When summer arrives in Amsterdam and you’re tired of wandering along the canals and strolling in and around Amsterdam museums, it’s best to find a nice terrace to hangout for a couple of hours, to spend the afternoon on a terrace in the sunshine, chilling, drinking. A friendly and sunny place, just enjoy summertime in Amsterdam.
Listed below are bars and restaurants that are great summertime hangouts, but are generally not well known among tourists. And tourist guides don’t mention them. Some places have live music to accompany that glass of chilled white wine, others teach you a few yoga poses in between while others entertain you with theatre or just serve you a plate of beautiful biological food. Enjoy the list of best terraces of Amsterdam and get ready for the summer.
7 Great hangouts for summer in Amsterdam
1. Pllek at NDSM
Every year, more restaurants, bars, terraces and festivals are added to the large space of the former NDSM shipyard. In 2013 newcomer Pllek was an immediate success. Young and hip Amsterdam felt right at home at this strangely warming sea containers. The location of Pllek couldn’t be more perfect. The NDSM terrain has that fashionable industrial feel and is just a (free) 10-minute boat ride away. You can spend hours at Pllek, soaking up the sun from a relaxing chair at the water side terrace, enjoying the wonderful view on the IJ water, occasionally glancing over the creative crowd.
There’s free wifi and even working spaces for the flexible freelancers. Every week Pllek tries to attract and entertain their crowd with events such as yoga classes, tai chi, live music on Sunday afternoon and art exhibitions. Friday night a DJ hits the decks during the Dine&Dance nights.
Pllek‘s kitchen is open from 12 to 21.00. Bar is open till 1 am on weekdays.
Menu and prices:
biological and seasonal. Lunch: B.L.T: €6,50. Dinner: White asparagus with poached egg, lamb’s lettuce, salicornia, boiled potatoes and butter sauce: €16,50
Crowd: young and creative
When to go: all day and Friday night if you fancy a dance
To combine with: Check NDSM calender for events in the area.
How to get there: take the ferry (10 minutes) from behind Central Station
2. Buurtboerderij Ons Genoegen
De Buurtboerderij Ons Genoegen is an old farm that lies behind the railroad tracks behind Westerpark. (Continue on the same road from the Westerpark petting farm.)
It’s a great and very cheap place to hang out. A lot of activities go on here, from yoga and Qigong classes to live music and activities for kids to full scale festivals. In August their Kimchi Farm Festival, when different local beer producers present themselves, is famous.
The farm was squatted, after which it became a legal organization closely tied to De Regenboog, an organization that helps out people with a range of problems from addictions to poverty and loneliness.
The nature, the relaxed atmosphere, the fresh biological meals and their beautiful garden are all reason to pop over there and spend a nice evening in the summer in Amsterdam. You can get married here on this beautiful location as well.
Buurtboerderij Ons Genoegen is open every day.
Menu and prices:
Beer (Jupiler) from tap €2,-; 3-course menu € 8,00 (Wednesday €5,-) only with reservation, call before 15.00: 020-3376820.
Crowd: unpretentious, children and 30+.
When to go: have a nice dinner in the large garden and watch a live band afterwards
How to get there: by bike, tram 10, bus 48
3. Mini-festivals @ DOK Amsterdam
Dok is a restaurant with lots of extras. First of all: the place is located in the industrial harbour area of Amsterdam. Doesn’t sound very romantic, but the large space along the IJ water is used as a terrace and has a stunning view. In summer, if the weather lets them have their way, there is small scale festival here, with live dj’s. The festival named Thuishaven is not free however and tickets are best to be bought in advance. The space is also available for expositions for artists (no cost) and for rental for weddings.
Except on the days of the festival, Dok Amsterdam is closed on Saturday and Sunday.
Menu and prices:
BLT: €6,25. 3-course surprise dinner: €27,50.
Crowd: slightly upscale
When to go: have a late dinner and watch the sun set
How to get there: by bike or car only, see route on website
4. Rainairai @ Westergasfabriek
Rainairai is located at the Amsterdam Westergasfabriek area, but it’s rather far apart from all the other bars and restaurants so it’s easy to miss. And it doesn’t deserve to be missed.
The restaurant has a wonderful terrace that’s sunny in the morning and early afternoon. It’s large, but still quiet. Rainairai serves tasty Algerian food, which means lot of curry like spices and a large choice for vegetarians.
You can choose to go nomadic all the way and eat from low tables while seated on cushions and rugs on the floor. In the evening, the fires outside are lit and you can really feel like you’re in some dessert in North Africa (close you eyes for this trick).
Rainairai has another restaurant on Prinsengracht, in the Jordaan area. Here they let you lie on a a roof along the canal while you eat or just enjoy a drink. Recommended experience.
Rainairai is open every day from 12.00 except on Mondays.
Menu and prices:
Algerian, halal and mostly biologic. Nomadic Mezze Lunch €12,50. Nomadic Mezze diner 2-courses €33,50.
Crowd: Locals with a higher than average budget.
How to get there: Bus 21, tram 10 both Van Hallstraat or walking.
5. De Cantina @ Het Rijk van de Keizer
If you really want to leave the hectic city life and enjoy an afternoon in the Dutch meadows, The Rijk van de Keizer might be just your place to be. The Rijk van Keizer is a catering company with a wonderful location for weddings and meetings, but you easily spend a day hanging around the garden and the Dutch cows grazing.
Chill out in a hammock, read a mag at the reading table or catch up with your friends online with free wifi. Eats and drinks come from De Cantina, where they prepare you breakfast, lunch and dinner with ingredients that come straight
from their own vegetable garden. How does that sound?
Het Rijk van de Keizer/ Cantina is open every day.
Menu and prices: Organic, fresh and seasonal.
Crowd: easy going and somewhat alternative
How to get there: by bike, about 20 minutes from Sloterdijk station. Or bus 21, check website for more information.
When to go: Every last Sunday of the month there is a special ‘dinner with theatrical ingredients’.
6. Roest @ Oostenburg
One article on What’s up with Amsterdam already mentiones Roest, the bar located on one of the islands of Amsterdam that was used for industrial shipyards, steamboat harbour and steam engine factory.
Since then, the club and relaxing hangout has developed into a real hotspot. Every week, new events are added, from yoga sessions, acoustic musical performances, vintage market, massive dance parties and more recently, theatre.
Thanks to their imaginative owners, there’s always something special going on at Roest. And the place does well without the organised entertainment. The waterside terrace is one of the best terraces of Amsterdam, the relaxing crowd, the sandy beach and children’s playground alone make you feel happy in the sunshine.
Amsterdam Roest is open every day. Check calendar for events.
Menu and prices
No service, but DIY counter with drinks and snacks. DIY-barbecue on request.
Crowd: young adults to young parents.
How to get there: Tram 10 or 26. Bus 43.
7. Hannekes Boom
Like Roest, Hannekes Boom has popped up on this website before and the bar and restaurant has grown bigger and bigger over the last years.The terrace is one of the best of Amsterdam. If the roof terrace and spacious outside terrace seats are all taken, just sit on the dock of the bay and dangle your feet towards the water while you watch the boats go by.
Hannekes Boom is open every day from 11.00 to 1 am and till 3 am in weekend.
Menu and prices
Different menu every week. Main courses from €12,50 to €16,50.
When to go: Wednesday afternoon there’s live music.
How to get there: 10 minutes walk from Central Station. Follow direction of the East Architecture Walk.