iAmsterdam
A passionate traveller and curator of hidden hotspots and amazing experiences via her blog Amsterdam Wonderland, Tracy was whisked to Amsterdam in 2008 on a surprise trip by her new boyfriend Mr A. After taking her on a magical mystery tour of all his special places, she fell in love with both him and his home town. Nine years later, now Mrs A and mum to 6 and 7 year old mini-Dutchies Oscar and Zac, she's rediscovering the city’s wonders through their eyes and is on a mission to show the world that Amsterdam is in fact one of the most child-friendly places on earth.
March 22, 2017

50 things to do in Amsterdam before you’re 11 ¾

A passionate traveller and curator of hidden hotspots and amazing experiences via her blog Amsterdam Wonderland, Tracy was whisked to Amsterdam in 2008 on a surprise trip by her new boyfriend Mr A. After taking her on a magical mystery tour of all his special places, she fell in love with both him and his home town. Nine years later, now Mrs A and mum to 6 and 7 year old mini-Dutchies Oscar and Zac, she's rediscovering the city’s wonders through their eyes and is on a mission to show the world that Amsterdam is in fact one of the most child-friendly places on earth.

A little while back, the UK’s ‘National Trust’ launched a brilliant initiative to inspire children to spend more time outdoors.  Called ’50 Things to do before you’re 11 ¾’, it’s packed full of fantastic inspiration to get kids outside and active.

But it got me thinking…what are the 50 things every child should get out and do in Amsterdam before their 12th birthday?

Here’s my first pass.  Let me know what you think I’ve missed!

Museums

Image: National Maritime Museum (Scheepvaartmuseum)

1. Put on a lab coat and complete an experiment at Nemo

2. Solve the interactive Family Quest at the Rijksmuseum

3. Shoot a cannon from the East India Ship at the Scheepvaartmuseum

4. Fill a medal with stickers for completing Prince Louis’ challenge at The Royal Palace

5. Complete the clues in Vincent’s Travelling Case at the Van Gogh Museum

6. Make mosaic tiles in a Moroccan Riad at ZieZo Marokko in the Junior Tropenmuseum

7. Bake a challah at the Jewish Historical Museum

8. Read the Diary of Anne Frank and then tour the Anne Frank House

9. Explore the invisible world around us at Micropia

Outdoors

Fun Forest Amsterdam

Image: Fun Forest Amsterdam

10. Swing from the trees at the Fun Forest climbing park

11. Watch the lions being fed at Artis

12. Balance on a raft at the Vijver in the Amsterdamse Bos

13. Make it over the finish line in the Olympic Stadium at the Amsterdam Marathon Kids Run

14. Meet some new-born lambs at a kinderboederij

15. Pick apples and berries at Fruittuin van West

16. Sledge down the roof of the Albert Heijn at Museumplein

17. Ride through secret gardens on board the train in the Amstel Park

18. Bottle feed a goat at the Geitenboerderij Ridammerhoeve

19. Skip across the stepping stones at the Grote Zwembad in the Amsterdamse Bos

20. Build a den in the Wood Cabin Village at Jeugdland

21. Run through the water feature on the roof at Nemo

22. Make sandcastles at an urban beach

23. See a play at the Open Air Theatre in the Vondelpark

Transport

24. Sit in the bucket of a ‘bakfiets’

25. Take a ride on the vintage tram departing from the tramway museum

26. Cycle along the Amstel all the way to Ouderkerk

27. Take the ferry over to Noord

28. Travel from one end of a tramline to another

29. Become a certified Freshwater Pirate on the Blue Boat Canal Tour

30. Captain the plane on the Schipol Panorama Terrace

Play at being a tourist

I amsterdam letters

31. Have your picture taken at every letter of the I amsterdam sign

32. Go skating in winter in front of the Rijksmuseum

33. Take in the views from the top of the A’DAM Toren

34. Dance along to a traditional Amsterdam barrel organ known as a ‘draaiorgel’

35. Visit each of the 11 neighbourhoods on the I amsterdam neighbourhood guide

36. Run through the water feature at the Museumplein

Events

King's Day Vondelpark Vrijmarkt

Image: Guus Schoonewille

37. Sell your wares in the Vondelpark on King’s Day

38. Learn to juggle, unicycle or brave the trapeze by brushing up on your circus skills with Circus Elleboog

39. Go for a spin on the solar merry-go-round at Pure Markt

40. See the Amsterdam Light Festival at night from a boat

41. Welcome Sinterklaas as he arrives from Spain and join in the fun at the Intocht

42. Take part in a workshop at the Junior Grachtenfestival

43. Make a movie, join an open mic singing contest or perfect your hip hop dance skills at the Junior Uitmarkt

44. Watch Ajax win a home game in the Amsterdam ArenA

Food

Pannenkoekenboot Amsterdam

Photo: Pancake Boat Amsterdam

45. Make a meal for your family at the Kinderkookcafe

46. Have hagelslaag for breakfast

47. Scoff DIY pancakes after playing in the ball pool on the pancake boat

48. Try 10 types of ‘drop’ at Jamin

49. Eat warm, freshly made stroopwafels, poffertjes and oliebollen from a food truck

50. Enjoy a Hollandse Nieuwe Haring in Springtime

Tracy Kinderkookcafe Amsterdam

So that’s it!  Has anyone done all 50?  My 6 and 7 year-olds are only about half-way there.

What are the must-dos I’ve forgotten about?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Looking for more inspiration?  Be sure to check our blog which has lots more detail on some of these ideas as well as a host of others.