Imagine awakening to a chorus of bicycle bells, the aromatic dance of street waffles in the air, and a maze of canals reflecting the pastel-hued dawn. Amsterdam—the Venice of the North—is a canvas awaiting photographers with its enchanting fusion of history and urban flair. In this article, we’ll wander through backstreets and bridges to uncover the Top 15 Best Photo Spots in Amsterdam, ensuring your memories are not just retained but captured through the lens with mesmerizing charm.
Activities for all tastes where each place is unique for that perfect Instagram photo.
1. The Canals Of Amsterdam
Nothing epitomizes Amsterdam more than its iconic canals. A visit to the intersection of the Brouwersgracht and Herengracht provides a quintessential Amsterdam snapshot, with boats gently bobbing and merchant houses tilting at precarious angles. Nevertheless, roaming around the ring area will give you plenty of fresh and unseen new images for the perfect snapshot.
2. Magere Brug (Skinny Bridge)
Located on the river Amstel, Magere Brug comes alive at night as it illuminates and reflects on the water. This romantic spot is a beloved scene for evening photographers and couples alike. Don’t forget also to take a look at the beautiful Carré Theater.
How do I get here: Magere Brug.
3. De Gooyer Windmill
The De Gooyer Windmill, the tallest wooden windmill in the Netherlands, is a Dutch National Monument. Constructed in the 16th century, it was moved to its current location in 1814. The windmill, also known as “Funenmolen,” was owned by two brothers, Claes and Jan Willemsz, in 1609. It’s the last of 26 windmills that once stood on Amsterdam’s 17th-century walls. Though its blades are still operational, the mill itself no longer functions.
The windmill was purchased by the city of Amsterdam in 1928 and fully restored. It functioned as a grain mill as late as during World War II. While it’s closed to the public, it’s a popular spot for photos. The site also houses the Brouwerij ‘t IJ pub, Amsterdam’s leading microbrewery. The base of the windmill, which housed public baths until 1985, has been converted into a brewhouse.
How do I get here: Funenkade 5, 1018 AL Amsterdam.
4. Dam Square
Dam Square, the pulsating heart of Amsterdam, is a treasure trove of photographic opportunities. The square is adorned with historic buildings, including the majestic Royal Palace, which stands as a testament to the city’s rich past. The square’s vibrant atmosphere is amplified when it comes alive with a variety of street performers showcasing their unique talents, from musicians to mimes, adding a dynamic and colorful backdrop to your photos.
Moreover, the square frequently hosts markets that offer a wide range of goods, from fresh produce to vintage clothes, providing a glimpse into the local culture and lifestyle. These markets, with their bustling activity and array of colorful stalls, add another layer of interest to your photographs.
In the evening, the square transforms into a spectacle of lights, with the buildings beautifully illuminated against the night sky. This offers yet another perspective for captivating photos. Whether you’re an amateur with a smartphone or a professional with a high-end camera, Dam Square provides endless inspiration for that perfect Instagram shot. Remember to explore different angles and perspectives to truly capture the essence of this lively square. Happy clicking!
How do I get here: Dam Square.
The Museumplein, nestled in the heart of Amsterdam, is more than just a hotspot for cultural enthusiasts. It’s a vibrant canvas that beautifully showcases the city’s love for art and history. The square is dominated by the stunning architecture of the Rijksmuseum, a Dutch national museum dedicated to arts and history. The museum’s intricate design, with its grand arches and intricate facades, provides a striking contrast to the modern cityscape, making it a perfect subject for your Instagram feed.
The Museumplein itself is a lively space, often hosting open-air exhibitions, markets, and events that bring a burst of energy and color to the area. The wide-open green spaces, dotted with sculptures and installations, add a touch of tranquility and offer a unique perspective for your photographs.
Location: Museumstraat 1, 1071 XX Amsterdam.
Visit the Rijksmuseum, embrace art
The world’s only floating flower market, the Bloemenmarkt is a burst of color and fragrant blooms that offer a sensory photo feast not to be missed, here you can. The market’s colorful stalls, filled with tulips, daffodils, orchids, and more, create a rainbow-like spectacle against the backdrop of the serene waterways. The reflection of the flowers on the water adds an extra layer of beauty to your photographs.Don’t forget to capture the unique sight of the flower stalls floating on the water, a feature that sets the Bloemenmarkt apart from other markets. Whether it’s a close-up of a tulip, a wide shot of the floating market, or a candid photo of a vendor, the Bloemenmarkt offers endless opportunities for that perfect Instagram shot.
Location: Singel 610, 1012 XN Amsterdam.
7. Jordaan Neighborhood
Jordaan, with its narrow streets, quirky shops, and unique eateries, is a picturesque neighborhood that encapsulates Amsterdam’s local charm. The area’s historic buildings, artistic murals, and charming canals offer a myriad of photo opportunities. The vibrant street life, with locals biking or enjoying a canal-side coffee, adds a lively touch to your photos. It’s a place where every corner tells a story, waiting to be captured through your lens.
