Travel shows on Direct TV often spotlight Amsterdam and the Netherlands. Amsterdam is one of the leading cultural centers in Europe, and a vacation there produces a myriad of debaucherous and enriching activities to choose from. A variety of performances can be found throughout different venues in the city – this includes street performances. A local newspaper is a good source for current theatrical highlights.
The city has about thirty parks which are lush, clean and a welcome escape from the hustle and bustle of metropolitan city life. The largest park, Vondelpark, sees over 10,000,000 visitors each year. The amphitheater inside the park holds local concerts of classical music and live performances. Children can enjoy the 6 playgrounds, and everyone will appreciate the tropical plants.
The Artis Zoo has over 6,000 animals – many of these endangered. The aquarium boasts reconstructions of different ecosystems and the planetarium centers around exploring space and astronomy as the giant telescopes give visitors a unique look at their night sky.
The famous Dutch canals of Amsterdam have become symbolic of its unique charm. They cover one-quarter of the surface of the city and have always been considered a source of wealth. Tours and cruises on the canals are offered frequently, or paddle boats allow for independent exploration.
Much of the resplendent charm of the city is only visible at night. The cinemas and theaters are always busy. Also, the night clubs, cafes and restaurants of Amsterdam get invaded by tourists after dark. This is largely because the city has decriminalized prostitution, pornography, and soft-drugs in accord with their progressive philosophies. The locals advise tourists to visit the Red Light District last on their trip as they admonish that that area is not all the city has to offer.