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Where to Stay in Amsterdam as a First Time Visitor

AMSTERDAM - I Amsterdam slogan in Amsterdam Netherlands. Located at the back of the Rijksmuseum on Museumplein the slogan quickly became a city icon.

The capital of the Netherlands, Amsterdam is known for its elaborate canal system, narrow colourful houses and cobbled streets, all reminiscent of its origins as a small fishing village in the late 12th century. Since then, Amsterdam developed into one of the most important ports in the world and has continued to grow and evolve into many neighbourhoods and suburbs that make up the city that we know today.

Boasting a level of charming that every other European city can only admire, Amsterdam is famously ‘gezellig,’ a Dutch quality that translates roughly as ‘cosy.’ While the city definitely gives off homely vibes, it by no means compromises on the qualities that make it such a great city. There are plenty of things to do in Amsterdam such as full of post-industrial buildings, art galleries and breweries, treasure-filled museums and vintage-filled shops, Amsterdam has an abundance of culture and entertainment, and that’s not even mentioning the quirky clubs, street art, and vibrant drinking and dining scenes. Explore the numerous bike paths and narrow streets and you’ll find something new on every corner.

Choosing where to stay in Amsterdam as a first-time visitor can be overwhelming, mainly because the accommodation options are plentiful and among the most exciting in Europe! While having too many options isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it is worth doing your research beforehand to make the right decision for you.

We will cover off all types of Amsterdam accommodation options from Hostels to luxury Amsterdam hotels as well as how to decide where to stay in Amsterdam, the best Amsterdam hotels, best places in Amsterdam to visit, the best places to stay in Amsterdam, hotels near Amsterdam attractions, Amsterdam neighborhood guide and many more.

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Whether you like hostels or campsites, converted old canal houses or houseboats, quirky boutique B&Bs or luxurious apartments, Amsterdam offers it all catering for every type of traveller and budget. To help you make a start on your search, here are our recommendations for where to stay in the Dutch capital.

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The Old Centre – Where to stay in Amsterdam close to everything

If budget and time are tight, the Old Centre is the best area to stay in Amsterdam. Close to all the main sights, great restaurants and bars, local shopping and popular nightlife areas are just a short walk away. Although close to the red light district, the area has great transport links to Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport, Amsterdam Central Station and to the rest of the city centre, and the streets are lined with cheap hotels.

Take a walk around the area and discover Dam Square, the hub of the Old Centre. Some people might consider the proximity to the red light district as one of the areas to avoid staying in Amsterdam but i personally love this area, the red light district is only really a few streets wide.

Wander the charming canals and explore Kalverstraat and Nieuwendijk, the Old Centre’s shopping streets. Stumble upon sights such as the imposing Royal Palace, Oude Kerk (Old Church) and Rembrandt’s House in the busy Waterlooplein square where there is a daily flea market!

Best Places to Stay in Old Centre Amsterdam –

Cheapest Hostels in Old Centre Amsterdam:
Flying Pig Downtown
Heart of Amsterdam
Stayokay Hostel Amsterdam Stadsdoelen

Budget Hotels in Old Centre Amsterdam:
Royal Taste Hotel Amsterdam
Travel Hotel
Hotel De Mallemoolen
Hotel Mevlana

Mid-Range/Family Friendly Hotels in Old Centre Amsterdam:
Doria Hotel Amsterdam
Rho Hotel
XO Hotels City Centre Amsterdam
Rokin Hotel

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Old Centre Amsterdam:
NH Collection Amsterdam Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky
Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam
Hotel Twenty Seven
Luxury Suites Amsterdam

Old Centre Amsterdam - Where to Stay in Amsterdam as a First Time Visitor

Museum Quarter – Where to stay in Amsterdam on a budget

For a more up-market stay, head Southwest of the city centre and you’ll find the Museum Quarter. An artist’s paradise, this district is home to world-class cultural gems such as the Van Gogh Museum (which is the biggest of its kind), the Rijksmuseum (the largest art gallery in Holland boasting works by Rembrandt and Vermeer), and Stedelijk (a haven for modern art).

Here you will find boutique and top-end hotels, exclusive shopping options, a plethora of eateries and bars, and the popular Vondelpark in all its glory. Although there are no canals here as the district is outside of the canal loop, there is plenty to do for every kind of traveller.

