Things to do in Nieuw-West
Nieuw-West (New West) is the largest and greenest neighbourhood of Amsterdam meaning it has tons of indoor and outdoor activities to keep you occupied. From Rembrandtpark all the way up to the historic village of Sloten, you’ll find opportunities for relaxation and recreation, including fascinating museums, markets and walking routes to explore, watersports, music events and culinary festivals.
Visit a historic windmill
Entering the ancient village of Sloten feels a bit like stepping back in time. Here you’ll find the Sloten Windmill Museum – one of the few fully functioning polder mills in the Netherlands where you can learn all about milling techniques as well as how Rembrandt, the son of a miller, grew up. Need a pick me up afterwards? Head next door to Brouwerij de 7 Deugden, one of the city’s best microbreweries, for a delicious craft beer. Craving something sweet? Pop over to IJshoeve Sloten for some delicious artisanal ice cream.
Unwind in the Gardens of West
Spend a wholesome outdoorsy day exploring the farmland, greenhouses, stables and huge orchards of Fruittuin van West, an organic farm where you can pick your own fruit. When you’ve made your way out from the undergrowth, settle down at Het Rijk van de Keizer for a refuel. This stunning restaurant serves lavish lunches and refreshments from a concealed courtyard that feels like a fairytale garden. On the agenda, you’ll also find a range of dinner evenings and cooking workshops for groups.
Spend a day by the lake
At the end of Jan Evertsenstraat is Sloterplas, a huge lake and urban beach surrounded by the green and spacious Sloterpark. In addition to the joggers, fishers, swimmers and watersports fans, more and more people are finding their way to this picturesque spot for a relaxing picnic, boat trip or a brisk dip. To give your day out some proper beachy vibes, why not pop by LAWA for a delicious Turkish ice cream made from goat's milk.
Try not to fall in
For anyone seeking a bit more action and adventure, Nieuw West is a haven for watersports and sailing enthusiasts. On the opposite side, De Duikelaar, located at the Northernmost tip of the Sloterplas lake and Watersport Centrum, offer all kinds of rentals and courses for some splashy fun. Check out their options to hire a canoe, kayak, windsurf, sailboat or SUP for the day or take part in one of the many sailing courses for children and adults.
Discover urban art and architecture
See Nieuw-West like never before with a guided walking tour by one of the experts from the Street Art Museum. Walk past beautiful murals as you hear the stories behind the works of art: who made it, what techniques, and what message? Nearby, the Van Eesteren Museum, dedicated to the architect and urban planner Cornelis van Eesteren (a.k.a the man who made Nieuw-West so spacious and green in the post-war years), offers something different. The exhibits are spread between indoor and outdoor spaces; take a walk through the partially protected cityscape of Tuinstad Slotermeer, then head into one of the pavilions or accompanying museum houses to learn about design and fashion from the 1950s. Head over to this guide to art and culture in Nieuw West for more.
Explore an urban vineyard and beer bar
Former office and business park Sloterdijk is changing at a rapid pace and always with an innovative twist. For example, Bret douses this slightly grey corner with a splash of colour and fun. It's a beer bar and restaurant with a spectacular garden rooftop surrounded by its own urban vineyard. Everything about the venue promotes sustainability and innovation, from the hops grown on-site to the structure made from shipping containers. Oh, and they also host some magical club nights, so keep an eye on their music agenda.
Spot some wildlife
Whether you're on a stroll through Sloterplas and the surrounding Sloterpark, along De Nieuwe Meer or Rembrandtpark, you’ll quickly see how Nieuw West is one of the greenest and most spacious neighbourhoods in Amsterdam. Seeking an even wilder adventure? Venture into the Lange Bretten nature reserve - a vast green wilderness where you can spot buzzards, falcons and other wildlife species. As you stroll along the dykes and through the wetland areas, keep your eye out for goats and hairy Scottish Highlanders.
Eat in some unique locations
Dispersed amongst the former business parks of Nieuw West, you’ll find some cool restaurants, bars and event spaces that have set up shop in some pretty unusual buildings. Take, for example, RADION, a nightclub and cultural breeding ground located in a former dental centre with an in-house restaurant open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Likewise, De School - an event space in a workshop for training car mechanics - also boasts the fantastic Restaurant DS where the decor will take you right back to your classroom years. The roof terraces at Bureau and Floor17 offer the rare (in Amsterdam) opportunity to tower high above the city, enjoying great food and exceptional views. One last spot worth mentioning is Hotel Buiten - a lakeside café-restaurant built from shipping containers and recycled materials. For more foodie hotspots, check out this round-up of restaurants and bars in Nieuw West.
Feel the festival vibes
Nieuw West’s expansive green spaces have long been fertile ground for the city’s event organisers, meaning that the neighbourhood hosts some of the best festivals in town. In the summer, head to the Sloterplas strand to catch a summer movie under the stars during the West Beach Film Festival - one of the best open-air cinema events on the cultural calendar. Meanwhile, Rembrandtpark regularly hosts some of the tastiest culinary events, including the West TAPT Beer Festival, Fête du Champagne and the Terrassenfestival. Keep an eye on our Weekend Guide and What’s On calendar for the latest happenings.
Experience the nightlife
For anyone who likes to dance, dance, dance, the repurposed office buildings and warehouses of Nieuw West have been transformed into some of the city’s most exciting spaces for electronic music. Sustainable restaurant by day, intimate clubbing venue by night: the red shipping containers at BRET have witnessed some memorable parties in recent years. Since its inception decades back, Warehouse Elementenstraat has been one of the most highly regarded venues for electronic music in the Netherlands. RADION is one of the most exciting underground spaces in town, boasting an eclectic agenda of club nights, parties and cultural events. Not to mention Loveland and Mystic Garden Festival, two major dance music festivals which occur annually in Sloterpark.
Bargain hunt and taste the world
There’s no better way to get a feel for a neighbourhood than checking out where the locals shop. Ideal for fruit and veg, clothing and daily essentials, Markt Plein 40-45 is the largest and liveliest street market in the area. Awash with chatty vendors and bargain-hunters, the market square is a true meeting place, open from Tuesday - Saturday. Anyone looking to taste the world will do well exploring the Westmarket Food Court at Osdorpplein (open daily except Sunday). Get stuck into a range of cuisines from Surinamese roti and Turkish pizzas to noodles, paella, shoarma, and doner kebabs.
Have a sporty afternoon
Grab your sports gear from the closet, because there are countless activities for work-out enthusiasts in Nieuw-West. Urban fitness freaks can get to work at the callisthenics park in Osdorp, whilst climbers can reach new heights at Klimhal. Alternatively, try your hand at padel (a cross between tennis and squash and the fastest growing sport in the Netherlands) at Padel Dam or Play Padel Club. Or, imagine yourself at a French campsite with a game of jeu de boules at the Valutaboulevard (glass of rosé optional).
Speaking of keeping fit, the many parks and lakeside paths of Nieuw West make for some superb jogging routes. A circuit around Sloterplas Lake is approximately 6km and very popular with novice runners due to its handy measuring points. When you’re feeling up to the challenge, why not participate in the Sloterplasloop running event in October? This scenic race has both 10 and 5k entry points as well as a 1.5k children’s route.