A village in the heart of the city
Stretching for around 1km along the northern edge of the Jordaan, Haarlemmerstraat and the adjoining Haarlemmerdijk cut through one of Amsterdam’s best-loved neighbourhoods: the Haarlemmerbuurt. Independent restaurants, cafés and trendy bars jostle for space with some 235 specialist stores all the way to the Haarlemmerplein in the west, where a farmers’ market sets up every Wednesday.
The best shopping street in Amsterdam
A world away from the high street familiarity of Amsterdam’s city centre shopping areas, the bustling Haarlemmerstraat, which gives way to the less touristy Haarlemmerdijk, exudes an independent, alternative character. Packed as it is with fashion boutiques, speciality delicatessens, trendy florists, book and record shops, art supplies stores, vintage clothes emporiums and quirky hair salons, it’s little wonder that the Haarlemmerstraat has been rated the best shopping street in the whole of Holland.
Eating, drinking and entertainment
All of that retail browsing is thirsty work, so don’t forget to stop and refuel with a coffee at one of the area’s charming cafés, such as Vinnies, Two For Joy Coffee Roasters or Toki, a little hidden gem tucked down a pretty side street. There’s also plenty of choices when it comes to evening entertainment, with a variety of quality restaurants and atmospheric cocktail bars like Stout, Het Warenhuis or Vesper Bar. Film fans definitely shouldn’t miss charming cinema The Movies on Haarlemmerdijk, the oldest functioning movie theatre in Amsterdam, which also houses its own delightfully cosy restaurant.
In the neighbourhood
A 10-minute walk through the Jordaan, south of Haarlemmerstraat, will bring you to the 9 Straatjes, where you can continue shopping in another of Amsterdam’s most attractive retail districts. Alternatively, keep heading west across Haarlemmerplein to the grassy Westerpark, home to the impressive Westergasfabriek cultural complex and a host of quality bars, restaurants and entertainment venues.
Look out for the many surviving Art Nouveau facades in the neighbourhood, such as Haarlemmerdijk 39, designed by well-known architect Francois Marie Joseph Caron. Formerly a fish shop but now a trendy accessories store, Haarlemmerdijk 39 still bears its original decorative tiles featuring illustrations of sea creatures, plus sinuous window frames and a whimsical turret. Other beautiful Caron designs can be seen at Haarlemmerdijk 43 and Haarlemmerstraat 51.