Best Places to Stay in Museum Quarter Amsterdam

Cheapest Hostels in Museum Quarter Amsterdam:
Stayokay Hostel Amsterdam Vondelpark
Amsterdam Hostel Orfeo
Amsterdam Hostel Uptown

Budget Hotels in Museum Quarter Amsterdam:
Trianon Hotel
Aston City Hotel
easyHotel Amsterdam City Centre South

Mid-Range/Family Friendly Hotels in Museum Quarter Amsterdam:
Cityden Museum District City Suites
Hotel Van Gogh
Hotel Verdi
Hotel Washington

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Museum Quarter Amsterdam:
Conservatorium Hotel
Amsterdam Marriott Hotel
Hotel Seven one Seven
Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht

Museum Quarter Amsterdam - Where to Stay in Amsterdam as a First Time Visitor

Jordaan- Best neighborhood to stay in Amsterdam

If you’re looking for charm, culture and chilled vibes, Jordaan district is all three rolled into one. A former working-class neighbourhood, you can still see the original charm from its past lining the streets and sense the humble and welcoming atmosphere from the locals. Perfect for quiet getaways, unwind away from the busy city centre and explore the sights close by such Stedelijk Museum or Anne Frank House.

Take a walk and discover how the district has now become a hub full of eclectic restaurants and bars, cutting-edge art galleries, quirky shops and boutique hotels. Renowned for its photogenic townhouses, impressive culinary scene, and relaxed pace, you can see why this bustling neighbourhood would be an appealing place to stay in Amsterdam.

Best Places to Stay in Jordaan Amsterdam – 

Cheapest Hostels in Jordaan Amsterdam:
International Budget Hostel
WOW Hostel Amsterdam
Hans Brinker Hostel Amsterdam

Budget Hotels in Jordaan Amsterdam:
Hotel Nadia
Hotel Mevlana
Hotel Amsterdam Inn
Quentin Arrive Hotel

Mid-Range/Family Friendly Hotels in Jordaan Amsterdam:
Clemens Hotel
The Times Hotel
The Hoxton, Amsterdam

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Jordaan Amsterdam:
Pulitzer Amsterdam
The Toren
The Dylan Amsterdam
Canal House

Jordaan Amsterdam - Where to Stay in Amsterdam as a First Time Visitor

Vondelpark – Best place to stay in Amsterdam for tourists

Experience a different side of Amsterdam by staying in the lungs of the city, Vondelpark. A large, leafy space perfect for relaxing with locals, cycling and sitting in the sun watching free concerts, this elegant neighbourhood gives you the best of both worlds. As well as offering this big green space, Vondelpark is close enough to everything that you can get a great experience of Amsterdam without the busyness of the city.

Situated south of Jordaan and the canal loop and west of the Museum quarter, Vondelpark is a short walk away from the Film Museum and open-air theatre, designer shopping streets, artisanal food court and three of Amsterdam’s most popular streets. Along Overtoom, Kinkerstraat and de Clercqstraat, you will find more restaurants and bars than you’ll know what to do with.

Best Places to Stay in Vondelpark Amsterdam – 

Cheapest Hostels in Vondelpark Amsterdam:
Amsterdam Hostel Orfeo
Hans Brinker Hostel Amsterdam
Budget Hotel Tourist Inn

Budget Hotels in Vondelpark Amsterdam:
Quentin England Hotel
Trianon Hotel
Hotel Titus
Marnix Hotel

Mid-Range/Family Friendly Hotels in Vondelpark Amsterdam:
Hotel City Garden Amsterdam
Hotel Piet Hein
Hotel Europa’92
Hotel Roemer

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Vondelpark Amsterdam:
Sir Albert Hotel
Banks Mansion
Ambassade Hotel

Amsterdam in the Jordaan in the Netherlands

Amsterdam Noord – Cheap places to stay in Amsterdam

For a more modern area, opt to stay at Amsterdam Noord. Just a free ferry away from Central which takes 5-10 minutes, you can get a completely unique experience of Amsterdam away from the city centre without compromising on convenience or location. In this up-and-coming district, there are great accommodation options in every price category, modern cafes, outdoor bars where you can eat inside old shipping containers, and Amsterdam’s monthly flea market.

Although you may feel like a world away from the capital’s old-worldly charm, Amsterdam Noord is a great place to stay if you have been to the city before and want to experience it in a different way.

