Amsterdam, the City of Freedom

Of all of the cities in Europe, Amsterdam has to be the most unique, offering a culture and atmosphere that is totally different from that of most other major metropolises.

And although its grandeur and infrastructure can compete with many other capitals, Amsterdam has a personality and style all of its own and isn’t afraid to go its own way.

The exact quality that makes the city so unique is hard to quantify, however it definitely has something to do with the freedom and relaxed atmosphere enjoyed by its residents. So if you want to see what the Dutch capital really has to offer, you’ll just have to go and see for yourself.

History

Although the history of Amsterdam is short by European standards – it started as a fishing village back in the 13th century – it’s more than made up for by the shear wealth of architectural and cultural history that’s on display for all to see.

Amsterdam can rival any city when it comes to beauty

The role that Amsterdam played as a centre of trade for Western Europe and beyond brought people here form all over the world.

This led to a diverse and liberal society that values artistic ability just as much as economic acumen and today boasts some of the most progressive and forward thinking laws and policies in the world.

The city has a long history of independent thought and it was here that John Lennon and Yoko Ono staged their famous ‘bed-in’ in protest at the Vietnam War.

Marijuana

Ask most people what they think of when they hear the name Amsterdam and many will say the cannabis friendly coffee shops that dot the city.

And though cannabis is legal in the city, its use is carefully controlled and monitored with customers only able to smoke in specially licensed premises.

In fact, new laws currently being discussed by the Dutch government could soon lead to a tightening up of the cannabis laws, leading to residents from outside of Holland barred from the famous coffee shops.

Red light district

Amsterdam’s red light district is famous throughout the world for its nightlife and for window displays that leave little to the imagination.

The fact that prostitution is legal in The Netherlands has led to better health care and better protection for the people working in the industry, with many regulations in place to safeguard their wellbeing.

Whether you visit the red light district or not during your city break is of course up to you, although some may say that it’s an important aspect of the city’s personality.

Art

Art in Holland and Amsterdam has always flourished and thrived and many of the world’s greatest painters hail from this tiny nation.

The freedom of the city definitely encouraged at atmosphere of creativity and led to a society where artistic expression and experimentation was very much welcomed and seen as part of the culture of the city.

This attitude continues to this day, and many creative people still flock to Amsterdam to soak up its inspiring atmosphere.

Many people have flocked to Amsterdam over the years to take advantage of its creative atmosphere

Many people have flocked to Amsterdam over the years to take advantage of its creative atmosphere

Culture

The culture of freedom that is found in Amsterdam is almost a self-fulfilling prophecy, as the more people who visit the city to take advantage of the relaxed atmosphere; the less likely it is that the status quo will change.

When in Amsterdam it’s a good idea to have a car to see the various sites/attractions. If you don’t feel like driving and like a little luxury, some of the lowest chauffeur car hire Amsterdam deals can be found here.

For many years, Dutch people have prided themselves on being progressive and forward thinking and this has long been and important part of culture in the Netherlands.

And though some people may find the results of this freedom less than tasteful, others revel in the fact that Amsterdam is like nowhere else on earth.

Picture credits: Wikipedia 1 & 2

This article has been sponsored by le-tour-amsterdam.com