Hit the beach… in Amsterdam!
Sure, Amsterdam is a watery city, what with all the canals, but it’s not usually one of the places that comes to mind when you think of beach destinations around the world. Still, in addition to the beach resorts that are easy day trips from Amsterdam, during the summer you don’t even have to leave the city itself to visit the beach.
As the official Amsterdam tourism site proclaims, “Urban beaches are a new and rapidly growing phenomenon in Amsterdam.” These may not be the kinds of beaches you’d find along the French Riviera or the Florida coast, but they can be fantastic places to hang out if you don’t have time to leave the city but still want to soak up the sun.
>> And don’t forget, there are some nude beaches near Amsterdam, too.
Here are some of the city beaches in Amsterdam you might want to visit during the summer season, listed in alphabetical order.
BadBuiten – Amsterdam’s only floating pool, BadBuiten is moved into place on the Korte Ouderkerkerdijk (to the south of the city center) in April and stays open through September. It’s not a huge pool, but it’s certainly a novelty; if you’re traveling with kids and your hotel doesn’t have a pool, this might be a welcome activity on a warm afternoon.
Blijburg Beach Club – This sandy beach is located in the eastern part of IJburg, outside Amsterdam’s city center. It’s easy to reach via public transit – tram #26 goes from the Centraal Station to IJburg, and from the tram stop it’s about a five-minute walk to the beach.
BovenNEMO – Sitting atop the NEMO Science Center right in central Amsterdam, BovenNEMO Beach is something like a giant rooftop bar that just happens to have a distinctly “day at the beach” vibe about it. It’s open during the summer, usually from late June through early September, and it’s free to access.
StrandWest – This is a permanent sandy beach on the River IJ near central Amsterdam, although it’s not a place to go swimming. The beach is equipped with hammocks, beach volleyball areas, and plenty of places to get drinks and food.
Strand Noord – As the name implies, this beach is to the north of Amsterdam’s city center, on the opposite bank of the River IJ from the center. The beach was built on a former shipyard, and there are often events going on (like art installations and concerts) even when it’s not beach weather anymore.
Strand Zuid City Beach – This beach is next to Beatrix Park, to the south of the city center, and it comes with one unexpected feature that’s very handy if the weather turns sour: a cover. Yes, the beach can actually be covered.