Rent a bike and hop on the ferry at the back of Centraal Station to explore the wide open spaces of Amsterdam North. On your way to the neighborhood’s historic working-class row houses you’ll find eye-catching architecture and quirky art studios. At night, visit funky cafés and bright restaurants and attend a theater or music festival.
Today’s dynamic atmosphere of Amsterdam North is the result of reclaiming disused industrial sites and squatted warehouses to create a cultural precinct. Former factories now house artists’ collectives, museums and dining halls, while others have been leveled to make room for stylish apartment blocks.
In the midst of this urban renewal stands the huge A’DAM Tower, transformed into a 24-hour, multi-use recreational and residential project. See a movie at the nearby EYE Film Institute, which is a film museum, art gallery and archive all in one. Visit the Op Zeezand building, a former industrial estate with views over the river IJ, to attend On the Roof, a series of summer concerts.
Step back in time in the Museum Amsterdam Noord (MAN). The neighborhood museum is located in a century-old communal bathhouse in one of the first “tuindorpen” (garden villages) of Amsterdam.
Explore the NDSM Werf, where galleries, studios, bars and live events spaces have taken over an abandoned shipyard. Don’t miss the 3D Print Canal House, which is the result of 3D-printing all materials, piece by piece. Even the accommodation here is quirky: Crane 13, the former rusting landmark of the wharf, has been turned into the tiny but luxurious Faralda NDSM Crane Hotel, while the Amstel Botel is a floating 3-star hotel in the IJ harbor.
There are several passenger ferries, which each dock in different areas of Amsterdam North, so be sure to check the final destination of your ferry. With so much to do in Amsterdam North and each short ferry trip being free of charge, you can keep coming back to this eclectic part of Amsterdam.