Best Places to Stay in Amsterdam Noord

Cheapest Hostels in Amsterdam Noord:
Stayokay Hostel Amsterdam Zeeburg
Generator Hostel Amsterdam

Budget Hotels in Amsterdam Noord:
Old Nickel
Hotel Old Quarter
Hotel Jimmy

Mid-Range/Family Friendly Hotels in Amsterdam Noord:
Bastion Hotel Amsterdam Noord
Movenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre
Hampton by Hilton Amsterdam Centre East
Lloyd Hotel & Cultural Embassy

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Amsterdam Noord:
Sir Adam Hotel
The Hendrick’s Hotel
Monet Garden Hotel Amsterdam
Grand Hotel Amrath Amsterdam

Amsterdam - Where to Stay in Amsterdam as a First Time Visitor

De Pijp- Best place to stay in Amsterdam for nightlife

Just a short tram ride south of Centraal station takes you into one of the most cosmopolitan and vibrant districts of Amsterdam, De Pijp. Full of long narrow streets packed with brunch restaurants, Middle Eastern eateries, trendy bars and old-school pubs, this is one district where you won’t be short of food and drink options. With a picturesque urban layout, you can explore the neighbourhood and find many things to do. From the iconic Albert Cuyp Market and Heineken Experience to Sarphatipark, De Pijp, with its affordable lodging options, might just be one of the best places to stay in Amsterdam.

Best Places to Stay in De Pijp Amsterdam

Cheapest Hostels in De Pijp Amsterdam:
Hans Brinker Hostel Amsterdam
Amsterdam Hostel Uptown
Amigo Budget Hostel

Budget Hotels in De Pijp Amsterdam:
Sarphati Hotel
Iris Hotel

Mid-Range/Family Friendly Hotels in De Pijp Amsterdam:
Aalborg Hotel Amsterdam
The Arcade Hotel
Hotel Notting Hill
Ibis Styles Amsterdam Amstel

Affordable Luxury Hotels in De Pijp Amsterdam:
Sir Albert Hotel
Hotel Okura Amsterdam
InterContinental Amstel Amsterdam

De Pijp Amsterdam - Where to Stay in Amsterdam as a First Time Visitor

Old Jewish Quarter – Where to stay in Amsterdam for relaxation

The Jewish Quarter of Amsterdam (Jodenbuurt) also called Plantage, has a long and troubled history. For over 350 years, this was the center of Jewish life in Amsterdam, until World War II. The buildings remaining after the Holocaust are now maintained by the Jewish Cultural Corner. The Portuguese Synagogue remains, along with the Jewish Historical Museum and the Holocaust Memorial.

The area now is filled with parks and tree-lined boulevards, as well as the Hortus Botanical Gardens and the Artis Royal Zoo. This is one of the best areas to stay in Amsterdam for travelers seeking a respite from the tourist crowds, but still wanting easy access to the Amsterdam city center.

Best places to stay in Old Jewish Quarter

Cheapest Backpacking Hostels in Old Jewish Quarter
Hostel Centraal
Generator Amsterdam
Stayokay Hostel Amsterdam Stadsdoelen
Intersail Hostel – Christina

Budget Hotels in Old Jewish Quarter
Hotel Park Plantage
Hotel Hortus
Armada Hotel
Barbacan Hotel Amsterdam

Mid range Hotels in Old Jewish Quarter
De Jonker Urban Studio’s & Suites
The Lancaster Hotel Amsterdam
Quentin Zoo Hotel
Hotel Rembrandt

Family Friendly Hotels in Old Jewish Quarter
Monet Garden Hotel Amsterdam
Holiday Inn Express Amsterdam – City Hall
Pension Homeland
Amsterdam Tropen Hotel

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Old Jewish Quarter
Hyatt Regency Amsterdam
InterContinental Amstel Amsterdam
Grand Hotel Amrath Amsterdam
Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam

Amsterdam, Holland, Netherlands - Hortus Botanicus, botanical garden near one of the city canals

Westerpark – Where to stay in Amsterdam with family

Just outside the canal belt of Amsterdam, lies the neighborhood of Westerpark. The park of the same name is a meeting hub of the area, with tons of things to do. Families love the amenities and attractions of Westerpark, such as the petting zoo and the picnic grounds.

Westergasfabriek is a former gasworks plant turned cultural center, brimming with markets and music venues. For families deciding where to stay in Amsterdam for the first time, Westerpark is a great option. With fewer Amsterdam hotels, fewer tourists and more green space, it’s really a lovely place to stay in Amsterdam.

