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18 Famous Landmarks in Amsterdam to Visit

Grachtengordel (Canal District)

As the capital of the Netherlands, Amsterdam is a city renowned for its many famous landmarks, historic buildings, and incredible museums. Located in the province of North Holland in Western Europe, the city is a virtual treasure trove of Dutch history and culture with galleries, museums, relics, and monuments on every corner.

While Amsterdam is certainly a worthy vacation destination, it’s packed with so many iconic landmarks that it can be hard to narrow down your choices. That’s why we’ve pulled together a handy collection of the city’s best landmarks and tourist attractions.

Along the way, we’ll point you in the direction of great tours and hidden gems that transform a visit to a popular tourist attraction into a memorable experience. We’ll even fill you in on our favorite hotels to help you find the perfect place to stay when you visit Amsterdam.

Pressed for time? No worries – here’s a quick breakdown of the best landmarks in Amsterdam to work into your travel itinerary.


Famous Monuments and Landmarks in Amsterdam

1. Grachtengordel (Canal District)

Grachtengordel (Canal District)
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

As you’ll quickly discover, many of Amsterdam’s most famous landmarks circle the city center, where you’ll find the canal district, aka “Grachtengordel.” The network of 17th-century canals was decreed a UNESCO World Heritage Site a little over a decade ago and remains a must-see attraction.

While you’ll find plenty of canal boat tour options, we recommend setting out with a guy named Captian Jack if you can. Captain Jack will regale you with fun commentary about all the monuments along the cruise as you enjoy the drinks and snacks he provides on his open-air boat.

Our favorite hotels in the Canal District:

2. The Royal Palace Amsterdam

Dam Square with Royal Palace of Amsterdam
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Address: Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal 147, 1012 RJ Amsterdam, Netherlands

Central Amsterdam is also where you’ll find the gorgeous Royal Palace of Amsterdam, a 17th-century palace that originally functioned as a city hall. One of three palaces now at the disposal of the Dutch royal family, the Royal Palace now serves as the official reception palace of King Willem-Alexander.

An important historical site, the Royal Palace is almost always open to visitors, provided it isn’t being used for a special event. Sign up for a palace tour to check out its rich history and beautiful architecture.

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