Lead Article:Fun Things to Do in Amsterdam for €1 or Less
We get that you’d rather spend your hard saved travel funds on seeing more of the world and the fun stuff so that’s why we’ve been scouring Amsterdam in search of amazing attractions, that you can enjoy for just 1 euro or less!
Free Walking Tours
If you’re keen to see the city’s sights and learn more about the history, from a hyper- informed tour guide, look no further than the fun and free services of Sandeman Tours. No fee is demanded for the several-hour long, guided city exploration – instead they simply request that you tip your guide if you think they did a good job.
If you fancy flexing your synaptic muscles, take yourself down to Max Euwe Centrum for a free game of chess! This centre is dedicated to the game and is free all, from Monday to Thursday, between 12:00 noon and 16:00. You’ll find this place down on Max Euweplein 30II, 1017 MB Amsterdam. www.maxeuwe.nl
It’s cheesy, mass produced and not everyone’s cup of tea but when you’re feeling the night before or you just need a cheap tasty treat, you can’t go wrong with the one euro burger at good old McDonalds. There are several in Amsterdam, including one located conveniently close to the downtown, on Nieuwendijk.
Green spaces can be hard to come by in a city as compact as Amsterdam but luckily enough, there’s a huge park on the doorstep for everyone staying at the Flying Pig Uptown hostel. Vondelpark is quite literally just out of the hostel’s front door, and the scenic stress busting walks here - past the water features, trees and bandstands - cost nothing.
Friday Night Skate
If you’re looking for exercise on holiday without having to fork out for a gym pass or a hot yoga session, then how about a Friday night rollerblade through the city streets? If you have your own wheels, this weekly meet is free to all and starts in the Vondelpark, just next to the Flying Pig Uptown hostel. It then goes on a circuit taking in the canals and the harbour, before returning to the park. Find out more about the where, the when and the theme, online.
photo: Franck Hakkert www.fridaynightskate.com
Take a Free Ferry Ride
Canal boat tours of Amsterdam can cost a small fortune, so instead why not hop a free ferry ride from Amsterdam to the shipyard in the cool, new, and regenerated - Berlinesque area.The ferry connecting Amsterdam to Berlinesque is a commuter service and just like the Staten Island Ferry in New York – it’s free for all foot passengers who come aboard. www.ndsm.nl/en
Get Your Beach On
When you think of Amsterdam you don’t automatically picture sandy beaches and sunbathing … that is until now. The city does in fact offer several top notch, urban beaches, complete with swimming options and sunbathing on the sand. To swim head to Blijburg, Muiderlaan 1001 Amsterdam and for quality beach time, try Strand West, Stavangerweg 900 Amsterdam.
Everyone feels the call of nature when they’re out and about exploring, but finding public loos in Amsterdam is a nightmare, plus cafes and restaurants don’t let you nip in without a purchase! This hen begs the question - what do you do when you need the loo? Well let us tell you. You head to the Restroom Shop on Kalverstraat, where for 50 cents you can go in peace, in a clean place with soap and everything! Also for every visit you also get a coupon to spend on products in the gift shop!
- Max Waverly
Amsterdam Events: Coming up in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is full to brim with events over the next three months. Match your trip to what’s coming up, using our handy event forecast.
- JULY -
Robeco Summer Concerts - Throughout July and August: Great classical music performed at the beautiful Amsterdam Concertgebouw.
Amsterdam Gay Pride - July 26 to August 3, 2014: Known the world over for hosting the summer's premier pride events, Amsterdam turns from orange into Rainbow this July for a week of LGBT celebrations. Anyone in town can look forward to canal processions, street parties, clubbing events and all things fun.
- AUGUST -
Grachtenfestival Amsterdam - August 15 to 24, 2014: This ten-day classical music festival is set to attract more than 50,000 visitors, with beautiful productions and line ups, indoors and by the water.
The Uitmarkt - August 29 to 31, 2014: The Uitmarkt symbolises the beginning of the new cultural season with a mesmerising line up of theatre, music, books and films over the last weekend of August.Photo by Cris Toala Olivares / Michael Kooren.
