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  • Writer's pictureChuka Nwanazia

Top 10 Reasons To Visit Amsterdam In The Summer!

Summer terrace in Amsterdam

Summer in Amsterdam is just beautiful! The sunrise and sunset on the city's canals, the terraces filled with people having some delicious dishes and tasty cocktails. There is, of course, the fully packed museums and shopping streets along with parks and street markets all "filled to the brim" with people. Amsterdam never ceases to amaze and entertain. The city comes to life and is so full of energy in the summer.

Of course, laying on a towel and relaxing on a sunny beach can be quite tempting, but sometimes, it is equally nice to stay at home (in my case Amsterdam) and spend a few summer days there. Wondering why Amsterdam remains the ideal destination every summer?

Well, here are a few reasons for you.

1. The festivals and open-air parties.

Open-air Festival Amsterdam

You do not necessarily have to go to Ibiza or Sunny Beach to experience the joys and thrills of open-air parties. In the summer, there are lots of open-air parties and festivals in Amsterdam and the wonderful thing is; some of them are totally free! Do you know that you can attend the Food Truck Festival (TREK), Gay Parade or Roots Open Air and partake in all the fun with friends and family without buying a ticket? One of the best open-air music festivals in the Netherlands is "Amsterdam Open-air."

Check out their website for more information and tickets.

2. Chilling on a roof terrace.

Rooftop terrace in Amsterdam (Floor 17)

What could be better than just sitting around on the rooftop of a very tall building, enjoying some BBQ and drinking cocktails on a lovely summer day? Yeah, you go that right, Nothing! My favourite rooftop terrace is actually the DoubleTree SkyLounge close to the Amsterdam Central Station. There is also Floor17 which has a BBQ unlike the DoubleTree. A rooftop terrace is the perfect place to be for some drinks with friends on a nice and warm summer day.

3. BBQ in the park with friends and family.

BBQ in an Amsterdam Park

This is one for all lovers of a good old fashioned barbecue. I mean, what could be better than a BBQ party in the park on a bright summer afternoon with friends and family? Nothing right? BBQing in the Oosterpark, the Rembrandtpark or the Vondelpark still remains one of the best things ever! Some people even throw BBQ parties in the park (if it is allowed of course). Don't forget to bring a bottle of wine or a crate of beer, some baguettes and all the stuff you need for a BBQ and then make sure to enjoy your afternoon. Oh and don't forget to take a Beats Pill with you for the music! It isn't all that fun without some good music.

4. Rooftop and open-air cinemas.

Rooftop Movie Night at Floor 17

Forget about your normal movie theatres for a while and check this one out! Imagine watching movies on a beautiful summer afternoon or evening on the rooftop of a really tall building (usually a hotel). Yes! It is as wonderful and romantic as you've pictured it! Open-air cinemas in Amsterdam is actually a real thing! It starts in the summer from the beginning of July and lasts till the middle of September. Classics and new films are alternately played on gigantic white cloths strategically placed outside. One of my favourite places is the night screens of the floor17 Rooftop terrace.

Check out their website for more information and purchasing tickets.

5. The (street) markets and fairs.

Amsterdam's Ten Cate market

Amsterdam street markets are like history presented in stalls. They are old, fascinating and full of unique wares. There's a street market almost every week and while some take place daily, others are usually once in two weeks or once a month. You can rent a bike and just ride around, or walk from one stall to the other while inspecting wares and asking the sellers about their products. Amsterdam markets aren't only for daily groceries, they're also fun because they teach you how to bargain like a true Dutchie! Don't forget to visit the Ten Cate Market or the Albert Cuyp Market and learn how to bargain like a true Dutchie.

6. Kwaku Summer Festival.

Kwaku Summer Festival Amsterdam

Summer is when the Nelson Mandelapark in Amsterdam Zuidoost (South-East) is graced with culture, music, dance, food and drink during the Kwaku Summer Festival (formerly Kwakoe Festival). Kwaku Summer Festival is one of the largest multicultural festivals in the Netherlands and one of the biggest events in Amsterdam, attracting around 300,000 visitors annually. The festival brings together cultures and creates a colourful collection of performances, dance, film, music and of course football. Don't miss out as it's scheduled to be back this year!

Check out their website for more information.

7. Trek Food Truck Festival.

Trek Food Truck Festival Amsterdam

Yeah, it's exactly what you think it is! Lots of food trucks, lots of people and of course, lots of delicious food and tasty drinks! Trek Food Truck festival is all about food trucks trekking through the entire country, gathering at city parks and entertaining people with delicacies and drinks, plus live music, theatre and other forms of entertainment. Sample some delicious street food and don't forget to surprise yourself by trying something new. From sushi, vega burgers and fries to Surinamese roti; your taste buds are going to be well taken care of throughout that period. You can quench your thirst at the cocktail bar, the extensive wine bar with a lovely terrace or the special beer bus. Just take your pick, sit back and enjoy!

You can also check out this link for some of Amsterdam's best restaurants.

8. Vondelpark Open-Air Theatre.

Vondel Park Open-air Theatre

From early May until late September, Vondelpark plays host to different artistic activities. Every summer you can attend theVondelpark Openluchttheater. Friday evenings are for contemporary and modern dance performances, Saturday afternoons are when children perform, the evenings are for stand up comedy shows and music. Sunday mornings are for classical music performances and concerts: dance, youth theatre, cabaret, classical and pop music. Entry is free of charge, although donations are always accepted.

For more information, visit the Open-air theatre website.

9. Summer is always boating season in Amsterdam.

Summer is boating season in Amsterdam

Every summer is boating season in Amsterdam. What could be more fun than sailing a boat through the canals of Amsterdam in the summer? There are different kinds of boats cruising the busy waters of Amsterdam's canals every summer. There are pancake boats, BBQ boats with unlimited drinks, pizza and hamburger cruises and even boats for weed smokers. Amsterdam canals are a "sea of endless possibilities." Visit Amsterdam Central Station where there are lots of boating companies and take your pick out of different unique and interesting cruises. It is also possible to rent boats and sail them yourself. Just search for private renters on Google.

10. Amsterdam Gay Pride or Pride Amsterdam.

Pride Amsterdam's Gay Parade on the Amsterdam canals

The annual Gay Pride never ceases to dazzle. Summer in Amsterdam isn't really complete without the Gay Pride Festival. Pride Amsterdam kicks off this year on the 28th of July and of course, there will definitely be a traditional boat parade. The boat parade entails boats of different sizes that have already been registered with the organisation cruising the canals. There is music on board and there are people dressed in colourful costumes dancing and having fun. Pride Amsterdam isn't just about the boat parade, there are also activities like music performances and sports. 2018 will see more than seven thousand people take part in a Pride Walk as Pride Amsterdam will be officially opened in Vondelpark's Open-Air Theatre.

For more information on this years' activities and boat parade, check out the Pride Amsterdam website.

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