With its picturesque medieval centre, grand 17th-century canal houses and buzzing neighbourhoods, Amsterdam truly has something for all tastes. To experience the city like a local, however, escape the tourist-filled centre and go a bit further afield. Luckily, in compact Amsterdam, that only involves a short bike ride or walk. Then you can start to discover what really makes the city tick, from world-class Dutch design stores to organic wine bars and top-notch restaurants.
When to go:
Amsterdam is most enjoyable in spring and summer, when café terraces overflow onto the canal-side streets and the parks are filled with evening picnickers.
How to get around:
Unsurprisingly, the traditional and most scenic way to get around is by bike. However, Amsterdam also has an excellent tram, bus and metro network that will get you almost everywhere, eventually.