When it comes to being liberal, the Netherlands is probably one of the most liberal countries in the world. They were the first to legalize a lot of things that remain illegal or taboo in most countries of the world. Amsterdam, the capital city of the Netherlands is home to many pleasures as well as dangers that a tourist may face on their trip there. Here are a few things of what not to do while visiting Amsterdam.
- Do not rent a car: Amsterdam has quaint bridges and canals that meander through the city. If you want to travel outside the city, a car will be a great asset, but if you want to discover the city for yourself, leave the car behind and opt for cycles instead. You’ll notice nearly every other person there doing the same thing.
- Advertise yourself as a tourist in the Red Light District: It is known as the Red Light District for a reason – and nobody wants their photographs clicked in taboo situations. Even if you are a tourist, this is a major mistake that could land you into a lot of trouble. Walking down the streets is not a problem – enjoy yourself and take in the sights as how you would do in any other city, but don’t stare at the prostitutes or try to take pictures – you may be asking for a lot of trouble.
- Stand in Queue for the Anne Frank Museum: Be a smart traveler. Standing in long queues is a thing of the past. This is a museum worth visiting, but you may be daunted by the really long lines that can be found outside the museum. Be a smart and savvy traveler and book your tickets in advance.
- Do Give way to cyclists: Amsterdam is a city of cyclists – and give way or run the chance of being run over. The Netherlands is a bike oriented country with majority of its population using this mode of transportation to get around, especially in the city. Keep an eye out for them and don’t stand in their way.
- Don’t buy drugs on the street: The Netherlands is a pretty liberal country, but don’t take it for granted. As with any place, anything you buy that seems like a dodgy transaction will turn out to be a dodgy transaction. Drugs procured on the street could be of dubious quality and can land you in hospital if you’re lucky. If you want to indulge in smoking up, head for the coffeehouses where it is legal and you know you will not get bad quality products.
- Party like a mad hatter and go mad at night: Public Drunkenness is an offence here and you will be penalized for it accordingly. The capital city is a great party place at night, but there are people with bad intent who may drug you or pick your pockets. Be a smart traveler and keep your wits about you.
- Do go for a canal tour: Amsterdam is a city with kilometers of canals running through its veins. This is a must to experience. With many companies all offering great competitive deals to go for a tour on one of the many canals, you’re bound to get a good deal with a bit of research, especially if you could be offered a complimentary dinner.
- Leave your common sense behind: True, Amsterdam is legal for marijuana, but there are many dangers in every street corner. Be wary of people offering free food or drinks as you don’t want to be a victim of having a spiked drink.