One of the most exciting things about Amsterdam is its diversity. Its history as a trading nation has made it very open-minded, especially in terms of food. To really explore this facet and enjoy the thrill of the bargain find, head for Amsterdam’s markets. My top five are:
1. Waterlooplein. This is the biggest, best known one that everyone heads for. Here you can find anything you want, new or used. Clothing, books, CDs, or food, just to name a few. Have a rummage; be amazed. But also be aware that this is the market all the tourists go to and sometimes the prices might be a little higher for that reason. Open all day Monday to Saturday.
2. Albert Cuypmarkt. Located in the funky, wonderfully diverse De Pijp district, this market fills the center of the long Albert Cuyp street. Here you can get everything from fruit and vegetables to cheeses, clothes, buckets, cameras; you name it. The area’s multicultural population is reflected in the market stalls with great Turkish, Moroccan and Surinamese food. Open all day Monday to Saturday.
3. Lindengracht. In the lovely Jordaan district, this Saturday market fills the center of a surprisingly wide street for Amsterdam – once a canal it was filled in during the 19th century. There are over 200 stalls selling everything including great food, bicycles, fabric and flowers.
4. Noordermarkt. Very close to Lindengracht alongside the Prisengracht canal, this is the Saturday organic food market which is unmissable. Treat yourself afterwards with a huge slice of apple cake; you’ll find the stall when you see the line!
5. Dappermarkt. This is the place for bargains. Located in East Amsterdam, which is a lower-cost area of the city, it is a busy local market recently voted Best Market in the Netherlands. You can get everything here from Turkish bread to African cosmetics.