Best places to stay in Westerpark

Cheapest Backpacking Hostels in Westerpark
Budget Hotel Tourist Inn
Flying Pig Downtown

Budget Hotels in Westerpark
Hotel de Westertoren
Sharm Hotel
Hotel Mevlana
Amstel Botel

Mid range Hotels in Westerpark
Conscious Hotel Westerpark
WestCord Art Hotel Amsterdam
The Bank Hotel

Family Friendly Hotels in Westerpark
Room Mate Aitana
Hotel Sebastian’s
Singel Hotel
Hotel Mercier

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Westerpark
Hotel Pontsteiger
Canal House
Hotel Twenty Seven
The Toren

Buildings of the former Western Gas Factory or Westergasfabriek in Amsterdam. Nowadays a Public place for creative events like music and art.

Oud West – Where to stay in Amsterdam for foodies

If you want to experience a lively residential area that’s not far from the Amsterdam city center, and far less touristy, then the best location to stay in Amsterdam is Oud West. For travelers who want a bit of green space, both Rembrandtpark and Vondelpark border this Amsterdam neighborhood. Many young families call Oud West home, and it’s growing quite the culinary scene as well, with all sorts of diverse ethnic restaurants.

De Hallen Amsterdam is a must-see destination in Oud West; the former tram station has been transformed into a food hall with restaurants, a bike shop and even a boutique hotel. For travelers who want to see how the locals live, this is one of the best neighborhoods in Amsterdam.

Best places to stay in Oud West

Cheapest Backpacking Hostels in Oud West
CityHub Amsterdam
Stayokay Hostel Amsterdam Vondelpark
Flying Pig Uptown
XO Hotel Inner

Budget Hotels in Oud West
Hotel Heye 130
Hotel Blyss
Hotel Europa’92
Quentin England Hotel

Mid range Hotels in Oud West
Pillows Anna van den Vondel
Hotel Not Hotel
Hotel De Hallen
Grand Hotel Downtown

Family Friendly Hotels in Oud West
Hotel Heye 130
Hotel Espresso
Parkview Hotel
Owl Hotel

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Oud West
Conservatorium Hotel
Hilton Amsterdam
Hotel Seven one Seven
Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht

Street life scene in Amsterdam, a bridge with bicycles parked on the bridge rail a cyclist in motion biking over the bridge and typical Dutch canal houses, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Oud Zuid – Where to stay in Amsterdam first time

Oud Zuid, or “Old South” is an upper class neighborhood of Amsterdam, which is just south of the canal ring. This is also known as the Museum Quarter, and offers many cultural attractions to residents and visitors alike.

This is quite possibly the best area to stay in Amsterdam for first time visitors, as there are so many things to do, and many accommodation options, including a small selection of cheap hotels in Amsterdam for budget travelers. In addition to museums, this is a great spot for Amsterdam nightlife, with several music venues and performance theaters.

Best places to stay in Oud Zuid

Cheapest Backpacking Hostels in Oud Zuid
Central Station Hostel
The Bulldog Hotel
Heart of Amsterdam
St Christopher’s at Winston Hotel

Budget Hotels in Oud Zuid
Hotel Pagi
Hotel de Westertoren
Acostar Hotel
Hotel 83 Amsterdam

Mid range Hotels in Oud Zuid
NH City Centre Amsterdam
Hotel Cordial
The Hoxton, Amsterdam
Hotel V Nesplein

Family Friendly Hotels in Oud Zuid
Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam
Hotel Estherea
Swissotel Amsterdam
Nova Hotel Amsterdam

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Oud Zuid
Ambassade Hotel
Private Mansions
W Amsterdam
De L’Europe Amsterdam

Apollobuurt, Amsterdam, the Netherlands - The waterscape of the North Amstel Canal (Noorder Amstelkanaal) from the Lyceum Bridge (Lyceumbrug) under cloudy sky, with a private boat with three passengers cruising across the horizon.

Zuidoost – Where to stay in Amsterdam for the music scene

The Southeast quarter of Amsterdam is largely comprised of the residential area Bijlmermeer, as well as the other districts of Venserpolder, Gaasperdam and Driemond. Amsterdam Arena, or the Johann Cruijff Arena is in this area, so this is a great place to stay in Amsterdam if you are visiting for a football match or a music concert. Zuidoost is a city all its own, with over 100,000 residents.

