Whether you’re a party animal or a romantic, young of years or young-at-heart, a big spender or on a budget, Amsterdam is a great city to ring in the New Year. The Dutch know how to have a good time and the capital is a gezellige (warm and friendly) host. If you make one last resolution this year, decide to spend New Year’s in Amsterdam.
Celebrations across Amsterdam
Last year, the Oosterdok area was the location for the city’s official celebrations, with the VOC Ship, Science Center NEMO and the Scheepvaartmuseum forming the backdrop for a spectacular New Year’s Eve in Amsterdam.
The New Year’s programme kicked off at 23:15, reviewing 2012 and looking forward to 2013: a special year which sees Amsterdam celebrate several incredible milestones. And as you would expect, a spectacular fireworks display was part of the entertainment to help everyone see the year off with a bang!
Street parties and club nights
The compact, easy to navigate city centre lends itself particularly well to impromptu street parties. In almost every public square, throngs of people from all over the world join in the festivities.
Nieuwmarkt (Chinatown), Leidseplein and Rembrandtplein are all popular hotspots in the city centre. Clubs throughout the city host events catering to all musical tastes, check out our New Year's Eve party listing to find out what's in store.
Eat, drink and be merry
Locals and visitors alike usually enjoy dinner before heading out to celebrate. Many restaurants offer special menus and a wide range of dining options to suit every budget and taste. If you like clubbing you’ve come to the right place, as Amsterdam is brimming with bars and clubs! To find out what's on, check out our New Year's Eve party listing.
All that activity needs some energy to fuel it! On New Year’s Eve (and the month leading up to it), the Dutch enjoy traditional sweet treats called ‘oliebollen’ (delicious round doughnuts coated with icing sugar) and ‘appelflappen’ (tasty apple fritters). They can be found at stands across the city. Be sure to get your fill as they tend to disappear come the New Year. Besides, the diet can always start next year…
New Year's Day
Has indulgence left you feeling a little bloated or bleary-eyed? Spend the first day of the New Year on a tranquil cruise of the canals, take a brisk walk through the Vondelpark or go Dutch and rent a bicycle to meander through the charming cobble-stoned streets of the Jordaan. If you’re feeling a little let down now that festive December has passed into somber January, the good news is that the January sales in Amsterdam are tremendous for bargain-hunters and shopaholics alike!