Oud-West, Amsterdam Hidden Gem Neighbourhood

August 19, 2019

Often when people visit Amsterdam they stick to the city centre, enjoying the canals and coffee shops that make the city famous. While that is wonderful, if you venture further out you can find less touristy areas with authentic neighbourhoods and local events.

Oud West Amsterdam is a triangular area located just west of the centre of the city and is a great location to escape the hustle and bustle. With Vondelpark to the south and Rembrandtpark to the west, it’s surrounded with greenery and provides an oasis from the fast pace of the city centre.

The residential area is always alive with action – whether it’s a craft market or a beer festival, cultural celebrations or alfresco dining. You will also find a selection of food options including Ethiopian, Japanese and Moroccan food which reflects the diversity of the area, home to over 170 nationalities. Some of Amsterdam’s best restaurants are located here too.

If you fancy a more laid-back lunch, a visit to De Hallen is a must. Located in a former tram depot, De Hallen houses a huge food hall, an independent cinema, a library and a boutique hotel.  The Food Hallen serves a range of multi-cultural street food from empanadas to bitterballen.

Once you’ve filled up on food why not visit Film Hallen, the biggest independent cinema in the Netherlands which screens a range of genres, from Hollywood blockbusters to indie films. For cinephiles there’s also Lab 111 Film Complex, a quirky cult cinema housed in an old anatomical laboratory which regularly screens films and holds exhibitions.

The monthly Makers Market is also worth visiting, on the Hannie Dankbaar Passage, where you’ll find some of the best locally crafted goods.

Another market, which takes place from Monday to Saturday is the Ten Katemarkt Market, where over 100 stands sell fresh produce, flowers, fish, fabric and more! You’ll find plenty of street food options here including classic Dutch gouda cheese, so if you fancy a foodie tour of Oud West Amsterdam, you should definitely stop by.

For a spot of shopping, De Clercqstraat and Kinksterstraat are lined with commercial shops, cafes and restaurants and the smaller Bellamystraat gives the area an authentic village atmosphere.

If you’re after a gentle stroll, Helmersbuurt is a quiet neighbourhood filled with tree-lined streets and cultural hotspots. Once the home of many artists and writers, head here to soak in the creativity and pen your own poem in a street-side café.

For a caffeinated pick-me-up, the area has a good selection of coffee bars including the Coffee Room, Koffie Academie and Lot Sixty One which has it’s own onsite roastery.

For more local nightlife, Oud West Amsterdam has a great selection of bars, cafes and cocktail lounges.  Craft & Draft on Overtoom stocks over 100 beers from around the world and Scrapyard on Kinksterstraat serves creative cocktails in a cavernous environment. The kitchen at Café Panache stays open until midnight all week and all of these places are friendly, communal and down-to-earth.

For a destination a little different to the stereotypical canals, clogs and cheese, Oud West Amsterdam delivers.
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Image credit to – Franklin Heijnen (https://www.flickr.com/photos/franklinheijnen/

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