If you’ve been thinking about visiting Amsterdam for a while now, then 2014 is your moment. Why? Because there is so much going on again this year. I know, last year was pretty good with all of the milestone celebrations, but I think this year will be just as good. Here are my top 5 reasons to visit Amsterdam in 2014
This year will be the first ever King’s day. Last year the Queen abdicated in favour of her son Willem Alexander. For the first time since Queen’s Day was invented in 1885, a King has come into the throne. Instead of celebrating they day on the 30th April (as many Dutch people have since 1949), to reflect the King’s birthday King’s day will be celebrated on the 26th. His actual birthday is on the 27th April but tradition means that it cannot be held on a Sunday. Everyone dresses in orange, there are markets, and everyone goes out and has a great time.
The Rijksmuseum celebrates one year of being fully re-opened to the public. After fully re-opening in April 2013, the Rijksmuseum will have been open for a full year, This might mean there are less queues (you can only hope – nobody wants to spend more than 15 minutes in a queue). If not check out my guide on how to avoid the queues. They haven’t announced any special plans as of yet, but I’ll keep you posted.
This year will be the 10th birthday of Amsterdam Fashion week. While the Dutch are not particularly known across the world for their style, they are in fact quite the fashionistas during fashion week. There are two every year, and while as a member of the public, you won’t be able to get into the fashion industry shows, they still have a lot going on around the city. I remember in 2013 they had models on ice. I did feel a bit sorry for the models – they were modelling spring/summer clothing in a -30 wind chill outside on an ice rink. They have a lot of freebies that you can get – for example, free hair and makeup done in a shop window. I had the best make-up and most amazing hair. I looked like an escaped model (except for my size) so when I went to Albert Heijn I got funny (read jealous) looks. They have the first fashion week on the 19th January.
The Felix meritis observatory re-opens in April to the public. To me, this is one of the best views over Amsterdam, and it’s worth going to just for that. They haven’t said exactly when, or if they will be doing anything special to mark it, but it is fantastic – just make sure you go on a sunny day.
The Keukenhof theme this year is Holland. I love the Keukenhof and I think tulips are one of my favourite flowers. It is the world’s biggest flower garden, and you could spend hours just wandering around. Each year they have a flower parade (in 2014 the theme is Energy), which incredible. In 2014 they have a mosaic with the theme ‘Amsterdam Canals’ to symbolise the golden age when the price of tulip bulbs could sometimes be as much as a house! It’s completely family friendly – if you want to save some money then buy a combi-ticket which includes public transport and entry.
So, will you visit Amsterdam in 2014? What are you reasons?