Red Light District
The be all and end all of the nightlife in Amsterdam, it would be rude not to enjoy at least an hour of the night in the red light district. There’s multiple reasons that this area of the Dam is so popular, and the bars, pubs and clubs is a few of them! With so many neon lights and buzzing music, it’s much easier to narrow down the best venues before you arrive and get overwhelmed. One unique venue that’s not to be missed is Casa Rosso. The number one live sex show in Amsterdam, Casa Rosso is a one of a kind experience that everyone visiting the Netherlands capital should enjoy at least once.
Obviously, sex shows aren’t for everyone – especially if you’ve invited your mum-in-law! There’s plenty of quirky bars and fantastic clubs to dip in and out of while avoiding anything too frisky. One bar to try is Belushi’s, a sleek and stylish watering hole that prides itself on impeccable cocktails all year round. Alternatively, immerse yourself in a more relaxed, American-diner at BigShots Bar. Bigshots stocks all your classic liquor plus it’s a great place for any late-night munchies you might have.
It’s no secret that the number of coffeeshops for legal highs is a big reason why Amsterdam is so popular, especially for younger crowds. So coffeeshops also serve drink in a more laid-back atmosphere like the world-famous BullDog café. On the opposite end of the spectrum, The Dutch love their locally brewed beers! You can find a unique crossover between proper Irish pubs and delicious, locally brewed beers here in Amsterdam and the red light district. One popular venue that combines Dutch hospitality with Irish décor is Molly Malone’s.
Leidseplein is definitely a place you have to explore during your Amsterdam weekend, this area is one of the major centres of Amsterdam’s nightlife. Here you will find bars, clubs, pubs and cafes, and you will find that most are open until 5am! Leidseplein is all about tourists for shopping and night time entertainment, so you’re sure to be looked after in this district of the capital. Probably the best area for a pub/bar crawl, there’s lots of little venues for casual drinking, like Irish pubs Dan Murphy’s and the Hoopman which are just a stones throw away from one another.
Just further down from the rowdy Irish pubs that grace Leidseplein are a few more chilled, modern-style bars to sink your teeth into. If you’re a fan of fancy cocktails and low lighting, NJOY is a small but sweet bar that sleek and stylish. Pair your visit to NJOY with some dancing at Club Candela just next door! This 2-storey nightclub has all the classics including karaoke and late-night DJ’s until 5am on weekends.
The BullDog legacy extends itself from the red light district to Leidseplein with the impressive Bulldog Palace. A coffeeshop stroke cocktail bar, it has a huge outdoor patio area that will easily fit a big group of giggling girls. If you’re a big fan of jazz music, Leidseplein is home to the longstanding Jazz Café Alto. You’ll see the venue a mile away with the giant saxophone hung outside, and inside you’re greeted with cozy vibes full of music and friendly faces.
Rembrandtplein is considered as the heart of Amsterdam’s nightlife and a real hotspot to head to during your Amsterdam celebration, especially since it is home to many of the city’s most popular clubs and bars! More on the touristy side, you can get a glimpse of what Amsterdam offers while still having a classic last night of freedom. Probably the most popular bar in this district of the capital is the Xtra Cold Ice Bar! Exactly what it says on the tin. This venue features one normal bar before throwing on a coat, hat and gloves and heading into the ice bar. Drink from ice glasses and marvel at the ice sculptures in this unique nightlife experience.
Of course, there are a lot warmer venues in Rembrandtplein if you’re not a fan of the cold head to Lunar Bar on Halvemaansteeg and immerse yourself in bright lights and LGBTQ+ culture. Top tip – this bar has some incredibly different cocktails to tantalise your taste buds if you want to broaden your drinking horizons! Pair your visit to Lunar Bar with a bit of hilarious karaoke at Karaokebar 24K right next door. With a sleek style, you can get straight in and sing your heart out in the little booths.
Amsterdam nightlife is pretty ahead of the times, and you can find plenty of quirky décor to snap a pic or two! The whole of Rembrandtplein is a perfect example of this, with high seating and crazy murals to entertain your girls while sipping on cocktails. When the night gets later and your vision gets blurrier, there’s only one place to go – AIR nightclub. A multi-tiered dancefloor, cutting edge electronic music and 5 vibrant bars all in one venue to make the last night of freedom one to remember.