Amsterdam Travel Diaries

Last week, I turned the big, ripe old age of 23. Well, it's not really that big unless you're screaming/constantly quoting the lyrics of What's My Age Again? by Blink 182 (which yes, I was un-shamefully doing!).

Not only was it my Birthday, I was also lucky enough to spend the time away in Amsterdam with my boyfriend, Jack! We actually got up to SO much stuff within the 3 days that we spent there, it would be rude not to blog about it!

Amsterdam Centraal Station
We arrived after less than an hour flight and a short train journey to a very chilly, yet mostly sunny Amsterdam! After admiring Centraal Station and its surroundings, we headed over to buy our tram and canal boat tour tickets for later that evening.

Our hotel was only a short tram ride away to Rembrantplein. We stayed in the NH Amsterdam Caransa which was in my opinion, the perfect central location. We had bars, shops, 'coffee shops', actual coffee shops, restaurants and a tram stop directly outside. All of that, as well as being within walking distance of the majority of things we wanted to do (if we had nice enough weather!).

Torture Museum, Amsterdam
Amsterdam Flower Market
Amsterdam Tulips

After settling into the hotel, we took a short walk to the end of the road to find the Torture Museum. Whilst we were walking there, we got distracted by Bloemenmarkt aka. The Floating Flower Market on the opposite side of the canal.

It's so colourful when you're walking through and I guarantee there is probably every single seed for every single plant ever sold there. Well, maybe not ever but you catch my drift! Basically, what I'm trying to say is: Anything plant related, it will probably be sold there! I'd love to visit again in Spring, as I bet it's bursting with hundreds of pretty tulips!

Another amazing factor of this location is that there are at least 4 cheese shops with zillions of tasters,  all running alongside the market, which obviously pleased me (and my stomach) more than words can say!

Amsterdam Light Festival

Amsterdam Light Festival
The evening consisted of our previously booked boat tour with KINBoats, which is a small open-topped boat that only holds about 20 people. We, well I, thought this was a better option as we didn't want to have restricted views in a greenhouse-style boat with hundreds of other people. It was slightly more expensive (and COLD) with this option, but a way nicer experience!

Although it would have been great to do a canal tour in the day, we just so happened to be there during the Amsterdam Light Festival. Meaning we'd get to see the majority of that in all its glory, without having to look for them by foot #thuglife.

Amsterdam Light Festival
Amsterdam Light Festival

Our tour included a free hot drink (I chose Mulled Wine!), blankets to keep us as warm as possible and lasted just over an hour. We cruised along at a relaxing, mellow speed for the entire tour and found out so much about Amsterdam's History, as well as enjoying different parts of the Light Festival.

The Amsterdam Dungeon

Day Two was my actual Birthday! We had a busy day of sightseeing planned and after a classy Burger King breakfast, we headed on over to The Amsterdam Dungeon for a morning of scares!

We've visited the London & Blackpool Tower Dungeons before, so this was another one to tick off the list. It was really fun learning all about Amsterdam's dark history (with a few scares thrown in) and of course I got picked on 3 times and made a tit out of myself too.. Standard.

Dam Square
Dam Square
When we finished up at The Dungeons, we stopped off at a really cute bakery with hundreds of colourful macaroons on display and got a Nutella smothered waffle to keep us fuelled until we found a somewhat more suitable lunch!

After mass indulging, we walked up to DAM Square to take some photos, grab some footage for our travel vlog and browse the shops (much to Jack's delight..!). It also seemed wise to make good use of time whilst the weather was on our side!

Sexmuseum, Amsterdam

I know what you're thinking and yes.. that is two enormous freestanding dicks. Slightly impressive, yet a rather horrifying thought, right?

