The Nine Streets, or as the locals call it, De Negen Straatjes is Amsterdam’s most iconic shopping district. The grid of nine streets that crisscross through the historic Jordaan district are crammed full of independent boutiques, dutch designers and vintage treasures. Spend and afternoon wondering around this picturesque shopping area to discover the best of Amsterdam fashion and design. The area is also home to a number of brilliant cafes including Lottie’s at the Hoxton Hotel which serves some of the best brunch in Amsterdam.
Source: De 9 Straatjes
Just west of Centraal Station away from the crowds of tourists, you’ll find the mile long stretch of shops that runs from Haarlemmerdijk to Haarlemmerstraat. This trendy street is a world away from the nearby Spui and is a charming place to while away a morning or afternoon looking around the shops. Fashion-lovers will be pleased with the variety of clothes shops while home decor enthusiasts will have a field day in all the stores selling bric-a-brac for the home. When your feet are getting tired and you need to recuperate, take a break at Toki, one of the best coffee shops in Amsterdam and a relaxing place to escape the Christmas shoppers.
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If you’re looking for international high street chains then Kalverstraat and Leidsestraat just south of Centraal Station are where you need to head. From budget stores like Primark and H&M to more design-conscious shops like COS and Arket, you’ll find it all here. Leidsestraat is also home to the largest Hema store in Amsterdam, which is a destination in its own right. Try and get here early as it gets very busy. Especially around Christmas.
Source: Amsterdam Sights
The area around Dam Square is hectic and full of tourists, but also home to the best department store in the city. The huge De Bijenkorf department store looms over the square and the nearby Magna Plaza is also worth a visit. At Christmas time, both stores are lit up with fabulous lights and also feature some of the most creative window displays in the city.
Just north of the Rijksmuseum and in the centre of Amsterdam’s canal ring, which is one of the best areas to stay in Amsterdam is the arts and antiques quarter. This district is focused around the iconic Spiegelkwartier street which is lined with antique shops, second-hand art dealers and galleries. For valuable Dutch designs such as Delft pottery, this is the place to come. If you’re buying Christmas presents for a collector, there’s no better street to be on. It’s also a magical street to just browse, so set aside some time here on your next visit to Amsterdam.
Chanel. Prada. Gucci. All the biggest names in luxury fashion can be found on P.C. Hooftstraat. This shopping street in the affluent neighbourhood to the east of Vondel Park is a Christmas shopping paradise, if money is no object. The store fronts are grand and the clientele is glamorous. It’s Amsterdam’s answer to London’s Bond Street and Park Avenue.
Source: Ur Design Mag
If you have a taste for the finer things, but your budget doesn’t always stretch that far, then venture out of town to Batavia Stad Amsterdam. This designer outlet is a shopping Mecca with over 150 stores, all selling discounted goods. The complex is designed to feel like a small village, so it’s actually quite a relaxing place to spend a day.
Amsterdam hasn’t quite caught up with the likes of London yet when it comes to opening times, with most shops shutting at 6pm from Monday - Saturday. On Thursday, the high street stores are open slightly later, closing at 8pm. On Sundays many of the smaller boutiques are shut, and the high street stores are just open from 12-6pm. De Bijenkorf is the exception to this rule, with the doors staying open 7 days a week until 8pm. So if you’re wanting to do some Christmas shopping in Amsterdam, try and get it done from Monday - Saturday. You’ll have much more choice.
A note on shop assistants in Amsterdam. Nearly all of them speak fluent English, in fact, you’re more likely to come across a shop assistant who doesn’t speak Dutch than doesn’t speak English. So if you have any questions or problems, just ask, they’re usually more than happy to help.