Crossing the Street - Trams, Amsterdam
Beware your feet. You will want to walk the entire city...twice! It's easy to do since the city is relatively small.
Be nice to your feet, jump on a tram once in awhile.
Bring moleskin for blisters.
You could be walking along or crossing the street and next thing you know a tram comes along and almost knocks you over. This also happened to me when cycling though it's easier to escape them on a bike.
Be very careful as you walk around, the locals have a rhythm with their bikes and you can easily find yourself on a bike path instead of the walking path. You are more likely to annoy them than anything, but if you are suddenly startled you may jump out of their way and into the path of a street car... very bad. There are a few deaths a year from tourists not paying attention to the traffic.
The biggest risk to your health and bodily integrity in Amsterdam are bikes and trams.
Amsterdam trams are generally very big and yellow (OK, some are blue & white and others bedecked in ads) and should be easy to avoid. About 10 tourists a years fail this test and end up being shipped to their point of origin in a bag/box. Trams will obey traffic rules so that all you need to do to avoid ending up underneath one is obey normal traffic rules. DO NOT do like the locals and cross when you think it's safe. We've all had years of experience and schooling in Amsterdam street survival and thus qualify as professionals.
Amsterdam bikes exist in almost every colour of the rainbow and obey no single traffic regulation. The bike is Amsterdam's most efficient mode of transport and most of the people on them are in a hurry to get from A to B, myself included. This means that most of us don't bother to ring our bells before we run you over. It's not that we're hostile to tourists. We believe in natural selection and do our best to prune out those visitors to Amsterdam who fail to understand that a red tarmac path with a bycicle painted on it every 25 meters is really reserved for bycicles. So stick to the sidewalk and enjoy the town.
Crossing the road! Look out for cars, then trams, then bikes...
Also, give Dutch weed some respect. It's strong and could effect you more than you think. If you swallow it in the form of shakes or cakes - expect the effect to last for hours.
Amsterdam is fun - don't take the michael. Give respect to the locals and the ladies... you can spot a British tourist a mile off!
A bit obvious, but worthy of a mention as it refers to your mortality.... Watch out for those large metal objects that may (depending on where you are coming from) suddenly squash you because you are using the English version of the green cross code, think life, look right, left and right again. :-))
Watch out for the trams and bicyclists... personally, I recommend that you pay more attention the trams since you will probably survive a bicycle collision... and watch out for people with two heads... you won't see eye to eye on anything...
Amsterdam Traffic Hazards
Just like in any other busy city traffic in Amsterdam can be hectic.
Something most first time visitors don't know is the the hazard of bicycles!
Most cyclists aren't too friendly when it comes to pedestrians standing in their way.
When you hear a bicycle bell behind you, STEP ASIDE FAST!
Also remember that most of the time trams and taxis are in a hurry as well.
Watch out for the bikers and the tram! Vehicles in Amsterdam do not stop for pedestrians so you have to watch out when crossing a street. Especially the tram and the bikers have no mercy for a tourist getting in their way.
None to speak of... except, watch out where you walk downtown. Streetcars and cars share the main roadway, and motorbikes and bicycles share another lane, then comes the side walk for pedestrians. However, if you're a bit under the influence and walking it's not unusual to confuse the bike and walking areas as they're both cobblestoned. The bikes DON'T stop for pedestrians, so watch out!
WATCH OUT !!!!!
Many people get killed each year from Trams in Amsterdam.
Watch out for Bicycles, Trams and Buses too !
Last year a few tourists died when they crossed a street and where hit by a tram (public transportation)