty much get you anywhere. Tickets can be bought in advance at the post office or tobacco shops, or in the tram itself (slightly more expensive).
With the Circle Tram (tram no 20) you can travel to all of the city's sights without changing lines.
Another good way to take in the sights is to rent a bike.
Amsterdam has a metroline as well, running North-South through the city, but with only a few stops in the center this has limited value for visitors.
Schipol Airport is a magnificant one, I like its Duty Free Shops.Amsterdam is known of its quality Diamond.
Use the tram or a bike.You can also take a Taxi Tour for about 2 hours.We were 8 people, we took a van and paid $70U.S. total.
I flew from London on British Air. Schipol is the coolest airport I've ever been to expept there's no good beer bars in it. The train from there to Central station runs every ten minutes and it's impossible not to find your way to it. Very simple and quick. Cheap too!!
Schiphol Airport is the international airport and is linked to the centre of Amsterdam with a good train service from the arrivals area.
Parking a car in Amsterdam is AWEFUL much better to go with public transport such as the train.
Trams and buses all leave from the front of central Station.
There is the museum boot which has a set schedule and takes you past many of the museums and on the ways shows you the beautiful canals of the city. The day ticket also gives you a discount on the museum entrance fees. There are six stops on the boots route and you can go freely all day with the day ticket.
You can hire a bike of course and that allows you to explore the city freely.
Schiphol Airport is one of the 5 biggest airports in Europe. So if you want to catch your plane don't - like us - spend too much time in the shop/restaurant area but start walking to your gate early enough! We had to rush because the distance got bigger and bigger and bigger! And when we sat down in the plane - it had to wait for 45 minutes of course ;-)
Amsterdam as a great airport: Schiphol Airport six miles from the city, it is one of Europe's busiest airports.
The best way getting around Amsterdam, is the way most of the people of Amsterdam do. Bycicling.
Schiphol is one of the best airports in Europe. Maybe it is a PR-slogan of Schophol marleting specialists, but I did like the airport indeed. Airport is connected with railway network (local trains are just part of common domestic railway). If you came to Central station from Schiphol, or directly from your departure city, go out and you will see this beautiful building, where the station is situated.
Bicycle/Motocycle/Car/Your own feet. All these options are equal on the streets of Amsterdam. I have never seen a bicycle road broader than a road for cars before visitng Amsterdam...
While I flew into and out of Amsterdam and it makes a good gateway city I remember it as one long flight onto LAX.
Local train into the city, and local buses. However, I always try to walk as much as I can in any city, because I enjoy the sites and sounds and the little things that it allows you to see.
I had a 6 hour layover at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam. This was February 08. Schiphol had changed a lot, it's an enormous gigantic place now with loads of things to do. So many shops, lounges with all sorts of technological facilities, food courts etc. Even a new compact hotel called YOTEL opened where the bookings start at 4 hours minimum giving you a small room with more than only the main necessities. Wi-fi connection, flat screen tv, complete en-suite bathrooms and very comfy beds. etc. It's meant to be located in the transit area. I myself took the train to Amsterdam instead, was very easy, they will probably advise you otherwise at the information desk but if you've been to Amsterdam before it's totally doable. Buy your ticket return at the airport and allow at least half an hour for travel. The trains are every half hour too so it's easy.