Amsterdam, famous for its liberal culture and coffee shops, is also well known among cyclists. But running in the Dutch capital is just as rewarding. You can discover the banks of its many canals at the pace of your stride. As well as its famous 'red light district'...
"Morals, simplicity, equality were the same in Amsterdam as in Sparta, and sobriety was greater," said Voltaire in the 17th century.
Today, the capital has become the cultural and financial centre of the Netherlands. A pedestrian and cycling city, the city has 165 canals and more than 1200 bridges! An almost unlimited playground. Accessible to all, as Amsterdam is geographically one of the flattest cities in the world.
A little history
The origins of the city lie in the Dam. In the 13th century, a dam was built by decision of the Count of Holland. This, together with a bridge, crossed the Amstel. The area below the dam became the first port of Amsterdam. In the 19th and 20th centuries, the area around the dam was filled in and became two of the capital's main thoroughfares. Today's Dam Square is the historic heart of the city, and an excellent starting point for your run!
Around the canals
Running along the water is a must in Amsterdam. However, the city has a reputation for having more bikes than people! So be careful not to encroach on their path. Along the waterways you will discover the city's thousands of barges, many of which are hotels.
But also the typical narrow houses of the Dutch capital. In the 17th century, the tax on houses was proportional to their width... Finally, flower shops, with stalls full of tulips, and cheese shops abound around the canals.
Running in old neighbourhoods
The fishing village that was the original Amsterdam has been transformed into a progressive metropolis.
The De Wallen district, also known as the 'Red Quarter', is famous for its shop windows with naked women.
Nearby, imposing medieval buildings stand alongside coffee shops.
The 'canal belt', the Grachtengordel, encircles the historic centre. Developed during the 'Dutch Golden Age' (17th century), its richly ornamented bourgeois residences embody the city's romantic aspect.
Discover the splendours of Amsterdam on Runnin'City!