In the midst of our spontaneous adventure, we stumbled across the Sex Museum. It was only 6 euros each, so we thought we'd pop in and.. errr.. embrace the culture? Not gonna lie, the whole thing was quite amusing and it felt like one big XXXX-rated sex lesson, crossed with how to be a mega huge porn star! It's hard (lol) for me to explain what it was like without sounding weird but if you go to Amsterdam - see for yourself and have a giggle!

Magna Plaza Amsterdam

After quite the eye-bulging experience, we jumped on a tram to our next destination. Obviously, I got distracted half way there by the most stunning building ever: The Magna Plaza Shopping Centre! Heart eyes emoji x100.

I'd seen loads of pretty photo's of this online, so it was only right that we went in for a quick mooch. Obviously it's just as beautiful on the outside as it is in, but other than that there's not too many shops there (besides Yankee Candle!). We took a few snaps, then headed back out to find the I Amsterdam letters.

Rijksmuseum Amsterdam
I Amsterdam letters
I amsterdam letters
The I Amsterdam letters were next on the days agenda. Tourists gotta tour. I knew the rumours about the letters being busy were true, but it's literally any photographers nightmare if you go anytime after 9am. Sadly, I didn't want to be up at that hour on my week off, so Jack and I just made do with the half-decent photo's we managed to get!

bagels and beans

bagels and beans
Now, a busy afternoon of adventures can only mean one thing.. the ultimate food cravings. If you've been to Amsterdam, then you should know that Bagels And Beans is literally the best place on this entire bagel-y earth. THE FOOD. Soz Bagelman, you're dumped. They literally pack your bagel with the most amazing concoction of ingredients, ultimately giving you the most Instagrammable and delicious meal of your life.

Ps. Make sure you try their strawberry, banana, mango & raspberry smoothie - it's SO good!

The Fault In Our Stars Bench
The Fault In Our Stars Bench

The Fault In Our Stars Bench was something that never even crossed my mind whilst in Amsterdam. Luckily, whilst indulging in delicious bagels and smoothies and searching around on the map, it suddenly appeared! THANK YOU GOOGLE, YOU BEAUTIFUL CREATION.

Unfortunately, as we were so unprepared we didn't get to put a lock on there, but getting to sit there and almost cry whilst re-living the film (in my mind) was enough.

Hard rock cafe amsterdam

For dinner, it was only right that we ticked off another Hard Rock Cafe! The Amsterdam Hard Rock is the coolest, as most of the tables are situated by a window overlooking the canal. 

I always order the yummiest looking cocktail on the menu and this time, I got the most insane strawberry and watermelon cocktail ever, served in a cafitiere! Obviously their food never disappoints either (garlic and parmesan fries, I'm looking at you!) and no matter what Hard Rock we go to in the world, it never gets old.

Amsterdam in January
Amsterdam in January

Day Three aka. The day of rain, we were up bright and early(ish) to visit the Anne Frank House. As there is no photography allowed, I didn't get any photo's from inside (or out for that matter) but it was probably the most raw and intense part of the whole trip.

This is a total must-see if you're in the area. If you are planning on visiting, be sure to book in advance to avoid queues. Overall though, the only queue we saw (and joined) was ours for the pre-booked tickets. Probably making January an overall good time to visit!


After wandering around for a while, we managed to find Electric Lady Land - The Museum of Florescent Light, which is hidden away amongst Amsterdam's cobbled streets. Sadly though, it was closed. Oops for not checking the opening times!

Instead, we headed back down to Bagels and Beans (yes, again!) for a nice, leisurely lunch and before we knew it, we were frantically rushing to make our slot at the Heineken Experience (in the pouring rain!).

Heineken Experience
Heineken Experience
Heineken Experience

Thankfully, we made it in time and we got stuck into the experience as soon as we got our wristbands. It's not just a tour of the factory/museum, you also get 2 free drinks included at the end it (as well as a few extras on the way round). Hooray for beer! It really wasn't anything I expected, but it was thoroughly enjoyable and actually so interesting! There's also a 'ride' near the end where you get turned into a beer!

