TotalGuide to Amsterdam for kids

Body Worlds

BODY WORLDS Amsterdam will take you on a fascinating journey through the human body. The exhibition displays real plastinated bodies, giving you a unique peek into our anatomy and how our bodies work.

The BODY WORLDS Amsterdam exhibitions have undergone significant changes and taken on different incarnations throughout the years. From the effects of health, sports and diet to the anatomy of animals, BODY WORLDS Amsterdam has been reinventing itself over and over again and educating people in novel ways since its conception.

The exhibitions are the creation of Dr. Gunther von Hagens, who invented the process of plastination in the University of Heidelberg in 1977. The original exhibitions have been the subject of imitation by countless copycats, but they remain unmatched in terms of quality and innovation.

Vondelpark

The lungs of the city, Vondelpark was until recently the only public park in the world where one could legally barbecue, smoke joints and have sex. The latter has since been outlawed (again), but there’s still a relaxed vibe to this green giant’s vast open spaces and wooded trails.

Locals come here to run, cycle, play sports or just chill, and there are plenty of activities for those looking to make a day of it. Don’t miss the beautiful rose garden or the famous open-air theatre where, if you’re lucky, you might catch an impromptu show.

Bike Ride

Cycling is one of the best ways to get around Amsterdam, and no visitor should leave without experiencing the city’s world famous bike culture.

Even if you only pedal around for a few hours, riding a bike is an essential Amsterdam experience. Renting a bike or taking a guided cycle tour is a great way to discover the city and can be quite an adventure. Exploring the city on a bike lets you see more in a day, while blending in with the locals at the same time.

Amsterdam Zoo

ARTIS Amsterdam Royal Zoo was the first zoo to be established in the Netherlands, and it’s located right in the centre of Amsterdam. It’s a place where nature and cultural heritage come together; a place where history has been created since 1838 and where new stories are created daily. Come experience them for yourself.

Be amazed by the many species living side by side in the Forest House and Bird House. Discover the tiniest organisms at ARTIS-Micropia, the world’s only microbe museum. Take a trip through space inside the ARTIS-Planetarium. Watch the giraffes, zebras, ostriches and springboks intermingling on the Savannah.

Feel the fluttering of countless wings in the Butterfly Pavilion. Admire the tropical fish swimming in the vast Aquarium. Stroll through the historical city park with its centuries-old trees and wealth of plants. Delight your taste buds at café-restaurant de Plantage. Or relax in a chair near the fountain on Artisplein.

Micropia

Micropia is an award-winning museum located near Amsterdam East (Oost) as part of the Artis-Amsterdam Royal Zoo.

Micropia is the only microbe museum of its kind. The gallery was opened in an attempt to show that the billions of living organisms that can be found everywhere and in everything, known as microbes, are not all bad, scary things, but are instead also produced in order to help in the functioning of daily life, including for human health.

Madame Tussauds

Madame Tussauds’ collection of wax figures has recently been transformed into the place to be for both young and old. Be as beautiful as Doutzen Kroes on the catwalk, sing on stage with the outrageous Lady Gaga or test your IQ with Einstein.

The new IamArt exhibition at Madame Tussauds allows you to literally get inside the masterpieces of Dutch Masters like Piet Mondriaan, Vincent van Gogh and Rembrandt van Rijn. Get lost in one of Escher’s paintings and produce your own work of art in Herman Brood’s studio. Come face to face with great artists like Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dali, and accompany Mona Lisa in one of the best known portraits ever created

Take a look behind the scenes on a film set with some of the world’s best actors. Would you dare to interview Hannibal from Silence of the Lambs? How about dressing up like secret agent James Bond? And don’t forget to pose for a picture with Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and George Clooney.

The Maritime Museum

Built in 1656, the former national naval warehouse was once used by the Dutch navy to store sails, ropes, weapons and ammunition. Since 1973 it has been home to the National Maritime Museum, known as the Scheepvaartmuseum in Dutch.

