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Amsterdam - can anyone recommend a hotel for a lone traveller and what to do in the city?

25 replies

wingscrow · 25/02/2022 09:09

I am visiting a friend who lives near Amsterdam this April. I want to spend a couple of days in the city first before I travel to her home in the countryside.

I have never been to Amsterdam and I am looking for suggestions about hotels/where to stay.

I will be coming by Eurostar & will also need to get a train to travel to my friend's so somewhere safe near the station would be good.

I am travelling on my own and a bit nervous and would appreciate any suggestions/tips about the city visit part of my trip.

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Tiramumsu · 25/02/2022 09:21

A couple of years ago we enjoyed a cocktail here. The seats face the windows so you can see across the city, and it's a good way to regroup and compose yourself if you're like me and sometimes get a bit overwhelmed when you travel alone. //skyloungeamsterdam.com

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Soffit · 25/02/2022 09:30

If you want a no frills reliable place then you could stay at the Ibis Centraal which is almost next to the station where the Eurostar comes in. It's often chosen by people who are in Amsterdam for a few meetings and travelling on by train a few days later. From there, you can either walk or take a tram to anywhere. Walking to Anne Frank Haus/Dam Square/Palace is straightforward. You could either walk/tram to the main museums. There is a decent Wagamama just inside the station if you want familiar food just before setting out again!

A cheese and chocolate alley runs along the side of the station with many generous free tasting opportunities!

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Soffit · 25/02/2022 09:32

Usually a central location and atmospheric canalside choices basically means lots of narrow winding staircases but the chain hotels have lifts so you can request a quiet, higher floor room without dealing with the higgledy piggledy architecture

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balalake · 25/02/2022 13:14

There is a hotel just opposite Haarlem station (15 minutes away) which I stayed in a few years ago. Might be suitable.

Hotel Lion D'Or.

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Fuzzy303 · 25/02/2022 13:28

We always stay in the Leidseplein region in Amsterdam. Not too far away from all the fun things but far enough to not be in the thick of stag weekend territory.

Park Centraal Hotel is where we last stayed & loved it

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Catmummyof2 · 25/02/2022 13:35

The Tulip of Amsterdam guest house was adorable. In a safe part of the city and the two B&B rooms are in the upper floors of someone’s house.

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pandora206 · 25/02/2022 13:38

Last time I visited I stayed at Kimpton DeWitt - I wasn't on my own but would happily stay there alone. It's in walking distance of central station, on the bus route and very close to great places to eat. We had free drinks early evening too, which was fab. It's contemporary in decor but in a traditional building, so the best of both worlds. It isn't cheap but was worth it.

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Bogiesaremyonlyfriend · 25/02/2022 13:38

100% go to the body worlds museum. I thought I'd hate it but it was fascinating and one of the best days out I've never had. You did need to book most things when we went in October and lots sold out fairly early so missed out in van gough and Anne Frank! Canal trip was enjoyable.

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Rhannion · 25/02/2022 14:00

Van Gogh museum is a must, Anne Frank House and the cat hotel which is on a house boat ( if you like cats)
Avoid the red light areas

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leafinthewind · 25/02/2022 14:06

RoomMate Aitana on the IJDock is inexpensive and nice. Close to the station. But you do have to cross a busy bike path to get there, so watch out for bikes!

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Lennybythewood · 25/02/2022 14:15

I stayed at Hotel Sebastian's ( www.hotelsebastians.nl/en/ ) as a solo traveller a few years ago and would recommend. The area itself seemed safe - quite close to the station and not too far from most of the main places of interest.

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AdaColeman · 25/02/2022 14:21

There is a super floating flower market on the Single Canal which is a beautiful sight, full of exotic colourful blooms, a real photo opportunity!

A boat trip on the canals is an interesting experience too.

I agree about staying well clear of the red light area, quite a nasty threatening atmosphere. A guy ran through chopping at people with a meat cleaver when I was there!

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ReviewingTheSituation · 25/02/2022 14:26

Can't remember where we stayed, but definitely go to the Ann Frank house. But you MUST book in advance - it gets really booked up (and I imagine capacity has been reduced even further). If you don't book, the queues are hours long.

It's a lovely city - one where I've been on my own a few times.

De 9 Straatjes is a great area to wander round - lovely shops and cafes.

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Habibtihayatiii · 25/02/2022 14:30

Seconding The Kimpton De Witt, I've stayed here alone a number of times and always felt very comfortable and safe. As the PP said, they have a 'happy hour' with free drinks in the early evening so you can always go down for that if you'd like to have a chat with people but you can also just bring a cup of tea/glass of wine up to your room. It's close to the main station so easy to get to from the airport and there are restaurants and shops all around the streets and you can walk on totally pedestrianised roads to most of the major sites within 20 minutes

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romanziere · 25/02/2022 16:37

If you like books, the Ambassade Hotel is wonderful. They have 5,000 books in their library, many by authors who have stayed there. I stayed on my own (as an extremely minor author) and they were so lovely to me and got me to sign one of my books for them, treating me as if I were Shakespeare. They have a writer in residence and are 'the writers' hotel'.
It's a shortish walk from the station, by a canal: I arrived by train and walked there late in the evening and it was absolutely fine. The location was so beautiful and I absolutely loved my few solo days there.

