Getting around and practical info on King's Day
King's Day (formerly Queen’s Day) is one of the busiest days of the year in Amsterdam and public transport in the city centre is affected by restrictions to allow the free movement of people through the city. Here's our guide to getting around, along with some FAQs and practical info to help you navigate the day.
The best way to get to Amsterdam for the King’s Day festivities is by train, although count on encountering busy carriages throughout the day!
Public transport routes are adapted on King’s Day itself, with the buses and trams only running up to the outskirts of the city centre. If you are travelling by metro, please note that the metro stations at Nieuwmarkt and RAI will be closed.
In order to deal with the increased volumes of travellers during the celebrations, modified timetables will be put in place on the evening of 26 April and on King’s Day itself. More information about train travel on King’s Day can be found on the NS website.
There will be no locker facilities available at Amsterdam Central Station on King's Day, so please plan accordingly.
Travelling to & from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
Train services run to Amsterdam Airport Schiphol on King’s Day, but travellers are advised to allow more time than usual for their journeys. If you are staying in Amsterdam, please allow for the fact that there will be no trams in the city centre and you will not be able to reserve a taxi. It may be worth checking to see if you can travel via another station, rather than Amsterdam Central.
The same advice applies to airport passengers stopping over in Amsterdam and those connecting to international trains (see above). If you’re flying into Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and hope to pop into the city, be aware that you might be gone longer than you originally planned (and that the luggage lockers at the station will be out of action on the day)!
Getting around on foot
Large signs are traditionally erected to help you navigate the city, with coloured pedestrian routes guiding the way to major events and points of interest.
Car travel, parking and taxis
Cars may travel around the city as normal on the day preceding King's Day but traffic in the city centre is severely restricted on the day itself with the entire city centre being closed off to cars from 07:30 onwards.
If you do decide to venture into the city by car, look out for restricted parking areas marked by yellow signs.
The majority of the standard taxi stands in the city centre are out of action on King's Day.
Timings and opening hours
The citywide street market begins very early on King’s Day morning, officially at 06:00.
Most events begin at midday.
The street market and nearly all outdoor events finish at 20:00.
Shops are permitted to open on King’s Day, but the majority of high street stores close for the day. For example, shops on the Kalverstraat usually stay closed. Most larger supermarkets do open for part of the day and smaller neighbourhood supermarkets are usually open for business.
Please note that you will need to buy a ticket in advance if you would like to attend one of the major organised parties. More information on the citywide street market and King's Day parties.