City beaches in Amsterdam
You might be surprised to hear it, but Amsterdam actually does have beaches. Strand Zuid, Strand West and Strand IJburg are located around the periphery of Amsterdam, and all have beach restaurants, water and sand. If you feel like going to the beach on a summer’s day in Amsterdam, yet don’t want to get on a train to Scheveningen, Zandvoort or Bloemendaal, the following beaches offer an alternative.
Strand Zuid in Amsterdam is located between the Amsterdam RAI exhibition center and the Beatrixpark (Europaplein 22), and boasts over 2000 m2 (over 6,600 square feet) of man-made beach property. Strand Zuid has the image of being a more luxury beach, and in the summer, the upper class of Amsterdam love to come here to lounge, sip cocktails, and see and be seen. But don’t let this trendy image of Strand Zuid scare you off. The beach offers countless hammocks and lounge chairs and even a volleyball court. Although there are no swimming facilities, there are showers available if you need to cool off. There are also even a variety of activities geared towards kids.
Strand West is the Amsterdam beach that is particularly popular among students and young people. With over 20,000 square meters (over 66,000 square feet) of beach, and a panoramic view out over the water of the IJ, this location offers a fantastic, relaxed atmosphere. Feel free to lounge around in one of the many hammocks or bean bag chairs, play a game of beach volleyball, or enjoy tapas and cocktails at the bar. A DJ provides music so you can dance while watching the sun go down. Strand West (Stavangerweg 900) is not even a 15-minute bus ride (Bus 22 and 48) from Central Station. You could always rent a bike so that you don’t have to cut your evening short to catch the last bus.
Strand IJburg is the “alternative” beach in Amsterdam, where there’s always a bit of a hippie vibe, and where young families feel particularly at home. The Blijburg beach restaurant serves food and drinks, and also plays music. In the evening, they often build a campfire. Near Strand IJburg, you’ll find Surfcenter IJburg where water sports enthusiasts can rent windsurfing equipment, or take classes. One of the great advantages of Strand IJburg is that unlike Strand Zuid and Strand West, you can swim here. You can take tram line 26 to get to Strand IJburg (Muiderlaan 1001).