It was originally a futuristic planned community, which later drew many immigrant to the area. It remains a multicultural district of Amsterdam, which has lately benefited from urban renewal projects. This is one of the few places where it’s still possible to find cheap hotels in Amsterdam.

Best places to stay in Zuidoost

Cheapest Backpacking Hostels in Zuidoost
a&o Amsterdam Zuidoost
Via Amsterdam

Budget Hotels in Zuidoost
easyHotel Amsterdam Arena Boulevard

Mid range Hotels in Zuidoost
Hampton by Hilton Amsterdam / Arena Boulevard
Courtyard Amsterdam Arena Atlas
Holiday Inn Express Amsterdam – Arena Towers
Jaz Amsterdam

Family Friendly Hotels in Zuidoost
Holiday Inn Amsterdam – Arena Towers
Joy Hotel Amsterdam
Campanile Amsterdam
Hotel Levell

AMSTERDAM NETHERLANDS - Amsterdam Bijlmer ArenA metro station. It's a railway station in the Bijlmermeer neighbourhood of the Amsterdam Zuidoost stadsdeel

Amstelveen – Where to stay in Amsterdam for nature lovers

The district closest to Schipol airport is Amstelveen, a town just south of Amsterdam. This town on the Amstel River is called the second greenest city in the Netherlands. Although it may be a suburb of Amsterdam, don’t be fooled into thinking there is nothing to do here. It’s a lively city all its own, with lovely markets, shopping and museums.

Outdoor recreation is also in abundance with canoes and kayaks, plus the Amsterdam Forest for hikers and cyclists. If you have previously visited Amsterdam and seen the tourist sites and are looking for an alternative place to stay, consider this convenient suburb.  

Best places to stay in Amstelveen

Budget Hotels in Amstelveen
ibis budget Amsterdam City South

Mid range Hotels in Amstelveen
Holiday Inn Express Amsterdam – South
Amsterdam Forest Hotel

Family Friendly Hotels in Amstelveen
Htel Amstelveen
Grand Hotel Amstelveen

AMSTERDAM NETHERLANDS - Beautiful views of the streets ancient buildings people embankments of Amsterdam - also call "Venice in the North". Netherland

Leidseplein – Where to stay in Amsterdam for nightlife

Technically part of Amsterdam city center, Leidseplein Square is a buzz of activity and the center of Amsterdam nightlife. There are tons of bars, restaurants, cafes and hotels here, plus Amsterdam’s most famous coffee shop, The Bulldog. The streets are filled with tourists and buskers from all over the world. It’s not the most family friendly area of Amsterdam, but if you are a first time visitor and want to experience what Amsterdam has become famous for, then this is the best location to stay in Amsterdam.

Best places to stay in Leidseplein

Cheapest Backpacking Hostels in Leidseplein
Aston City Hotel
Hans Brinker Hostel Amsterdam
Amsterdam Hostel Centre
Amsterdam Hostel Orfeo

Budget Hotels in Leidseplein
Euphemia Hotel
ITC Hotel
Hotel Van Gogh
blossoms City

Mid range Hotels in Leidseplein
Mercure Amsterdam Centre Canal District
Hotel Kap
Hotel Asterisk 3 star superior
La Remise

Family Friendly Hotels in Leidseplein
Prinsengracht Hotel
Amsterdam Marriott Hotel
Conservatorium Hotel
Cityden Museum Square Hotel Apartments

Affordable Luxury Hotels in Leidseplein
Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam
De L’Europe Amsterdam
InterContinental Amstel Amsterdam
NH Collection Amsterdam Doelen

Amsterdam, the Netherlands - Lunch time on one of the many terraces at Leidseplein, in the center of Amsterdam on a nice fall day

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Where to Stay in Amsterdam as a First Time Visitor

where to stay in Amsterdam




Where to Stay in Amsterdam

Article written by:

Hi, my name is Samantha, Finance Managing Guru by day, Travel Blogging Enthusiast by... well... day too! Haha! Travelling King is the destination hotspot for the wannabe traveller! Showcasing affordable, luxurious getaways for the budget conscious! With the combination of my financial knowledge and travelling experiences I aim to show you, with a little planning, the right budget and a realistic goal you can fulfil your travel fantasies and explore the world whatever your budget or desires may be!

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