Guidebook Updates for the Netherlands

When we learn of critical changes to the information in our guidebooks on the Netherlands, we post them here. (Of course, it's still smart to reconfirm critical transportation and sightseeing details locally.) Armed with a Rick Steves guidebook and these late-breaking updates, you're set for a great trip!

Across the Netherlands

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • TripKey transportation cards no longer available.

Alkmaar & Zaanse Schans

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • The Zaanse Schans Rederij de Schans Rondvaarten boat tour is no longer operating. In its place is Windmill Hopper, which runs less frequently.
  • The Dutch Clock Museum at Zaanse Schans is now the Zaanse Time Museum (Museum Zaanse Tijd).

Amsterdam

  • Tickets for the Anne Frank House now go on sale six weeks in advance (released every Tuesday).
  • Lovers has resumed their hop-on, hop-off boat tours (€27.50/24-hour pass, roughly every 20 minutes, 2 hours, +31 20 530 1090).
  • After cutting ties with the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg in 2022, the Hermitage Amsterdam has rebranded itself as the H'ART Museum and now features rotating exhibits from the Pompidou in Paris, the British Museum in London, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum of Washington, DC.
  • The Noordermarkt (the end of Westerstraat) takes place on Saturdays as well as Mondays.
  • High-speed Thalys trains — which connect Amsterdam and Rotterdam with Brussels (and beyond to Paris) — have been rebranded as, and are now operated by, Eurostar. (Prices have not changed significantly; see our Netherlands Rail Passes and Train Tips page.)
  • For the latter half of 2024 (starting in late June), the Amsterdam-to-London Eurostar route, which is usually a direct train, will require a connection via Brussels, where passengers will undergo border formalities before boarding the cross-channel train. (This is to accommodate renovations at Amsterdam Centraal that require closure of the station's international terminal.) The London-to-Amsterdam service, however, will continue to be direct.

For books printed before April 2023, the following may also apply:

  • Amsterdam's three most popular museums now sell only timed-entry tickets. You'll need to book a timed entry even if you're buying a sightseeing pass (which you can do before you have your pass):
    • We recommend booking tickets for the Van Gogh Museum at least a week in advance. This museum is no longer covered by the I Amsterdam City Card.
    • If the Anne Frank House has sold out of basic admission tickets for time slots that work for you, consider the ticket that includes a 30-minute introductory talk (while about €7 more, these tickets don't tend to sell out as quickly as the basic admission tickets).
    • Though same-day tickets for the Rijksmuseum are often available, it's wise to buy your timed tickets ahead of your visit.
    • In peak season, it's also smart to buy tickets online in advance for the Stedelijk Museum.
  • Guides offering free city tours must now collect a city entertainment tax.
  • Tram #11 is no longer running. (The best way to reach Vondelpark is now via tram #17.)
  • The city now has just two tourist information offices: one inside the Centraal train station, and the other at Schiphol Airport.
  • The Amstelkring Museum is now (once again) called the Our Lord in the Attic Museum (Museum Ons' Lieve Heer op Solder).
  • Amsterdam's city government has banned tours of the Red Light District. But the Prostitution Information Center still offers self-guided tours bookended by an informative talk and Q&A session.
  • Randy Roy's Redlight Tours are no longer in operation.
  • The Westerkerk's free organ concerts are now held on Wednesdays (not Fridays; no concerts in winter). Its tower is temporarily closed for renovation.
  • The EYE Film Institute is now the EYE Filmmuseum.
  • The Canal House Museum is now the Museum of the Canals (Grachtenmuseum).
  • The Museum of Bags and Purses has closed, as have the Biblical Museum and the Reypenaer Tasting Rooms.
  • The 4:20 Coffeeshop is now Strain Hunters Coffeeshop.
  • Rembrandtplein has gotten grittier since our last edition, and its sculptures are gone — we no longer recommend it as a good park for kids.
  • Miniportworld has closed.
  • Café Villa Zeezicht has closed, as have the Atrium University Cafeteria and Ristorante Hostaria.
  • There is no longer a Connexxion shuttle bus that goes to most hotels. A public bus, Connexxion #397, does, however, go to the Leidseplein district.
  • The correct address for La Perla restaurant is Tweede Tuindwarsstraat 14 and 53.
  • B&B Helmers has closed.
  • The Connexxion shuttle bus between Amsterdam and Schiphol Airport now only allows payment by credit card.
  • The bus route to the Aalsmeer Flower Auction from Amsterdam's Centraal Station has been renumbered to #357.
  • Direct Amsterdam to London Eurostar trains are now running.