Location: Jordaan Amsterdam.
Vondelpark, Amsterdam’s verdant oasis, offers panoramic shots of serene nature, juxtaposed with the lively atmosphere of locals enjoying this urban retreat. The park’s winding paths, tranquil ponds, and vibrant flower beds provide a diverse palette for your photos. Whether it’s a jogger in motion, a quiet reading spot under a tree, or a family picnic on the grass, Vondelpark captures the essence of Amsterdam’s laid-back lifestyle. It’s a place where city life and nature harmoniously coexist, waiting to be captured in your frame.
9. A’DAM Lookout
A’DAM Lookout in Amsterdam is a must-visit for those seeking an aerial perspective of the city. The panoramic views from the tower offer dramatic photo opportunities, capturing the city’s skyline, winding canals, and historic architecture. The overhanging swing, known as ‘Europe’s Highest Swing’, adds an adrenaline-fueled twist to your photos. Whether it’s a sweeping cityscape or a thrilling action shot on the swing, A’DAM Lookout promises a unique and unforgettable photographic experience.
Location: Overhoeksplein 5, 1031 KS Amsterdam.
10. Oude Kerk
The Old Church, with its gothic architecture, stands majestically amid the Red-Light District. Inside, the light filters through ancient windows, casting an ethereal glow perfect for photography.
Location: Oudekerksplein 23, 1012 GX Amsterdam.
11. De Wallen (Red Light District)
At night, the Red Light District comes alive with a fusion of neon and history—an opportunity for photographers to capture Amsterdam’s famous nightlife scene in all its complexity.
Location: De Wallen.
This lesser-known area is peaceful and picturesque, offering tranquil canal scenes devoid of the tourist throngs and amazing buildings that were old warehouses like the Warehouses Medan, Bindjeij and Laboean.
Location: 1013 LR Amsterdam.
13. Seven Bridges
The Reguliersgracht, where seven bridges align perfectly, offers a unique perspective and is especially magical at dusk when the bridges light up making it a perfect spot for photos. This is one of the most beautiful areas that will make you wander hours for the best photos.
14. Albert Cuyp Market
The Albert Cuyp Market in Amsterdam offers a view of the dutch lifestyle in the streets, the food and the daily lives that go by. It makes a perfect place for street photography and record those daily mundane routines yet so culturally rich when you observer close by. It is also a food lover’s paradise, offering a plethora of culinary delights. From the popular Flemish fries, fried to perfection and served with a variety of toppings, to the much-loved Kibbling, a market favorite featuring battered and fried fish served with a choice of sauces.
Don’t miss out on Rudi’s Original Stroopwafels, a family-run business offering authentic Stroopwafels made following a traditional recipe from Gouda city.
In addition to these delicacies, the market also offers a wide range of fresh produce and groceries. It’s an ideal spot to immerse yourself in the local culinary scene and savor some traditional Dutch cuisine.
Location: Albert Cuypstraat.
15. EYE Film Museum
The modern architecture of the EYE Film Museum makes for a striking riverside photograph. The building’s sleek lines juxtaposed with the water create an enticing modern Dutch image. it’s also a national treasure that houses more than 54,000 films from all genres. This iconic building is not just a museum, but a celebration of the art of the moving image. From classics and blockbusters to cult films, the collection represents an outstanding sample of film history. The museum also organizes exhibitions at the intersection of film and visual arts, and film programs that shed light on the earliest film history to the most current social developments. Whether you’re a film enthusiast or a casual visitor, the EYE Film Museum offers a unique and immersive cinematic experience, so why not wander around, take inspiration for photos, videos and who knows if we will have the next Steven Spielberg or Sofia Coppola.
Location: IJpromenade 1, 1031 KT Amsterdam.
Purchase Here Your Ticket To The EYE Film Museum
I recall the tranquility of dawn, perched by the Amstel river, camera in hand, as the Skinny Bridge glowed against the pink-hued sky. A moment in time, preserved forever, reminding me that Amsterdam’s soul is captured through patience and an eagerness to see beyond the guidebooks.
To make the most of these photo spots, consider visiting during the “golden hours” of sunrise or sunset for the best natural light. Many locations are within walking distance or a short cycle–embracing Amsterdam’s bike-friendly ethos is an adventure in itself! Additionally, respect the privacy and wishes of locals, particularly in sensitive areas like De Wallen.
Our photographic journey has meandered through hushed dawns and vibrant market scenes, from soaring panoramas to intimate street corners. Amsterdam is an album of endless scenes, each waiting for your lens to click and capture a city that is as welcoming as it is wondrous. Don’t merely take your camera for a walk; let your curiosity guide you, and may each photo you take be a doorway to the stories and memories that Amsterdam offers so generously. Now go forth, explore, and frame your adventure—one shutter click at a time.