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SmiteTheeWithThunderbolts · 25/02/2022 17:15

I stayed at the Ibis Styles across from Central Station:
all.accor.com/hotel/9137/index.en.shtml

It's central, close to the station, and easy walking distance to lots of things. I was rather nervous about unintentionally walking into the Red Light district but I was actually there a few days before I came across it and it wasn't the 1970s sleaze pit I was expecting, so it's nothing to worry about!

Ibis Styles are an international chain (with Ibis and Novotel) and there are some in other locations in Amsterdam. I stay in them a lot: they're cheaper than Ibis but funkily furnished and have amazing breakfast. The rooms are often quite small but that's ideal if you're travelling alone, especially if you can get a single room which is cheaper than a double.

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SmiteTheeWithThunderbolts · 25/02/2022 17:24

Time Out has good recommendations:

www.timeout.com/amsterdam

If you like art:
Rijksmuseum
Van Gogh Museum
Rembrandthuis

Museum of Our Lord in the Attic: 17th century house with a church in the attic:
opsolder.nl/en/museum-our-lord-in-the-attic/

Definitely the Anne Frank House. I wasn't enthusiastic prior to going but I'm so glad I did as it was extremely touching and educational.

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wingscrow · 25/02/2022 17:24

Thank you so much everyone! I am really touched by all the lovely responses.

The Van Gogh museum and Anne Frank House were on my list so good to see that confirmed :)

Good to hear that there is so much to do and decent hotels within walking distance once I get there,

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ilovesooty · 25/02/2022 17:30

I've stayed in lots of hotels in Amsterdam as a lone traveller. The Ibis is fine and I've stayed several times in the Avenue which is safe and pleasant, as is the Rho.

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Funf · 25/02/2022 19:09

We got the local bus from the train station to Marken, then a short ferry to Volendam then bus to Edam then back to the stain its a nice day out and magic off one of the small village festivals is on
www.holland.com/global/tourism/destinations/provinces/north-holland/marken.htm

www.holland.com/global/tourism/destinations/more-destinations/volendam/volendam-3.htm

www.holland.com/global/tourism/destinations/provinces/north-holland/edam-10.htm

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midsomermurderess · 26/02/2022 13:14

I've stayed here mrjordaan.nl/ and it's lovely. On Bloemgracht, right in the middle of the Jordaan district, about 15 minutes from Central station.

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BalladOfBarryAndFreda · 26/02/2022 13:39

I second the Jordaan district. It’s beautiful and well away from the square area where the stags are but still in the thick of it, on the canals and walkable to all the sights.

I recommend a Dam Boat Guys tour www.thosedamboatguys.com/. Not your average boat tour, great for groups or singles. I’ve been on a couple as part of a small family group and there have been single travellers on both, they seemed to have a good time. Probably best if you’re on the gregarious side though.

I also recommend a walking food tour with Eating Europe. Small groups and very personal, a great way to get to know the local area, bit of history and food culture and chat to a local. I try to do a food tour in every city I visit.

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TreesAtSea · 28/02/2022 13:18

If your experience is anything like mine (have had two short stays in Amsterdam on my own), you'll have a really enjoyable time. It really is the friendliest and most welcoming place I've ever visited.
Tons to do as PPs have said. Since you're going in April, hope you get to see the glorious tulip fields. Day trips to the region, including the Keukenhof gardens, can be done from Amsterdam: combination tickets which include travel to and from the city plus admission to Keukenhof, can be bought from the tourist information centre outside the central station.
Have a wonderful time 🌷🌷

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JingsMahBucket · 28/02/2022 15:46

@pandora206

Last time I visited I stayed at Kimpton DeWitt - I wasn't on my own but would happily stay there alone. It's in walking distance of central station, on the bus route and very close to great places to eat. We had free drinks early evening too, which was fab. It's contemporary in decor but in a traditional building, so the best of both worlds. It isn't cheap but was worth it.

I was just coming here to recommend the Kimpton De Witt. @pandora206 so glad it wasn’t just me. Loved that hotel. The rooms and design are gorgeous; the staff are so kind; and the restaurant food is delicious too. I went there early 2019 but the current reviews still rate the hotel well. Depending on when you’re going, it runs about £145 — £190/night.
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pandora206 · 28/02/2022 16:54

@JingsmaBucket - writing about Kimpton DeWitt reminded me just how fab it was. I agree about the restaurant food too.
I really want to go back this year.

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