After indulging in our 15 millionth Heineken of the trip, we headed back (in a still rainy Amsterdam) to our hotel for a bit of chill time and drying off!


As this was our last night, we thought we'd eat somewhere that wasn't a restaurant chain available in the UK. I'd been recommend by a friend to try Rancho Steak House, an Argentinian Steak House situated right by our hotel on Rembrantplien. It was reasonably priced and the steak was UH-MAZING - it was so big it literally had it's own plate!

For dessert, we went a few doors down to Cakes & Bakes for yet another waffle and Nutella! Seriously, you need to go there and try one!

Red Light District

After this, it seemed necessary that we went for a walk down the Red Light District. It was very surreal seeing all of the girls standing there in the windows, as well as feeling super awkward walking past as you don't know where to look. The Red Light is also home to The First Bulldog Coffeeshop.

Tip: Be wary of taking pictures down here, as I've heard if you get caught, security will stop you or even worse still, chuck your phone into the canal!

Beer Fabriek
Beer Fabriek

Our final adventure of the evening took us to Beer Fabriek, a brewery and restaurant in one. It's hidden away in one of Amsterdam's more upbeat side streets and it's definitely worth a visit. All beer is brewed on-site, and you can even reserve a table in advance which has your own beer tap on! How cool is that?!

We continued our bar/pub crawl after multiple beers here, and finally settled down for the night to Netflix and a McDonalds in bed, before getting ready to go home the next day! The class.

Before ending this post, I just want to share some potentially useful tips with you if you're visiting or thinking of doing..

Useful tips if you're visiting the city:

- Book the attractions in advance!
- People are super friendly!
- Use the tram service to get around. It only costs 17 Euros for a 3-day ticket.
- Get a Train from the Airport into the city. They are super fast and cost next to nothing.
- The roads are mental and so confusing! Only use a bike if you know what you're doing, or want to risk being killed by a tram!
- The Duty Free at Amsterdam Airport is huge and actually pretty decent!
- Wrap up in the Winter and prepare for rain.. the wind is COLD AF.

As far as confessions go, Amsterdam stole my heart. Even in the most miserable of winters, the cities beauty won't fail you and leave you wanting more. With canals around each corner and so many beautiful buildings and people - you can't not fall in love! Although the trip was pretty full-on, I actually came back feeling so refreshed and relaxed. I can't wait to go back!

Have you been to Amsterdam or on any trips recently? I'd love to hear about them! :)


  1. Amazing photos babe such a great experience, Dam has been on mine and my fiances list for over 2 years and then we got pregnant lol now its a no go until our daughter is born and grows up a little so we can leave her with the grandmas for a weekend, cant be traveling there pregnant when we both know the real purpose I be going Amsterdam for looool!! hinthint Thank you so much for sharing this with us! Happy New Year to you and your family!! Dominica from

    1. Thank you so much! Hahahaha, your motives are inspiring! ;) Congrats on being pregnant too! That must be so exciting - hopefully you'll make it there one day! :) Happy New Year to you and your family too!! xxxx

  2. Your photos are so gorgeous and have made me want to go to Amsterdam even more! It looks and sounds like you had an amazing time! xx

    1. Thank you! :) It was so fab, I seriously recommend going there if you haven't been! xxxx

  3. It sounds as though you have had an amazing time and what a way to celebrate your 23rd birthday! Your photos are amazing too, you have really captured Amsterdam beautifully :) xx

    Yasmina | The July Journal

    1. It was so fun celebrating it there! :D Thank you so much - it really is a beautiful place! xxx

  4. I loved this post, I am off to Amsterdam next month so this has given me loads of idea's and I have written down some recommendations!! Such beautiful photos too!

    Lauren Rose:

    1. Yay thank you! I'm glad you have loads of ideas and I hope you have the best time! Make sure you do a boat tour and Anne Frank - they were my top two! :) xxx


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