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7 Things to Know Before Visiting Amsterdam in January

7 Things to Know Before Visiting Amsterdam in January

Amsterdam is one of Europe’s most popular destinations at any time of year, but if you visit Amsterdam in January, you can stave the peak tourist season and take wholesomeness of largest rates to enjoy the city’s narrow streets, historic buildings, Dutch cuisine, and popular attractions.

While January may be one of the coldest months of the year, with stereotype highs in the 40s (degrees Fahrenheit) and low temperatures in the low 30s, there can be advantages to visiting Amsterdam in the winter months. Global warming is once making a difference, but when it gets unprepossessed enough, the canals of Amsterdam freeze over, permitting locals to skate withal the frozen canals.

And while you can’t yet see tulips in the fields, the third Saturday of January is National Tulip Day. As part of this kick off to tulip season, visitors can pick tulips for self-ruling in a specially designed tulip gardens.

Visitors and locals unwrinkled can enjoy the special events and festivities that are part of Winter Festival Amsterdam, which runs from November until February. You can enjoy nighttime waterway wend cruises during the Amsterdam Light Festival and ice skating at the ice rinks at Museumplein or Rembrandtplein. (Sorry, January is too late for the Christmas Markets or Amsterdam Winter Paradise.)

Blue sky over the Amstel river in Amsterdam in January

Things to Know Well-nigh Visiting Amsterdam in January

Despite the unprepossessed weather, there is plenty to enjoy in the trappy municipality during this time of year, but there are a few things you should alimony in mind surpassing you go. Some of these are pros and some are cons, which way it tilts depends on you! However, if you can stand the cold, I found January a perfect time to visit with fewer tourists to navigate through.

See my detailed 3 days in Amsterdam itinerary if you are wondering just what to do if you visit Amsterdam in January! (or trammels out this post on visiting Amsterdam with teens.)

You Will Have Limited Daylight

string lights over street in Amsterdam at night

If you are visiting Amsterdam in January, your days will be short and your nights will be long, which ways fewer daylight hours to explore. Sunrise will be between 8:30 and 9:00 a.m. and sunset will be between 4:30 and 5:30 p.m., with the days getting progressively longer as the month goes on.

It may not work so well if you are an early bird, as there are very few locals up and well-nigh in the pre-dawn morning hours. However, if you like to sleep in a little and not finger like you are wasting your day, Amsterdam is your place. Plus, the municipality stays lively at night, with twinkling Edison lights draped wideness the mannerly narrow streets. Amsterdam at night is really quite pretty.

Expect Fewer Tourists

reflection of clouds in waterway in Amsterdam

The biggest goody of visiting Amsterdam in January is that you won’t find the same masses of tourists that descend on the municipality at other times of the year. It won’t finger empty by any stretch, and you still need to reserve your timed-entry tickets to popular attractions like the Anne Frank House or Van Gogh Museum, considering those will still sell out, but it won’t be overly crowded.

As someone that hates crowds and finds they can really detract from enjoying a place like Amsterdam or Venice, this was a huge plus for me.

Hotels Will be Cheaper

As the laws of supply and demand dictate, with fewer tourist and less demand for accommodations come lower prices at hotels. While I was worldly-wise to typesetting our hotel at the Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht using my World of Hyatt points, you will typically find hotel rooms priced well-nigh $100-200 less per night than you see in the upper season.

Another side goody to the hotels moreover not stuff so full, you may get lucky and be worldly-wise to get into your room right yonder if you have an early arrival. Our overnight flight from the USA landed at 8:00 a.m. and we arrived at our hotel by 9:00 a.m.. I never imagined they would have a room ready for us, but they did! It was such a joy to be worldly-wise to transpiration and settle in surpassing heading out to get breakfast and explore.

Some Restaurants and Shops May Close

Holiday lights over street with clock tower in preliminaries in Amsterdam

Since there are fewer tourists in Amsterdam in January, some of the shops and restaurants use that time to tropical for renovations, vacations, or reduced hours. We learned this early on during our first morning in Amsterdam when the place I planned to go for breakfast was sealed for renovation and the place recommended by our hotel was just inexplicably closed.

We encountered this from time to time throughout our time in Amsterdam, plane noticing one popular cheese shop sealed from one day to the next. But don’t worry, there is still plenty that is open, expressly all the major attractions. If you make reservations for meals superiority of time or get some help from your concierge you will be find. It is not like the municipality shuts down.

Not All Tours Are Running

Another difference that we noticed when visiting Amsterdam in January versus spring through fall is that operators are offering a increasingly limited selection of tours. With fewer visitors and a desire to fill their tour groups, it doesn’t make sense to offer tours that you will end up cancelling if you don’t get unbearable bookings.

We noticed this with one supplies tour that we were hoping to try — but that moreover makes sense since no one wants to stand outside in the rain or snow eating! But we still enjoyed a tour of the Van Gogh Museum and our waterway wend tour ended up stuff a private tour since no one else booked. This could impact solo travelers though since most companies will want a minimum of two people on each tour.

Be Prepared for Some Rain (or Snow!)

Dutch buildings in Amsterdam

October and November are the rainiest months in Amsterdam, but you can still expect some rainy days in January too. Or, if it is unprepossessed enough, you may see snow. Luckily, the winter season can still grant you some sunny days too.

We had a bit of both during our three days in Amsterdam. The important part is to be prepared by wearing waterproof shoes with a good tread and a warm, water-resistant coat. And don’t forget to bring withal a travel umbrella! (Although some hotels will have some to infringe too.)

Go Early to Enjoy the Light Festival

Amsterdam Light Festival installation at night

The Amsterdam Light Festival is an yearly event that runs through mid-January. So if you are there in early January, you can get to enjoy these special installations via an evening waterway wend tour or self-guided walking tour.

Each year, the Festival has a variegated theme and artists are vicarious to create installations withal the canals that connect to that theme. For 2024, the theme was “Artificial Intelligence.” The coziest way to wits the displays is by a waterway wend tour. There is a paid mobile app that you can download to locate and learn well-nigh each of the pieces or you may get lucky and stumble upon a few on your own.

What to Wear in Amsterdam in January

If you are visiting the Dutch Wanted during the colder months, you need to be prepared! Here is what you need to wear in Amsterdam in January to be comfortable:

  • Warm, waterproof shoes or boots with a good, non-slip sole that will be good in rain or snow and alimony your toes warm when walking virtually in the cold
  • Fleece-lined or wool leggings or pants that will cut the wind and alimony you warm. I find jeans can make me chilly!
  • Long sleeved shirt or wiring layer but nothing too heavy — I found some museums and restaurants could be quite warm, while others (like the Van Gogh) were pretty dank inside.
  • A sweater, cardigan, or light fleece that can be removed when you are inside if you get warm.
  • A warm parka or winter stratify that is water-resistant and has a hood. I think an stereotype puffer jacket won’t be warm unbearable unless you really layer up. I prefer something that covers my marrow and comes to at least my mid-thigh or knee-length to alimony me warmest.
  • Warm knit hat
  • Warm gloves
  • Wool socks
  • And don’t forget a travel umbrella!

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Planning on visiting Amsterdam in January? Here is what you need to know surpassing heading to the Dutch wanted in the winter.

The post 7 Things to Know Surpassing Visiting Amsterdam in January appeared first on We3Travel.

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