24 hours in Amsterdam

24 hours Amsterdam

This winter break was quite a whirlwind of a trip. I had yet to visit the Netherlands and Belgium, so I decided that that was where I would explore. It also helped that I found a cheap flight into Amsterdam and out of Brussels. So I booked the tickets and figured I’d fill in the details over the coming weeks.

My schedule sadly only left me a full day in Amsterdam. There were other things I wanted to go both in the Netherlands and Belgium, so my time in Amsterdam was short but super sweet.

Body Worlds

After some breakfast at our hostel Bob’s Youth Hostel (which I just made the cutoff for as they don’t allow anyone older than 30), we headed out to the main strip to get our tickets for all of our adventures. By breakfast, I mean some fruit I bought at the grocery store. I was all about the budget traveler life on this trip.

The Body Worlds exhibit was cooler than I imagined. It’s basically an exhibition that shows you all about how the body works, with a focus on happiness. It basically takes you on a journey of what makes us happy and how happiness affects the body. There were many interactive parts including a bicycle and swings. I went with my friend Mackenzie and the swings were her favorite part.

24 hours Amsterdam

The exhibit displays over 200 specimens of real human bodies. It goes through every part and system of the body.

24 hours Amsterdam

This guy is doing parkour.

24 hours Amsterdam

Saxophone-playing body. It reminded me of those old Sexy Saxman videos on youtube.

24 hours Amsterdam

24 hours Amsterdam

They had a part where you could check your blood pressure. This was mine. I think it’s pretty good and healthy.

24 hours Amsterdam

They also had this cool interactive screen that tracked your emotions. It felt like we were characters in the game the Sims. Did anyone else spend their early adolescence playing the Sims? Good memories. Basically you could make the meters go up or down. I could not get the sadness meter to read on mine. I tried to make faces like I was crying but it just thought I was smiling.

I believe that’s Mackenzie’s meter that says she’s super happy.

24 hours Amsterdam

I found this diagram to be very interesting as well. One of the most interesting parts (and potentially one of my favorites) was the part that compared what families from different countries eat and how much they spend on food each week. It was cool to see the differences and similarities.

24 hours Amsterdam

This is a Japanese family.

24 hours in Amsterdam

And this is an American family. However I will say that a normal week for me does not look like this. I really do not eat much red meat or fast food. I tend to cook with a lot of vegetables and rice. Perhaps I’m just not the average American.

The exhibit started on the 5th or 6th floor. You rode an elevator up and then walked down from floor to floor. Each stairwell had a cool little phrase or saying about happiness.

24 hours Amsterdam 24 hours Amsterdam

Overall Body Worlds rocked. It’s definitely worth a visit.

Time to get on a boat

In the evening, we took a little boat cruise to see the Amsterdam Light Festival. A boat cruise in Amsterdam is a must. Since the city is full of canals, it’s one of the best ways to see everything. Around this time, you can either take a cruise during the day or at night. I thought it would be spectacular to see Amsterdam all lit-up for the holidays. What I didn’t realize is that the Amsterdam Light Festival is a series of art work that uses light. It was super cool.

We went on a night cruise with Lovers Canal Cruises. It’s called the Water Colors Cruise and it is happening daily through January 21st. So if you have a trip to Amsterdam in the next few weeks, you should go! If you come to Amsterdam after the 21st, there are other cruises you can take with the company as well.

24 hours Amsterdam

The only downside of our cruise experience was that it was raining. That meant that the there were raindrops on the windows, making my photos less clear. However I still feel like they capture the essence and experience of seeing the city lit-up from the water.

24 hours Amsterdam

The raindrops kind of gave me freckles here.

24 hours Amsterdam 24 hours Amsterdam 24 hours Amsterdam 24 hours Amsterdam

24 hours Amsterdam 24 hours Amsterdam 24 hours Amsterdam 24 hours Amsterdam

We had a great time!

Around the city

Here are a few more shots I got from just wandering around the city.

24 hours Amsterdam 24 hours Amsterdam

24 hours Amsterdam

I will say that 24 hours is not nearly enough time in Amsterdam. I want to return to Amsterdam at some point but stay in an Airbnb a bit outside of the center. I’d love to get a feel for other parts of the city. Karen from Wanderlusting K has some good tips about what to see in Amsterdam in a day. She is an expat living in the Netherlands, so I’d definitely trust her advice for Amsterdam and the Netherlands.

