This is really the only complaint I have about Amsterdam! You HAVE to watch where you are walking because NO ONE cleans up after their dogs! It is truly DISGUSTING!!! It would be nice to be able to look around at the beautiful architecture rather than piles of dog *** everywhere!! UGH!!
The Anne Frank House is the most popular tourist attraction of Amsterdam.
No wonder, that during the day long waiting lines grow at the entrance.
So, get up early and be there at 9AM sharp (or visit in the early evening hours).
BTW Anne Frank's real house before her family moved to the Achterhuis hideout is located at the Merwedeplein.
While you never plan to have a problem.
I have never experienced it, however some people have reported scams about people pretending to be policemen to con you out of your euros.
I figure it never hurts to know what a real policeman/woman looks like. Their cars, vans and motorcycles are hard to miss…white with blue and orange. Trust me you can’t miss them!
One other thing I found unique and very visitor friendly, is they have one police department. Unlike at home where you may have several different types, all looking different (local police, county police, state police, etc). No matter where you go in the country the all look the same here.
Also I have found them to be very polite and helpful.
Around the Central Train Station works are in progress.
A new busstation will be build at the North side of the building with a pedestrian area at ground level and a motorway underneath.
Furthermore new metro and (high speed) train tracks are under construction.
The metro works needs digging and the train works need overpasses to be build.
At times expect heavy construction works going on. It's is well planned, but may confilct with your plans at times.
In light of the many Danger/warning tips about Amsterdam, I'd like to show another view.
I don't perceive Amsterdam to be unsafe. Here's why:
I travelled a lot to Amsterdam for about 2 years when I worked there in the center, just behind Leidseplein (a famous nightlife location). As a woman alone, I walked or took a tram every day to my workplace from Central Station. Often late at night as well. I was never bothered by anyone, simply steered clear of suspicious individuals or groups. And I never felt unsafe.
I suppose that exudes a certain confidence which makes you less of a target. Or I've been lucky.
Unfortunately, a lot of tourists are attracted to Amsterdam because of coffeeshops and Red Light District. Both are on the fringes of legality. And so one shouldn't be surprised to be confronted with more crime. Or rather: don't complain too much, because one shouldn't seek out trouble, no?
I am a 20 year old female, and I walked all over the centrum by myself at all times of the day and night -- and was never offered drugs, never asked to follow anyone and not harrassed by anyone even once! Just look like you know where you are going, don't draw attention to yourself and for christ's sake don't carry your life savings with you in an easily accessible pocket!
I thought I had everything I needed so that I wouldn't have to go to a T/Info centre. I did, but I didn't know where the Bus station was to get the bus to Muiderslot castle. It wasn't either of the two by Central Station, I was told by a Bus driver, Out of town. So, I went to the Info/centre outside central station, and it was jammed full of people. I took my number, and to my horror, saw that there were 50 people infront of me. I stayed for a little while, in that time, nobody had moved, the centre was grossly understaffed, and you couldn't help yourself to information. Wasted time, and I never got there. My Hotel told me where to catch the Bus, but I didn't have time left to visit. Try to avoid if possible.
Yeah, there were a couple of very persistant drug dealers selling their wares, but what about the guy who walked alongside me for about 10 minutes insisting that we get a beer together? Then a coffee. Then ____. No matter what I said, he wouldn't leave me alone. I began to ignore him, then after following a little while longer he trailed off on his own. These guys are probably harmless, but I didn't know what to expect. I don't think that I stood out as a vulnerable tourist- I had on a shoulder bag, there was no camera or map hanging out, I was just walking down the street.
Just stay on busy streets or duck into a shop, or just ignore them, I guess.
On walking around the Canals, I came across a stall with lovely bunches of Flowers. Some of them I had not seen before, so I took a photo.
There was only myself and the Dutch stall holder, and as he walked past me, he deliberately knocked into me, I guess hoping to ruin my photo. I would like to know what he muttered in Dutch!!
There were no signs saying not to take photos, so I was within my rights, there was no need for his rudeness!!
In Amsterdam by night is not really hard to meet some strange dealers, most of them are in groups of 3-4 persons.
Remember, becareful of your money!
Usually they are not aggressive, but pay attention when exiting from the "centruum" (the heart of the city). Beyond the red light district is full of dark streets, only pickpockets and pushers.
Don't do any *** like singing/screaming, smashing bottles, urinating in the streets, etc... Dutch policemen are really strict and won't tolerate vandalism of any kind.
Remember, Hollanders are cool people and if you show some respect then they will easily help you. Don't be rude and keep in mind the good manners so try to use words like "please"or "thank you", however, you know what we are talking about.
Have your passport always with you. Keep it in a safe place, surely not in external pockets or in a bag.
Don't try to visit everything the first day. Take it easy! Buy a map. Touristic guides are o.k., yes usualy they cost a lot, but you will have a good booklet, useful to quickly find out many interesting places, saving your time and money.
Drink something when in a coffee shop and have a good time there. It's not just a smoking or trading place.
To have a 'smoking-day' in Amsterdam can be very pleasant, but can turn into a nightmare if you abuse with too much smoke or spacecakes. At the coffeeshop 'Homegrown Fantasy' they have some skunk-based cakes that starts playing with your mind after an hour or even 2 hours depending on what have you eaten before. Beware, if the effect is too strong for you then is better to sit down somewhere and drink or eat something sweet.
Beware at the passing bikes and trams(everything moves so fast and you are very very slow when stoned, so take care.)
Remember, nothing is free and Amsterdam isn't a cheap place to stay. Is hard to be there without money so is better to carry a Credit Card for emergencies.
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