The National Maritime Museum invites visitors to discover how the sea has shaped Dutch culture. In this freshly modernised museum, stimulating, interactive exhibitions let visitors explore 500 years of maritime history. There are a variety of exhibitions, including many especially for children. Notably, the famous replica of the Dutch East India Company ship ‘Amsterdam’ is moored at the museum, so visitors can climb on board and explore it.

The National Maritime Museum offers a complete day out for families with children. There are various interactive and educational exhibitions for children of all ages such as The Tale of the Whale. In the meanwhile, parents and grandparents amuse themselves with the varying exhibitions and permanent collection.

NEMO Science Museum

In the centre of Amsterdam stands one of the most modern architectural highpoints of the capital city. In the green building of the Italian architect Renzo Piano you find NEMO, the largest science museum in the Netherlands. From its roof top square you can admire an amazing view over Amsterdam.

Using a variety of playful exhibitions, NEMO Science Museum introduces young and old to the world of science and technology. Its five floors are filled with continuously updated exhibitions, theatre performances, films, workshops and demonstrations, making it a favourite of kids in Amsterdam. Smell, hear, feel and see how the world works. Everything is interactive, so everyone can join in with the fun and learning, especially in NEMO’s Laboratory.

NEMO also has a great surprise on the outside. Its sloping roof with an outdoor café offers fantastic views of Amsterdam city centre. While up there, there’s plenty to learn about generating power from the elements via the permanent ‘Energetica’ exhibition.

Johan Cruyff Arena

Johan Cruijff ArenA (formerly Amsterdam ArenA) is the home of AFC Ajax football club and is the largest sporting stadium in the Netherlands. Located at the south-eastern part of the city the stadium is open to the public for various guided tours.

Tours are available to experience the excitement of the Johan Cruijff ArenA Stadium which can be conducted in either Dutch or English. During the tour, your enthusiastic guide will take you to see the dugout and also the holy pitch.

In addition, you’ll have the opportunity to go behind the scenes, with special access to areas that are normally reserved for only players and officials. Guide’s will also take you into the official dressing room of Ajax, when it is not in use on match days or during training sessions.

Don’t miss this chance to feel the thrill of the history of this iconic site.

Bridge of 15 Bridges

There is one bridge which is known as “Brug van 15 bruggen” from which you can see a total of 15 bridges in different directions. This viewpoint is located where Reguliersgracht joins Herengracht. Stand on the odd-numbered side and you can see 6 arched bridges across the Reguliersgracht. Look down Herengracht to the left and you see another 6 bridges. Furthermore, two more bridges are visible to your right. Finally, the 15th bridge is the one you’re standing on.

If you are travelling with that special someone, this spot is a must-see on your itinerary as it is one of the most romantic places in Amsterdam.

Ripleys Believe it or not

Ready for something completely different? Blow your mind at Amsterdam’s weirdest museum experience. Ripley’s Amsterdam packs five floors with over 500 genuine bizarre artefacts and a stunning panoramic view over Amsterdam’s famous Dam Square.

Start with the real Bugatti made of wood and incredible Hulk made only of bolts. Learn about the curious Robert Ripley and his eye-popping collection, including deformed Amazonian skulls, and a real Fabergé egg. Meet a massive robot made from car parts, and a bonafide T-rex skull. Take a selfie with Robert Wadlow, the tallest man in history, or Bobby Blackburn, the man with crocodile teeth.

Test your balance in the spinning tunnel, explore a replica Dutch windmill, and crawl into a piece of cheese. See how Amsterdam would look under water and learn about its music scene. Strap on your seatbelts in the moving 5D cinema for the ride of your life, and relax with a coffee in the lounge, enjoying an unforgettable view over Amsterdam’s famous Dam Square.

Madurodam Miniature Village

Although not located in Amsterdam, If you are looking for a day out then this is a place the kids will love.

Madurodam is a miniature park and a major tourist attraction in The Hague, Netherlands. The park is located in the Scheveningen district of the city and features miniature 1:25 scale model replicas of the most famous Dutch castles, industrial projects and public buildings. Guests are treated to a trip through the history of the country and its famous buildings. Not only that, but they can also enjoy a hands-on experience while exploring the park.

