Living in the Amsterdam Area

The Amsterdam Area includes a stretch of the North Sea Coast, newly formed cities like Almere and Lelystad and the harbourside villages north of Amsterdam. More and more international residents are choosing to live in the areas beyond Amsterdam city centre, where there is a greater choice of housing (including new housing developments), international schools with capacity for new students and easy transport connections.


Amsterdam and the surrounding region

The Amsterdam Area lies north of the Randstad and encompasses the provinces of North Holland and Flevoland. Whether you’re drawn to the relaxed lifestyle of a beachside dwelling, a quaint Dutch village with windmills in the distance or city bursting with nightlife and culture, there’s an area of the Amsterdam region for you. Compared with other European capitals, the Amsterdam Area is relatively compact and well connected by public transport and motorways, meaning that wherever you and your family choose to live, you’re rarely more than 30 minutes from the centre of Amsterdam.

Explore the region

Markermeer ↑ Den Helder ↑ Bergen Heerhugowaard Alkmaar Heiloo Hoorn Castricum Purmerend Edam Volendam Velsen Zaanstad Marken Lelystad Almere IJmuiden Oostzaan Zandvoort Haarlem Heemstede Amsterdam Airport Schiphol Amstelveen Diemen Muiden Hoofddorp Aalsmeer Ouder Amstel Bussum Naarden Huizen Blaricum Uithoorn Laren Hilversum AMSTERDAM Alkmaar, Bergen & Hoorn Zaanstreek & Waterland IJmond, Zandvoort & Castricum Haarlem & Heemstede Haarlemmermeer, Aalsmeer & Uithoorn Amsterdam, Amstelveen & Diemen Hilversum, the Gooi & Vechtstreek Almere & Lelystad
The Amsterdam Area
Each part of the Amsterdam Area has its own unique character, local attractions and industries. Click on an area to see what it has to offer.

Find your new home in the Amsterdam Area

Map it Out // Plan your journey in the Amsterdam Area

Find out just how quick and convenient it is to travel around the Amsterdam Area with our interactive tool. Calculate your commute time by comparing various modes of transport, whether you prefer public transport, cycling, driving or a combination of options.

Quiz: Where should you live in the Amsterdam Area?

Moving to the Amsterdam Area? Find out which part of the region will make you feel right at home by answering some quick questions about your personality and interests.

Living in the Amsterdam Area

Download a guide to the Amsterdam Area (pdf)

Life in the Amsterdam Area

Amsterdam, Amstelveen & Diemen

A close connection to central Amsterdam. These cities enjoy a prime location at the centre of the Amsterdam Area.

Almere & Lelystad

Almere waterfront
Experience modern living in Amsterdam’s newest satellite cities.

Haarlem & Heemstede

Embrace history and culture in a mini Amsterdam. Haarlem has a lively community of 150,000 residents.

Haarlemmermeer, Aalsmeer & Uithoorn

Harlemmermeer flower fields
Haarlemmermeer and the area surrounding Amsterdam Airport Schiphol connects Amsterdam with the world.

Hilversum, the Gooi & Vechtstreek

Living in Green Amsterdam: A region filled with possibilities.

Alkmaar, Bergen & Hoorn

Alkmaar terrace
An authentic Holland and rural and lakeside surroundings await north of Amsterdam.

IJmond, Zandvoort and Castricum

Relaxed living and an active lifestyle around Amsterdam’s coastline.

Zaanstreek & Waterland

Amsterdam Beemster polder windmill
Living alongside the cultural and industrial heritage of Amsterdam’s harbours.

Tips for relocating to the region

Move to Amsterdam in 7 steps

Settling into Amsterdam life can be relatively straightforward, especially if you plan and arrange as much as you can before relocating. Check out the...

Everyday essentials

Whether you're moving to Amsterdam, newly arrived or an established citizen, here you can look up official information on day-to-day living, including...

Find out about schools

Select the right school for your child with information on international primary and secondary schools for English-speaking and bilingual students.

Look for housing

Read up on renting, buying property, mortgages and housing rights to help with finding your new home in the Amsterdam Area.