First Trip to Amsterdam Helpful Guide

I finally visited Europe! The first trip we did was Amsterdam. I low-key always wanted this to be my first place I visited when I went to Europe. Thought I would share a little insight into our trip and help you think about your next trip!

Our flight was from NYC (6PM local time) to Amsterdam (8AM local time) and was about 6 hours long. Basically it was a red-eye flight with no time to sleep. What we should have done was went to sleep as SOON as we got on the flight. What we did instead was watch a movie (3 Billboards- very good), ate the airplane dinner, and then started another movie (Jumanji – actually pretty funny), then finally started to fall asleep (about halfway through the flight).

Luckily, there was no one sitting next to us so we had the whole three seats to ourselves. I’m a terrible sleeper on a plane (I have never slept on a plane before), so I was nervous I wasn’t going to be able to sleep at all. I bought a neck pillow before boarding (still on the fence on how I feel about them) and tried sleeping horizontally across the seats. My boyfriend had no issue sleeping in his chair and was out before I was.

TAKEAWAY TIP: If you’re flying from NYC to Amsterdam, sleep immediately when you get on the plane.

Overall, we got about 2 hours of (barely) sleep on this flight and then landed in a foreign country at 8AM. Since we were not able to check into our airbnb until about 3PM, we stored our luggage at Amsterdam Centraal and wandered the streets. It was very easy to find a storage locker since it was 8AM, but when we went to retrieve our luggage at around 2PM, everything was filled and people were hovering like sharks over our locker.

TAKEAWAY TIP: If you’re going to store your luggage, do so at Amsterdam Centraal station, and do it early or expect a wait.

Officially zombies, we were ready to roam the rainy streets in search of coffee and food. The first place that we saw right outside Amsterdam Centraal was: Pancakes! No – literally, the place is called “Pancakes”. Immediately I wanted everything to do with this place, but got nervous that there wasn’t going to be anything that I was able to eat because pancakes are typically made with milk. Well American pancakes are. This place served Dutch pancakes, as well as American pancakes, and there are vegan options for the dutch pancakes!

OK- we got in line. Yes, there is typically a line… and it’s a chain. But the pancakes were so amazing I was thinking about them the entire trip. I ordered a vegan Dutch ‘make your own’ pancake with apples, bananas, and strawberries; and of course maple syrup on top. It was honestly sooo good. It tasted like an even better apple strudel or some similar pastry, but vegan!

TAKEAWAY TIP: Get Dutch pancakes, immediately. Don’t worry, there are vegan options.

I also ordered a soy milk latte (there’s no almond milk in this chain). Another thing I noticed during this trip was that the almond milk tastes slightly different. I’m not sure if it they make their almond milk differently (maybe also with macadamia nuts, I’ve tried this type of milk before in San Francisco) or if the almond milk is fresher? Either way, I found myself drinking soy milk lattes the entire trip.


We stayed in an airbnb right outside Oosterpark, which was away from all the hustle and bustle. I loooove staying in Airbnbs. I feel like they really make you feel like you live in the city you are visiting. It’s usually more personal and in better locations (away from all the hotels).

Oosterpark is beautiful. Basically large green fields with a pond in the center and a walking path around. Everywhere we went was just around the park, so we would find ourselves walking through or on the outskirts of the park. There were also some cute restaurants nearby (a fave was Mama Dough) plus lots of little pubs.


The Park Cafe is a cute little spot located in Oosterpark, right by where we were staying. The ambiance and setting is the cutest. I got a soy latte and an avocado toasts (obvs). I liked this spot, but Peter wasn’t a big fan.

The Plantage– We had dinner here the first night and it was so nice. We got bottle of wine and the setting was just so romantic. I don’t remember if Peter got us reservations or not, but was probably my favorite dinner in Amsterdam.

We wandered around De 9 Straatjes (The 9 Streets) and stopped at a random cafe on the street. This was the day I was feeling really sick, so we just ate something quick before heading back home. I got an eggplant sandwich thing and it was actually verrryyy good. It came with some side soup that I treated like sauce.

Random cafe on the street

Stek– This was a cute place walking distance from where we were staying. We got breakfast here and I ordered (can you guess?): a soy latte and avocado toast. I am really a simple girl when it comes to breakfast. Just get me a latte and avo toast. I forgot what Peter ordered, but he really enjoyed it.

The Happy Pig– This place was AH-MAZE-ZING. I seriously need this place more in my life and am strongly considering contacting them to tell them they need to open up stores in NYC. This is another pancake spot (my weakness), however their gimmick is that the food is on-the-go, or eat it there. It comes in this easy to carry tray anddddd there are vegan options. Plus, how cute is this name and logo?! Honestly, could go viral.

I also found this bombbbb juice shop that was literally just what the doctor ordered. I got sick halfway through our trip and at this point I needed to just go home and rest. Right before we were about to order the Uber back, I spotted this heaven! I picked up some juices that could help bring me back to life while I rest. They even had a special and I got a FREE turmeric shot.


OK it rains alllllll the time in Amsterdam. So much so that the people really don’t mind it. Seriously. I didn’t see that many umbrellas. The temperature was pretty cold when we visited (~40/50’s in April). I didn’t pack any jackets with the exception of a bomber coat and a crop hoodie (idk whatttt I was thinking) so basically it was freezing for me. However, if you pack the right layers and bring good walking shoes you don’t mind getting wet; you’re good! PLUS- a big perk I loved about Amsterdam is that the lighting is perfect. Since it’s basically overcast every day, the lighting was always amazing.

Our Last Day in Amsterdam

The last day of our trip it was FINALLY sunny and not rainy. I was also FINALLY feeling better. So we walked around De 9 Straatjes (The 9 Streets). This was probably my favorite area and I would like to stay around this area next I visit (there willll be a next time!). There are so many different kind of shops, all within steps from each other. Plus, there are tons of photo opps with those famous bridges.