The park features a number of hands-on experiences that help to make Madurodam more interactive and fun for visitors of all ages. Visitors can even load containers onto a cargo ship in the miniature port of Rotterdam, help a plane take off at Schiphol airport or prevent a great flood by operating the Oosterscheldekering storm surge barrier.

De Poezenboot

If you’re a cat lover visiting Amsterdam and you’re up for a relaxing moment away from the busy city, make sure to pay a visit to The Catboat.

The Catboat (De Poezenboot) is a unique houseboat that is turned into an animal shelter. Founded by Henriette van Weelde in 1966 as a home for stray, sick, and abandoned felines, and has since grown into an official charity.

The house boat accommodates up to 50 cats at once, 14 of which are permanent residents. Human visitors are welcome on the vessel as well. Many come to choose a cat for adoption, but tourists are also welcome to drop in and scratch a kitty behind the ears.

De Poezenboot is in central Amsterdam, around a 10 minute walk from the main station. It’s open daily from 1 until 3 PM but closed on Wednesdays and Sundays.

Febo

Visiting Amsterdam and craving a snack? If so, FEBO (Fay-Bo) is the place to be.

FEBO offers a wide variety of snacks to satisfy your craving, from tasty fries with sauce, to deep-fried cheese, a minced-meat hotdog and a croquette (in Dutch: kroket) on a roll.

Sure, you can always find these products in any other snack bar in Holland, but FEBO is the only place you can pull them out of a wall. Many a tourist has stood in amazement in front of the FEBO snack wall. Rows of ‘kroketten’, hamburgers and minced-meat hotdogs behind tiny glass windows, just waiting for a hungry passerby.

After feeding your coins into the slot, you just open the glass compartment, and you’re ready to sink your teeth into a fresh, hot snack.

Powerzone

Powerzone is one of Amsterdam’s newest attractions, located just a short walk from Central Station. Featuring laser gaming and bowling in a unique location overlooking the IJ river, Lovers Powerzone is fun for all ages.

Action-filled fun Take your friends or family to Powerzone for action-packed laser gaming. You’ll come under attack in mysterious surroundings, crawling through crevices and hiding behind oil drums.

Will you be on the winning team? You can also challenge your pals to a game of bowling on one of the six glow in the dark bowling alleys with breath-taking views of the harbour. When you’re ready to relax, you can enjoy a drink, snack or complete dinner at the modern on-site restaurant.

Knijn Bowling

Knijn Bowling is a family business established in 1971. More than 40 years later, this Amsterdam bowling alley remains one of the most renowned in the city and it’s also much more than just a place to throw a strike.

When it comes to knocking over pins, Knijn hosts weekly special events for business networking and children’s parties, while the late-night ‘disco bowling’ sessions on Friday and Saturday are popular with the younger crowd – the lighting turns psychedelic and dance tunes blast out as the pins are sent crashing!

Knijn is also a hotspot to fill up on food and drink. The restaurant Me@t Paul and the adjoining bistro offer everything from à-la-carte dining to more casual grill and buffet party offerings – even if you don’t feel like playing. Although, if you do also fancy taking to the lanes, there are a number of special arrangements available for business groups and family parties.

Flevoparkbad

The Flevoparkbad is an outdoor swimming pool located on the edge of the spacious Flevopark in Amsterdam Oost. Here you’ll find an Olympic-size (50-metre) pool for swimming laps, a much shallower pool for children, and a wading pool for toddlers. It is surrounded by green with plenty of room for soaking up the sun and there is also a large playground. The swimming pool is open every year from the end of April through the beginning of September.

The Amsterdam Dungeon

Always a popular tourist attraction in the old heart of the city. With its different shows and actors and 500 years of dark history, the Amsterdam Dungeon is certainly a thrilling experience.

Laugh and scream at the sight of cackling witches; see, smell, listen and be afraid. Be very afraid. The full cast of professional, theatrical actors play gruesome characters, such as the (not-so) fair judge and the devilish torturer.

The Dungeon also offers late-night events, where visitors are admitted to the building after hours for extra gruesome experiences, spiced up with scary drinks and snacks. Pre-booking is recommended.