Have you been to Amsterdam? What did you do and see?

We received complimentary tickets to Body Worlds and the Watercolors Cruise through Tours and Tickets. All opinions are my own.

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  1. Oh you defenitely should go back to Amsterdam and visit the Waterlooplein, the Jordaan, the Zeven Straatjes etc. There is a lot to see and do in Amsterdam!

  2. Amsterdam looks beautiful and your pictures are awesome! The body worlds exhibit looked amazing. Such an interesting concept and I LOVE the fact that it had a focus on happiness. I can’t say I am surprised though on the amount of food we buy a week. That’s a bit of a shame though.

  3. There’s so much you can do in Amsterdam, I definitely need to go there, finally. Wandering through the city seems so nice! The pictures of the humans bodies are a little bit shocking but maybe in the future it would be cool to see it with my own eyes.

  4. Oh dear that such a short time to experience Amsterdam, but you did pack some awesome moments into your trip. Hopefully you’ll go back soon and get a chance to visit the Rijksmuseum and Anne Frank’s house

  5. So fun reading about your experience in Amsterdam. We’re headed that way next year and looking forward to (hopefully) spending more than 24 hours there. Thanks for sharing your recommendations!

  6. wow, I loved the pictures from the body world exhibit! I have to go check it out! It’s funny to have come across your post because I’m thinking about visiting amsterdam, hehe

  7. As a Licensed Massage Therapist, I think my favorite thing you talked about here would be Body Worlds. I think we had a similar exhibit (or maybe the same?) travel around the US recently.

  8. Body Worlds sounds like such an insightful and interesting exhibition. I first heard about part of it (the body sections) while I was traveling in Vietnam and couldn’t sleep one evening (the only English channel in the room was Discovery and they were covering it). I thought it was on one side pretty creepy but on another side very interesting. I like how they combined elements to focus this exhibition on happiness!

  9. Netherlands is such a beautiful country, I am glad you had an amazing time! I lived there for four years but didn’t really get to see Amsterdam so I’d like to return one day. The Body Worlds exhibition looks so interesting!

  10. Amsterdam is so beautiful. Coincidently I had a journey break at Amsterdam last year and that was also for 24 hours. I so much want to go back and visit all the places again with plenty of time. Thank you for your recommendations and sharing the experience.

  11. Wow. Amsterdam has always been in my bucket list and I would love to cross that off the list this year. What a wonderful place! Thanks for the virtual tour. It made me really wanting to go!

  12. I have never been to Amsterdam but you had a packed 24 hours in the city. I would like to visit and to go to Body Worlds. I was a little sad by the American exhibit. It truly shows how Americans have poor eating habits. This post has inspired me to add this city to my travel bucket list.

  13. I have never been to Amsterdam but after reading this post, I want to go. You were able to do so much in 24 hours. I especially like the idea of going to Body Worlds. I was a bit sad by the American exhibit. It shows very poor eating habits. You have definitely made me want to add this city to my bucket list.

  14. when I think of Amsterdam I always think red light district.. I love that this post has helped me change that, now I will think of the beautiful moments you’ve shared

  15. I’ve never been to Amsterdam, but it looks fun. Body worlds exhibit came to my city, but I missed it. Looks like you enjoyed it.

  16. We had a bodies exhibit here in Atlanta and it’s so freaking cool!I always hear cool things about Amsterdam!

  17. I’ve wanted to go to Amsterdam ever since I read about it in The Fault in our Stars so now I have more ideas of what to see and do there! The Body World exhibit looks so weird and cool, I would definitely enjoy seeing that!

  18. That was such a day well spent! Love the photos especially in the exhibit! They’re just amazing!

  19. It looks like you had a great time in Amsterdam. I’ve been there a year ago and I do really enjoy spent my whole day in seeing stunning scenery.

  20. The museum came to Singapore before and I love how it teaches and show the human body in the most realistic way! 24 hours in Amsterdam is not a lot but you’ve made full use of the time there~

  21. I love Amsterdam, it’s such a gorgeous city. I wish I went to that body museum though, it looks so cool.

  22. Hi Nina. 24 hours in Amsterdam is certainly not enough. The good thing about that is that you have got a perfect reason to come back and explore even more. Love, Lieske

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