For books printed before May 2019, the following may also apply:

For books printed before October 2018, the following may also apply:

  • The entrance to the Anne Frank House has moved: Facing the museum, the entrance is now around the right side, in the new modern annex. See its site for new opening hours.
  • The I Amsterdam City Card now covers the Rijksmuseum and the Stedelijk Museum, as well as public transport and a canal cruise.
  • The rules governing tourists' use of the Museumkaart sightseeing pass have changed. The €60 pass, which is bought at participating museums, is now good for just five museum visits over 31 days (instead of unlimited admissions). But, this temporary card can be upgraded to a one-year card offering unlimited admissions to nearly 400 museums. To do so, register your temporary card online. A few days later, a one-year card is mailed to you at the address you give (your hotel in the Netherlands, for example). The temporary card may still be worthwhile for those on a short stay; the one-year card can be a very good deal for those staying longer.
  • The Van Gogh Museum's hours have changed (check their site).
  • All Amsterdam trams are now "cashless." To buy a ticket or pass onboard, you'll have to use a credit card and PIN. Ticket machines at stops accept both coins and credit cards. You can purchase tickets with cash from many points of sale within the city; see the public transport website for details.
  • Many of the city's tram lines have been renumbered and/or rerouted — check the new route map, and double-check local signage in person.
  • A new Amsterdam Metro line (#52) has begun operation from Noord (across the IJ River) to Centraal Station, then through Rokin to the Zuid train station in the south. We recommend getting around by tram instead of underground metro, but this line can be helpful for reaching sights in Rokin and in the Museumplein area.
  • From Schiphol Airport, bus route #197 into town is now bus #397 (it still departs from platform B9 in front of the airport).
  • The Civic Guards Gallery at the Amsterdam Museum is now called the Amsterdam Gallery.
  • The Rijksmuseum at Schiphol Airport has reopened.
  • Maes B&B has closed.
  • Hotel van Onna is no longer a standalone hotel, but is now an annex of Mr. Jordaan Hotel.
  • The following eateries have closed: La Place Cafeteria, Dwars Restaurant, Los Pilones Mexican, and the Marks & Spencer mini-grocery.

Arnhem

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

Delft

  • The Prinsenhof Museum now expects to remain open (before closing for a giant renovation project) through at least September 2024.

For books printed before April 2023, the following may also apply:

  • The Delftse Pauw Delftware Factory has closed.
  • Hotel de Emauspoort has been transformed into an apartment building and is no longer a hotel.

Edam, Volendam & Marken

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • Ton Tweewielers bike shop in Edam has closed.

Haarlem

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • The tourist information office no longer offers walking tours (nor stocks walking tour brochures), and they no longer offer discounted or combo tickets to the Frans Hals or Teylers museums.
  • Het Dolhyus psychiatric museum has been rebranded as Museum of the Mind.

The Hague

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • The Binnenhof (parliament) has begun extensive renovations that may extend into the late 2020s.

Historic Triangle

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • Rondje Hoorn City Tours has closed.

Flavoland

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • Batavia Yard (Bataviawerf) and the Nieu Land Museum in Lelystad are now combined into one exhibition called "Batavialand."

Keukenhof & Aalsmeer

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • The Aalsmeer Royal FloraHolland flower auction now mostly takes place online; visitors to the flower marketplace will likely see silent auction halls filled only with flowers, not bidders. A new 30-minute audio tour available on the Izi Travel app describes two dozen different stops along the overhead walkway above the market.
  • The bus route to the flower auction from Amsterdam's Centraal Station has been renumbered to 357. Our driving directions to the auction should read: From the A-4 expressway south of Amsterdam, drivers take the Aalsmeer exit (#3) and follow signs for Aalsmeer, then FloraHolland.

Leiden

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • The Lakenhal Museum, with its collection of Golden Age art, has reopened (€12.50, Tue–Sun 10:00–17:00).

Utrecht

For books printed before April 2023, the following may apply:

  • The Grocery Museum has closed.