Which are the best programs for tourists in Amsterdam in May?

So you are planning a trip to Amsterdam in May? Which are the coolest and best activities for tourists coming to visit the city in the last month of spring? There are lots of places worth visiting, and you should be prepared for frequent occasional showers, so you better put both indoor and outdoor activities on your list. Here we will give you a few recommendations for awesome activities in Amsterdam in May.

Once again, Amsterdam has very unstable weather, and there are almost never a week passing by without rain showers a couple of times. But, the best advice is still to look at the weather forecast before you come to get an estimate about what kind of weather you can expect. And even though it is raining quite a lot, it is still fantastic to know that when it isn’t raining in May, Amsterdam is a city with temperatures between 15 and 25 Celsius, making it fantastic for those who want to be outdoor and explore the city.

Now that you have some basic information, let us give you some recommendations for great programs in Amsterdam in May!

Fantastic May activities in and around Amsterdam.

Learn more about Dutch culture at Zaanse Schans.

It is strange to think about it, but a large part of the Netherlands is below the sea-level. As a result, the country is built on piles. An important part in protecting the country against the water was building dams (thereof Amster-dam), and then to use wind-mills, or water-mills, to protect the land and to send the water back to where it came from so that the soil could be used for agriculture or building houses. If you travel to Zaanse Schans which is just outside Amsterdam you can see mills and walk around inside of them, you can see how they make the typical Dutch clogs, and you can even visit a cheese-farm. In other words, a perfect place to visit for tourists who want to learn more about the Dutch culture.

Explore the city on a bicycle (only if you have experience)!

For someone visiting Amsterdam and the Netherlands for the first time it feels extreme to see thousands of bikes parked next to one another next to the big railway stations and elsewhere in the bigger cities. The Dutch people love their bikes, and as a result, it is a biker-friendly country. That is why you will find lots of places where you can rent a bike in the city of Amsterdam, which means that you can later explore the city on your own. There are few activities nicer than a bicycle trip around the canals and through the parks of Amsterdam on a nice day in May.

But, you should also be warned… the people of Amsterdam, the tram-drivers, and the cars, are used to the fact that Dutch people know how to behave in traffic with bicycles. If you come with no experience and little practice, it can actually be dangerous to travel around Amsterdam on a bicycle, because you are way more likely to make a mistake than the experienced locals. In other words, be careful, practice a little bit before you arrive to Amsterdam, and maybe join a guided tour on bicycle in Amsterdam as the local guide will help you get a good start and get used to the traffic before you go out to explore the city on your own.

Which museums do you want to visit?

It is raining, the wind is blowing, and you are looking for an indoor program. Which museum should you visit? Amsterdam has more museums per inhabitant than any other city in Europe, so you have a lot to choose from, but which is the right place to go for you and those you are traveling with?

Do you travel with kids who want to experience and see something fun? “Ripley’s Believe It or Not” is a museum in which you can see very strange objects, some real, others totally made up. What you see will amuse you and make you stand in awe and maybe even laugh. A great place to go for families on a rainy day in May in Amsterdam.

What if you want to educate yourself on the topic of the history of Amsterdam? You have already studied and learnt about the wind-mills of the Netherlands, now it is time for some more general history. You should visit the “Amsterdam Museum“. Here you can learn about how the city evolved into the capital of the fantastic country, and also about the history of the Dutch colonies.

Would you like to learn more about the sex industry in Amsterdam? How did it all start? Why did it become legal to work as a prostitute in Amsterdam? What is life like as a prostitute in Amsterdam? You can learn much more about these and other topics in the “Sexmuseum Amsterdam” and also in the “Red Light Secrets: Museum of Prostitution.

Most people who come to Amsterdam comes with the Van Gogh Museum or the Anne Frank House in mind. Those are great places to go, but do not forget to buy your tickets in advance, because it is almost impossible to buy tickets directly, especially for the Anne Frank House.

Keukenhof is a must!

Have you read our article about what you should do in Amsterdam in April? One of the most important places to go in April is to Keukenhof, the beautiful garden with millions of flowers blooming at that time of the year. We have some more good news for you! Keukenhof is normally open in the first weeks of May as well, so if you come in the start of May, find out if Keukenhof is open and if it is, buy your tickets and join a trip to the park as soon as possible.

Keukenhof is only open for approximately 2 months in total per year, so your chances of visiting the place is limited. As a result, you should definitely visit Keukenhof if you are lucky enough to visit Amsterdam and the Netherlands during the time of the year in which it is possible to visit this area.

keukenhof day-trip from Amsterdam

If you decide to rent a car, then the travel time from Amsterdam to Keukenhof by car is about 45 minutes.

Check out our calendar to find out about concerts, exhibitions, or other temporary programs in Amsterdam!

There are lots of concerts in Amsterdam all year around. It is hard to feature those in an article with general information and advice about what to do in Amsterdam in May. So, instead of trying to write about those here, we’d rather recommend that you look at our article about “what’s happening in Amsterdam” to find out more about upcoming temporary programs such as concerts, running competitions, exhibitions, sports events, and other things going on.

These are some thoughts and ideas for awesome programs in Amsterdam in May. But, do not forget that we could have written about lots of other programs as well. No matter when you come to Amsterdam, it is recommended to buy tickets for a canal cruise of some sort. Maybe you should go on a normal sightseeing trip, or you can buy tickets for a cheese and wine tasting trip on the canals of Amsterdam, or maybe a pizza trip?

The fantastic museums of Amsterdam are worth visiting all year around, and the most famous of them all is Rijksmuseum. Here you have the biggest collection of Dutch painters, but also lots of international artists featured. If you want a smaller museums, then the Rembrandt House is a gem you will be happy to take a closer look at.

All in all, Amsterdam is a fantastic city and you have a lot to look forward to.

If you have further comments, questions, or ideas, write them in the comment field below!

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