Throughout the whole year Amsterdam offers many kinds of attractions and activities – interesting museums, vibrant night-life in the red-light district and canals with the bridges covered in beautiful flowers and bicycles. What is special in the summer (what I didn’t even know when I first visited Amsterdam) is that you can experience something more summer like – urban beaches! During the summer these beaches provide festivals, parties, activities, drinks & food and just a little bit more vacation-like atmosphere to the city holiday!
When asking for recommendations for urban beaches, you probably will hear the name Roest mentioned often. Roest is in the east of Amsterdam near by the Brouwerij’t IJ – so if you cycle there you can pass one of the eight windmills in Amsterdam as well.
The concept of Roest is interesting, the venue is well used in the old industrial area – it is a café, bar and a restaurant (the food looks amazing), it also holds a lot of events and parties. For example, on the 14th of July you can participate in the Respect the 80’s party here!
Strand Zuid is located a bit more in the east, easy to get to with the metro line 50 from Sloterdijk. Alternatively cycling is also a nice option, since the area in the south is very scenic.
The first thing I noticed here when I arrived at Strand Zuid, was how charming the surroundings were. Cute little lanterns and a lot of green plants help make the place feel really cozy and fresh. Just a quick turn from the cycling path and you’re experiencing a totally different atmosphere. Strand Zuid offers nice terrace tables by the view to the Zuidpool and the Beatrix park behind it, but also tables and chairs on the beach where you can just take your shoes off and enjoy the day.
One of my favorite ones is definitely Dok. 13-minutes cycling from Teleport and you’re already there! At this place the view towards the water is actually outside of the beach, but when you get inside it doesn’t really matter anymore. At Dok you have almost everything else a beach would require – people walking bare foot, beach volleyball, sand and of course the palm trees! Literally you can just go there, take your shoes off and relax with a beer or a plate of nachos.
Dok also hosts a lot of events and on the 7th of July, you will find a Tapas Food Festival there!
Interested in swimming, renting a kayak or a sailboat, having a picnic, running, yoga, exercising in an outdoor gym or just having a drink on a terrace? Well Sloterplas is a great place to visit then! I cycle pass this lake every day, but only recently found out about the beach (with seashells) where you can actually swim. Albert Heijn is not too far either (5 minutes away), so getting the picnic foods is not too much of a trouble. And if you don’t want to sit in the sand, on the other side of Sloterplas there are nice grass areas.
Sloterplas in very conveniently located from Teleport – only 9 minutes of cycling or 28 minutes of walking.
5.Het Stenen Hoofd
This small beach with more casual-like atmosphere is just 5 minutes from the central station. There is a little beach café, where you can order lemonades, soft drinks and snacks. I tried their lemon lemonade, which was really good – bubbly and sweet. You can have a drink at the café on its terrace or lay on the little beach left-side of the café with your own food.
From here you have a pretty nice view to the north – you can spot the A’dam tower and the NDSM for example.
On the 7th till the 8th of July you can find a beer festival here with live wrestling, tasty food and different craft beers!
Besides these five, there are other urban beaches in Amsterdam: Pllek in the north and Blijburg aan Zee in the east of Amsterdam. These two also host different events throughout the summer: open air movie nights at Pllek and different music events in the huge beach of Blijburg aan Zee.
As a non-local I definitely recommend these places for the people who are interested in doing something a bit different on their holiday to Amsterdam. After visiting some museums, I can’t think of anything better than relaxing on an urban beach with good music, tasty food and cold drinks or even enjoying a festival!
On this map you can check out all the places I mentioned and find the most convenient one![:]
This post is also available in: Dutch