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Amsterdam bars outside the tourist area

Four Amsterdam Bars Outside the Tourist Area Worth Finding

Most tourists in Amsterdam stay in the city center, known as Amsterdam-Centrum. This is where the famous De Wallen (Red Light District) can be found and is an area lined with bars. But for a more local experience, you should explore bars outside the tourist area.

The collection of museums such as the Anne Frank house, the Rijksmuseum, and the Van Gogh Museum can keep your days filled when visiting the city. But afterwards, Amsterdam has its fair share of bars, pubs, and other watering holes to grab a drink or two. Between 4 and 6 p.m. is known as borreltijd, which translates to happy hour. This time frame is when many Dutch people enjoy a drink and a deep-fried snack with friends or colleagues at a local pub. 

After a long day of sightseeing, these bars are fantastic places to unwind with your favorite drink. While it’s easy to see why so many people flock to Amsterdam, it can also be overwhelming after a while to navigate your way through the city center to visit a museum or catch a tour. 

These are four bars to visit that are outside the city center so they aren’t filled with tourists, but are close enough to go find when visiting Amsterdam.

Where is the Tourist Area of Amsterdam?

Map of Amsterdam showing where the main tourist area of Amsterdam-Centrum is located relative to other areas.

The primary tourist area in Amsterdam is centered around Amsterdam-Centrum, the historical heart of the city. This district encompasses the famous canal belt, the Dam Square with the Royal Palace, the bustling Red Light District, and the Jordaan neighborhood known for its picturesque streets and cozy cafes.

Tourists do visit areas like De Pijp for the Albert Cuyp Market and the Heineken Experience and Amsterdam East with modern bars, cultural venues, and historic sites. But the concentration of Amsterdam’s most famous landmarks and the quintessential Amsterdam experience is found within the city center, making it the focal point for most tourists visiting the Dutch capital.

Bars Worth Leaving the Tourist Area For

Café Gollem

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Café Gollem, is an iconic Belgian beer café in Amsterdam with a few locations around the city. Though, each spot has its own charm. The one located in the De Pijp neighborhood on Raamsteeg is close to the city center, but not so close you will feel overwhelmed by the throngs of tourists. It’s easily accessible, and so this is the one I highly recommend visiting if you are in fact a tourist staying near the city center.

Café Gollem is known as a bruine kroeg, or a brown pub, which refers to a pub with a dark and cozy interior with a wooden bar and dim lighting. It’s a distinctly Dutch phenomenon and is well worth a visit. While it has an extensive selection of Belgian beers, there are also Dutch and international beers on the menu, or the wines and gin and tonics are worthy alternatives. The food is generlaly limited to bread, cheese, and some small snacks.

Even though it’s not in a tourist zone, it’s just close enough to where you can easily access tram and bus lines to take you further into your exploration of Amsterdam.


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Hendrix in Amsterdam is a vibrant spot known for its soulful ambiance and delightful menu that pays homage to Jimi Hendrix. Located in west Amsterdam, it is just a quick ride from the city center via tram 13.

Rather than just a bar and restaurant, Hendrix aims to be a living room hangout that features live music and a relaxed vibe. Plus, it boasts a sunny patio along the canal, making it an ideal spot to enjoy any meal.

There is an extensive drinks menu with beer, wine, and cocktails, so there is something for everyone.


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Westergasterras (in English “Westergas Terrace”) is a seasonal terrace that is part of a converted gas factory in a park. This area has now become a cultural hub with cafes and restaurants, as well as venue for outdoor festivals. It is an escape from Amsterdam’s urban rush, especially since this park attracts fewer tourists than nearby Vondelpark.

You can find inside and outside seating, so depending on the weather you can pick the perfect spot to hang out and enjoy your favorite drink. The menu includes a variety of Asian-inspired dishes with vegetarian and vegan options, so you can find something for everyone. The dinner items are meant to be shared.


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Waterkant is a restaurant and bar that brings the food and hospitality of Suriname to Amsterdam.

Waterkant is a vibrant and tropical hotspot that is inspired by De Waterkant, a street in the capital city of Suriname known for its culture of hospitality, snacks, and drinks. This spot brings the warm atmosphere and multicultural vibe of Surinam hospitality to the heart of Amsterdam. 

Opened in 2014, Waterkant brings a laid-back ambiance, especially on sunny days as a perfect spot for relaxation and socializing by the water. But it transforms into a lively scene with club nights every Friday and Saturday late into the night, promising good music and a festive atmosphere.

It’s also a place where you can try foods from Surinam, Indonesia, or the Netherlands. So come indulge in an Indonesian Gado Gado, a Dutch bitterballen, or simply grab a burger and a Surinamese Parbo beer.