Appelsap Fresh Music Festival - August 9, 2014: Otherwise known as Apple Juice this music festival is all about what's fresh, acoustically speaking. Hosted on a Sauturday in Oosterpark, new tunes are paired with tasty drinks, Hip-Hop, Electro and DJ sets!
Line Up on Appelsap
- SEPTEMBER -
Lady Gaga - September 24, 2014: Pop princess Lady Gaga arrives in Amsterdam on her European tour - artRAVE: The ARTPOP Ball. Expect impossible dance moves and costumer changes, plus some sterling leadership from mother monster.
Check out the Facebook Page for more details - as we unveil them!
Music Reviews From The Flying Pig
Do It Again by Robyn and Röyksopp
Now it is a mini-album which means that we’re only treated to five songs worth of new material, but it’s flawlessly produced – making each song a true treat, to be listened to again, and again, and again …
The lead track and album namesake – Do It Again – is my favourite. It’s is a get-up-and-go- clubbing-immediately, kinda' tune, with tubthumping electro-pop rhythms, inspired by an epic night out. The title ties into those on- again, off-again relationships that we've all seen and been a part of, and folds in some truly impressive synths, not to mention a string of rather catchy drumbeats. Robyn herself dubbed this an "accidental pop song." Thank goodness for good accidents say I.
Every Little Thing is another prime cut from this audio-pleasing collection of tunes, but for reasons very different to Do It Again. Pegged as more of an emotive track, this bittersweet electro ballad, blends synthesizers into a slow rhythmic beat, summing up broken hearts and emotions that are at odds. A top tip with this one is, don't press play if you're in a bad way.
Overall Do It Again gets a four star rating out of five – not because there’s anything wrong with the contents - just because I’d appreciate more of it!
- Max Waverly
Europe’s Famous Hostels - Flying Pig Recommends: Gastama Lille Hostel
If you've never stayed in the French city of Lille before, then you're in for a big surprise! That's because there's a brand new and boutique designer hostel here by the name of Gastama, and it's a qualified, high-class member of the elite - Europe's Famous Hostels.
You'll find this friend of the Pig in a beautiful ancient building, serving up the best bits of classic French architecture along with all the modern luxuries, and conveniences, you'd expect in a brand new backpacker. From the hostel in the centre of Old Lille, you're only a 15-minute stroll from the main train station, and a short walk from some of the best restaurants, and attractions.
Gastama's on-site bar serves up a selection of delicious and famous French wines, which can be supped outdoors in the summer months - on the hostel terraces. Rooms on offer here include a good range of everything from private en-suite doubles to shared dorms, and just like at the Pig, there's also a communal kitchen so you can cook, store, and eat your own food too! Free WiFi, guest computers and super friendly multi-lingual staff - are the cherries on the cake here!
Where To Stay: 109 rue de St Andre, Lille, France 59800
Flying Pig Beach Hostel : News From the Beach Hostel
A short and sweet bus commute from Amsterdam city centre is the Flying Pig Beach hostel in the seaside town of Noordwijk. It’s a backpacker favourite in the Netherlands, located right next to one of the most beautiful stretches of sand in the country. You really can’t beat waking up to the waves and the serenity of beach life! Also this summer, the hostel has a shed load of fun stuff to keep you entertained!
Piggy Pop August 8 to 10, 2014
Coming soon we have Piggy Pop, version IV! That’s right we're back again this year by popular demand - with more live bands, more top tunes and more musical fun than ever.
In 2014, you guys get to enjoy some jamming workshops, fun themed drinks, banging beats and lots of fun surprises too. It’s going to be bigger than ever! With three full days of awesome music, cool people, fun workshops, live music and more, make sure you’re there!
This is Europe’s permanent space expedition. Located on an industrial estate on the edge of Noordwijk, Space Expo doesn't look much from the outside, but it’s much bigger on the inside - packed with super interesting exhibits, and interactive displays.
You can check out some great space memorabilia, including a cutaway space station where you can get an astronaut's view of circling the earth. There are some beautiful images taken from space too, plus displays showing you how you how to align the planets in our solar system, a weightless space walk room, a satellite launch command and a Soyuz rocket flight simulator.