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Paris, the city of Love? Amsterdam, the city of Red Lights?

Open any guidebook or travel blog and you will often find Paris mentioned as the city of love, the most romantic city in the world and the place to go if you want to impress that special person in your life. Whilst I don’t deny that, I ask that rather than going straight for that little break to Paris to climb the Eiffel Tower and eat your weight in baguettes et fromage, you give Amsterdam a try. I believe that you will be pleasantly surprised.

Amsterdam has always had a bit of a bad reputation, especially when compared to romantic heavyweights such as Paris, Rome and Venice. However, in recent years, the city has been cleaned up and revamped in to a place that everyone should visit with their loved one.

When someone says Amsterdam, you automatically think of the famous Red Light District, or RLD as it's also known. You may also think of Tulips and Anne Frank but that’s not likely to make you question whether you should go.

In my opinion, the RLD is a vibrant, fun and cultured area. It's also, surprisingly romantic. There is nothing better than walking hand in hand along the cobbled paths and across the famous bridges with the moon lighting up the river and the red glow lighting up the streets. It is like your own personal moulin rouge, which funnily enough, Paris is famous for, but has tried to step away from in a bid to become more romantic than red light.

My top 5 most romantic things to try in Amsterdam are:

  1. Get the most amazing views at The SkyLounge. A super chic cocktail bar resident in the Doubletree Hilton. If you can, get there just before sunset.
  2. Dine in ‘Heaven’ in Amsterdam. Ciel Bleu Restaurant on the 23rd floor of the Okura Hotel offers a world class dining experience. It is the only Restaurant in Amsterdam to have two Michelin stars.
  3. Take a private canal cruise. Whilst it is not cheap, you can avoid the crowds and enjoy a private dinner or just sip champagne as you float along Amsterdam’s waters.
  4. On a sunny day, take a picnic down to Vondelpark and relax for the afternoon. Eating the best that Amsterdam bakeries can offer and enjoying the 19th century park which even features an open air theatre with a full programme offered throughout May – September.
  5. Leave a token of your trip on a love lock bridge. Amsterdam now has 2 bridges where you can leave a padlock locked on to symbolise your love and devotion to your other half. Many people personalise their padlocks by getting them engraved before they travel, or by simply writing their initials joined by a heart.

Date Created: 06/11/2017

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