Now that the temperature in Amsterdam hits tropical values, somewhere around 30° Celsius, you might feel the urge to take a refreshing dive. Local newspaper ‘De Parool‘ summed up the 12 best official and unofficial places to go for a swim. As the newspaper is Dutch we decided to help you with a translation, so you will be able to find the nearest possibility for swimming as well. First off we would like to inform you that this list includes both official and unofficial places to swim. So if you decide to take a dive at one of the following spots, it’s at your own risk. But as the quality of the water in Amsterdam improved lately there’s not too much to worry about.
Swimming places within Amsterdam
If you want to go swimming in Amsterdam in open water it’s good to pick the right spot as the waterways are busy with boats. Therefore swimming in the canals is not allowed. Please go to one of the following twelve spots for a refreshing dive, there’s always one nearby.
1. Berlagebrug rowing club
On the Amstel river you’ll find rowing club ‘De Berlagebrug’. It’s situated just beside the Berlage Bridge 5 minutes from Amstel station, that can be reached with frequent connections by train, tram and subway. There’s jetty suitable for sunbathing and there are plenty of places around to go for something to eat or drink like Cafe Hesp. While swimming make sure not to get away to far from shore as its a busy waterway and watch out for the current.
In Amsterdam West your best bet to go for a swim is the Sloterplas (Sloterlake). It can be reached with both tram 7 and 14, get off at tram stop “Sloterpark”. The swimming area can be found on the South Eastern shore of the lake. There you’ll find ladders to safely get in and out of the water.
If you’re going for a serious good swimming spot, choose Gaasperplas (Gaasperlake). This is an official swimming spot and offers more than enough space for everyone. Best thing is that it’s not even that far from the center; subway 53 will take you there within 20 minutes from central station. For kids there are plenty of playgrounds around the lake. If you get tired of swimming there’s also enough space in the park for a long walk. Around the Gaasperplas you’ll find food stalls and free facilities such as toilets and showers.
4. De Nieuwe Meer
Swimming spot in the South of Amsterdam ‘De Nieuwe Meer’ also offers more than enough space for a safe swim. The best way to get there is by a bus in the direction of Schiphol Airport, get off at the stop ‘Anderlechtlaan’ or ‘Oude Haagse Weg’. The water is clean and there are multiple beaches to choose from. Might even be a good stop on your way to the airport!
5. De Hoge Dijk
Relatively quiet and undiscovered is swimming spot ‘De Hoge Dijk’ in the South East of Amsterdam. It can be reach by foot from station Holendrecht or Abcoude within 20 minutes, or by bus. It is a small lake near a golf course with designated swimming area. For kids there’s a separate puddling pool and beach.
6. ‘t Twiske
Park ‘t Twiske can be found North of Amsterdam. You can go there by bike which will take you a little of 30 minutes from Central Station. You can also take bus 392 from Central Station and hop off at the stop ‘Kolksloot’. As the park is a bit further away from the center, it’s an excellent place to spend the day relaxing, walking and swimming. There are over 10 swimming area’s and multiple walking routes through the park.
The Bogortuin is a big grass field on Java-Eiland, which is found east from the center. You can get to Java-Eiland by tram 10, or bus 48 and 65. There is plenty of room for sunbathing, but no real facilities. However there are cafe’s in the neighborhood.
In the newest district of Amsterdam IJburg, you’ll find Diemerpark, the little brother of the most popular city beach Blijburg. On warm days Blijburg is swarmed with people. For those who like a bit more rest the Diemerpark is a perfect alternative. Do bring your own food and drinks as there are no facilities around.
9. Blijburg aan Zee
Blijburg is one of our favorite spots for swimming. The city beach is found in IJburg, the newest part of Amsterdam. Tram 26 from Central Station will take you there in 25 minutes. From the last tram stop the beach is within walking distance. There’s a big sandy beach with facilities and designated swimming area. In the evening and in the weekends there frequently is music.
In the north of Amsterdam you will the Durgerdammerdijk. Bus 37 from Amsterdam Muiderport in the direction of Molenwijk will take you there. It’s a good spot for a quick dip in the water, but we wouldn’t recommend it for spending a whole day as there is not too much space to sit and no facilities.
The Ouderkerkerplas is a big lake South of Amsterdam. It’s rather hard to reach by public transport, so we recommend going by bike. There’s lots of space and doesn’t become particularly crowded. There’s both sand and grass, so you can pick the beach you like. Beverages can be bought from a food stall.
The Borneokade is another good spot for a quick dip. You will find in the East of Amsterdam in the Zeeburg district. You can dive from the jetty in to the deep water at your own risk. Downside is that there no facilities around