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Bucket list experience:

Last updated: 10 November, 2022
Expert travel writer: Jennifer Ceaser

Amsterdam holds a massive city-wide street party every year to mark the birthday of King Willem-Alexander.

Orange-clad Dutch people (and visitors) cram the streets, parks and canals, which become clogged with boats. There is free live outdoor music everywhere, and the city becomes one giant flea market, with many an Amsterdammer trying to flog unwanted second-hand things – great for collectors. The preceding evening, King’s Night, is a big night across the city’s bars and clubs.

Wearing orange is de rigueur on King’s Day, even for visitors. Expect the whole city to be garish orange, from clothes and wigs to banners and food. The orange craze is a reference to the Dutch royal family – the House of Orange.

It’s colourful and great fun if you like to party and socialise, but for others it’s crowded, messy and noisy (and many locals flee the city until it’s over). Amsterdam is jam packed, with some 800,000 extra visitors to the city – and be prepared for lots of inebriated Dutchmen.

Price: Free
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 4+
Frequency: annually
When: 26th April
Duration: 1 day

Our writer’s picks of the best places to stay near this experience, closest first

De L’Europe Amsterdam

Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands

Ultra-plush five-star luxury in a landmark hotel. Perfectly located on the southern of the character-filled Canal Ring, walking distance to the big art museums.

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Ambassade Hotel

Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands

Character-filled hotel in historic canal-facing buildings. The quintessential heritage stay, and perfectly located for exploring the city and enjoying up the Canal Ring atmosphere.

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Hotel Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht

Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands

Eclectic interiors, a stellar canal-front setting and the almost perfect location make this design hotel a true standout.

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Canal House

Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands

An intimate hotel in historic canal-facing buildings, with stylishly updated interiors. One of the trendiest places to stay in Amsterdam.

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Destination guides including or relevant to this experience


North Holland, Netherlands

Picturesque Golden Age canals, premier league art, cosy cafés, and liberal urban living combine to make Amsterdam one of Europe’s most vibrant capitals.

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