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Aug 14, 2007 02:21 PM

Amsterdam on layover

I will have a layover in Amsterdam on my way to Uganda next month. I'll have five hours on the way there (not sure if it will be worth it to go into town) and seven on the way back (will probably go into town). Is there any restaurant I can go that will be easy to get to and give me a pleasant Amsterdam experience (not the "tea house" kind). It has been 15 years since I've been there.

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  1. hmmm, 5 hours is tricky -they probably want you to be there 2 or 3 hours before. You take the train downstares and will be in central station in 20 minutes, but unfortunately, only crappy burger places there -avoid at all cost.
    There are lot of places at the airport itself, very overpriced though....but I'd stay there if I were you.

    1. i've been researching for an upcoming trip in 3 weeks. Although as I understand, the dutch are not renowned for their food, I have found an interesting place to try called visaandschelde . Its cuisine is seafood with a nice looking menu and fairly reasonable prices. No idea where it is in relation to the airport. Website is Please report back if you go.

      1 Reply
      1. re: berna

        Good idea! this is quite close to the airport -not very cheap and not a very interesting neighborhood -more geared towards the businesstraveller, but it might be worthwhile.
        As a expat gal from Amsterdam I might add that Dutch cuisine does not really exist -but we definitely do have some great restaurants ;)

      2. You didn't say what time of day you'll be in Amsterdam, but if it's between noon and dinner time you might want to save some time and hassle, and take the train just 5 minutes to Amsterdam Zuid/WTC (trains leave every 15 min or so from platforms 1&2 at Schiphol). It's the new business/financial center of Amsterdam and more nice restaurants have set up there in recent years. Two I'd highly recommend that are a short walk from the Zuid station are Brasserie Pays-Bas and Delikeet; both are quite feasible for a 5-hour layover.

        On the way back, with a few more hours, maybe take the train to Zuid and then get a cab from the taxi rank there to De Kas? It will save you 20+ euros in cab fare without having to deal with the Centraal Station mess.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Bradbury

          Definitely agree about Amsterdam Zuid. You can find quite decent restos there and make it back in time. You MUST give yourself a lot of time in the summer - the queues at Schiphol are enormous.

          Yes, only go to a place like De Kas if you have time to appreciate it. The Zuid station places are designed for businesspersons, so although you can have a somewhat more leisurely business-meeting lunch if you desire, they are also used to getting people in and out within their lunch hour.

          That is a pleasant Amsterdam experience in that you are seeing a lot of contemporary Amsterdamers in their normal day's life - you won't encounter a lot of tourists.

          I'm used to Centraal station, actually it is not a mess, except for the current reconstruction, but if you aren't, all the tram lines are very confusing. Right next to Centraal station it is all tourist crap - not just burgers, but other overpriced or dodgy restos.

        2. Hi, I'd definitely recommend De Reiger if it's for dinner, which I'd written a review This is a very local traditional brown cafe near the Anne Frank Museum - the food is always great. For lunch I'd recommend Puccini Cafe that has a fun view of canal and people near Waterlooplein. Their sandwiches, smoothies and desserts are fabulous! I agree, there's no such thing as dutch cuisine except what they call high dutch..go figure...

          1 Reply
          1. re: greenolivetree

            I disagree. I don't much like traditional Dutch cuisine - a peasant, cold-weather, basic cuisine (we could say the same about traditional Qu├ębec cuisine, despite the French touches and absence of dour Calvinism) but it certainly exists.

            I'm in Amsterdam right now, by the way. But no expense account - doing doctoral research.

          2. I would not leave the airport with a 5 hour layover, since you risk missing your next flight.
            There is a nice art museum at the airport to enjoy!