Leisure & study in Amsterdam
When you study and live in Amsterdam, you will regularly have time to do sports, enjoy the cultural offerings, go shopping, enjoy the nightlife or spend time in nature. For newcomers to Amsterdam, it’s nice to be able to get a feel for where you can go.
To get to know Amsterdam a little better, here is Amsterdam in One Swipe!
After that, make sure you check out the site of the municipality of Amsterdam if you want to find out what Amsterdam has to offer in terms of leisure activities. You will find everything about art & culture, sports, events, parks and – how could it be otherwise – sailing in Amsterdam.
If you are looking for more, or for something in particular, scroll through to:
For a good overview of cultural venues, click on The Musicians Guide to Amsterdam (made by CvA students).
Sports in Amsterdam
Where can you play sports at low cost?
USC – sports centre for Universiteit van Amsterdam (UvA) and Hogeschool van Amsterdam (HvA) students
Conservatorium van Amsterdam (CvA) students can enjoy sports at the USC sports centre at a low cost. The USC is a sports centre especially for students of the UvA and HvA. The rates at the USC are affordable, but the quality is excellent, and they offer a wide range of sports. USC is affiliated with the branch association NL Actief and the Royal Dutch Strength & Fitness Association (KNKF).
Of course, there are many other possibilities for exercising in Amsterdam. Check with local gyms or fitness centres to see if they have discounts for students. Often that’s the case!
As a true sports city, Amsterdam hosts several sporting events throughout the year. These are the two most important sports calendars with a selection of upcoming sport events:
- Major sporting events on the iAmsterdam.com calendar
- Sports events on the calendar of the municipality of Amsterdam
Running and cycling in Amsterdam
The city of Amsterdam is big and very busy. Fortunately, it offers many opportunities for running and cycling. On the municipal website you’ll find a number of marked running routes where you can go wild on your own or together. Looking for a training programme? Then these are a few of the possibilities:
Want to take it a little more seriously? Here you’ll find the running calendar for Amsterdam!
Would you rather go cycling?
- Cycling route in and around Amsterdam, with the Conservatorium van Amsterdam / Central Station as your starting point.
- These cycling routes with Amsterdam as start and finish also show you a lot of Amsterdam and its surroundings.
Parks & Sport
In Amsterdam there are no fewer than 33 parks where you can do sports and relax.
Arts & Culture in Amsterdam
Culture at the Amsterdamse Hogeschool voor de Kunsten (AHK)
Agenda Conservatorium van Amsterdam
The CvA only lists events organized by the conservatory itself. For information about projects organized by external parties in our halls, please contact the organizer in question.
Concert venues of Amsterdam
In Amsterdam you can go to concerts and live music every day. From mega concerts and music events to international musicians on world-class stages. Or opt for one of the many intimate live performances on the smaller stages. On the website www.iamsterdam.com you’ll find all the upcoming events in Amsterdam. You can also find an overview of all the concert venues in Amsterdam and the surrounding area.
Amsterdam is the place to be for all kinds of classical music, from Renaissance to contemporary works. Well-known locations include the Royal Concertgebouw and Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ, old churches and other unique venues. On iamsterdam.com you will find an overview of upcoming and returning classical concerts and events in Amsterdam.
Opera fans will be in for a treat in Amsterdam. The city is home to De Nationale Opera, based in the Nationale Opera & Ballet (formerly known as Het Muziektheater). Various opera performances also take place at The Royal Concertgebouw and Royal Theater Carré, and in addition, there are special events in churches and the open air.
Jazz, Blues & World Music
Jazz lovers are sure to find their niche in Amsterdam – one of the best jazz cities in Europe. World-famous events have put the Netherlands on the map as the place to go for jazz, blues and world music. Amsterdam has a reputation to uphold when it comes to legendary live performances at attractive jazz venues such as the Bimhuis, Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ, North Sea Jazz Club, Café Alto and the Cotton Club. Check out which concerts are taking place in Amsterdam soon!
Pop & Rock
Amsterdam breathes live music and bands love performing in Amsterdam, so you can find great music anytime, anywhere in the city. Check out the listing of upcoming concerts below to see if your favourite band is performing soon or discover great new artists!
Festivals & Events
Cultural and Culinary Festivals & Events
Amsterdam provides the setting for hundreds of festivals each year. Don’t just think big dance festivals because they come in all shapes and sizes. Internationally renowned festivals such as the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam: IDFA, the Amsterdam Light Festival and Amsterdam Pride attract large audiences. The many culinary festivals offer delicious snacks and drinks. Culture lovers will enjoy film, dance, music and theatre at Amsterdam’s cultural festivals. Find your favourite festivals here.
Overview of cultural venues
Amsterdam boasts one of the largest cultural offerings in the world. There are hundreds of clubs, theatres, museums, music venues and cinemas to be found in the city. An overview of Amsterdam’s cultural spots:
Discounts with student pass
Your student ID card gives you much more than just access to lectures. Showing your student card will get you a nice discount at almost all cultural locations. But you can also get discounts at many stores, hairdressers, restaurants and cafes by showing your student card. Make sure you always have your student ID with you. On studentenkorting.nl you’ll find a wide range of categories where you can get a discount by showing your student ID.
Leisure time in Amsterdam
There are no fewer than 1,150 restaurants and 1,515 bars and cafés in Amsterdam. But what are the hippest hotspots? Where do you have the best views? And which restaurants are suitable for a small budget? From Michelan-star restaurants to the most delicious comfort food and special beers; you’ll find them on www.iamsterdam.nl’s restaurant overview, including a list of Culinary events.
But of course, we’ve also found a few other lists that are perfect for a student’s budget:
- Studenten-dining Budget-list Amsterdam
- Budget restaurants in Amsterdam
- Student Food in Amsterdam
- Cheap eats in Amsterdam
With more than 5,500 stores in Amsterdam, you could visit 4 stores every day in four years of study without going to the same store twice. In short, you could possibly use some help with that. For a complete overview of shopping areas, shopping malls, or just those little speciality shops, check out iamsterdam.com’s shopping overview. You’ll find the best stop-off points, but also a complete overview of all the stores in Amsterdam. Also good to know:
Forests, parks and beaches in Amsterdam
Want to get away from the traffic and the hustle and bustle of the city? Then head off to one of Amsterdam’s nature reserves. From cosy hang-outs like the Vondelpark and the Westerpark to the spacious Amsterdamse Bos with a real goat farm.