Fun Festivals in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is a city that likes to party, quite literally, as the city plays host to several hundred festivals each year. They seem to celebrate even the smallest thing in a big way, from holidays to music and film to their culture. The Dutch come out and rejoice no matter the occasion.
Many of the festivals in Amsterdam are world famous and definitely some you want to attend! Whether you are a native of the city or just there for a weekend visit, check out some of these fun festivals in Amsterdam. You will be amazed at how the locals kick up their heels and party.
Before heading out to nose around a unique festival or two, be sure to find an Amsterdam luggage storage location on your way to drop off your things. Festivals can get pretty crowded. Don’t lug big bags like backpacks or shopping finds through the crowds; instead, move freely and check out all these festivals have to offer. Plan your trip around a few of these celebrations and bring your enthusiasm!
Dutch Creativity Festival
Imagine an entire festival dedicated to encouraging your creativity and the link between creative growth and a happy, successful life both at home and at work. The Dutch Creativity Festival is just that. Held in mid-November for two days, the festival hosts five stages with over 40 sessions where over 65 speakers will explore the link between creative growth and success.
Past speakers and creative leaders include Patagonia, Afaina de Jong, Edson Sabajo (Patta), Random Studio, CZAR Amsterdam, and VICE. Interactive academy sessions hosted by Design Bridge, What Design Can Do, and Miro will help you develop new creative skills that you can implement into your daily life.
Location: The Student Hotel Amserdam City (TSH), Wibautstraat 129, 1091 GL Amsterdam
Date: haven't announced
Keti Koti Festival
Held on July 1st, the Keti Koti Festival commemorates the abolishment of slavery and is held in several cities and towns throughout the Netherlands. Amsterdam hosts the Keti Koti Festival as a reminder of the importance of equality among men. The meaning of Keti Koti in the Surinamese language is broken chains.
The Antillean and Surinamese Dutch do make up a significant portion of Amsterdam’s population and have greatly contributed to its culture since being exempted in 1863. Explore all the festival has to offer and enjoy live music, dance performances, films, and even lectures.
Sample traditional food and drink and then stroll through a Caribbean market or check out local artists displaying their artwork. The Oosterpark square comes alive and even the mayor of Amsterdam has been known to drop by the festival.
Location: Oosterpark, 1092 AT Amsterdam
Date: annualy on the 1st of July
Amsterdam Dance Event
The Amsterdam Dance Event, or ADE, is held for five days in mid-October and is a city-wide event. One of the best festivals highlighting electronic music and dance of all genres. ADE is the biggest club festival in the world and is the best electronic music festival in Europe.
Everything from techno, house, electro, trance, hip-hop, acid, drum ‘n’ bass, and so much more can be found. With over 2,500 artists taking the stage at 200 different locations throughout Amsterdam over a five-day festival, you will definitely dance your heart out and feel the beats vibrate through your soul.
One of the more popular elements of the Amsterdam Dance Event is ADE by Day, which features daytime programs that transform the city into one of the biggest pop-up shops in the world where you can sign up for hardware workshops, studio sessions, movie screenings, exhibitions, and outdoor performances by some of the best DJs in the business.
Date: 18 - 22 October, 2023
Rolling Kitchens or Rollende Keukens
Each spring, during the holiday weekend of Ascension Day, the Rolling Kitchens Food Festival rolls into town with dozens of food trucks and mobile kitchens creating a gigantic open-air culinary experience. Food from around the globe can be found, so head to Westergas and be part of the excitement.
From Italian pizza to Dutch delicacies to Texan BBQ, the smells wafting through the park will make your mouth water. Spend hours strolling through the food trucks and sampling a smorgasbord of treats and dishes. Drop by one or two of the pop-up bars along the way for tasty cocktails, craft beer, local wine, a soft drink, or even a smoothie or health drink.
Location: Westergas, Haarlemmerweg 8E, 1014 BE Amsterdam
Date: 8 - 12 May, 2024
Amsterdam Coffee Festival
With over 100 different artisan roasters, gourmet food stalls, and equipment makers, the Amsterdam Coffee Festival is the place to go to find some of the best baristas in Europe. Caffeine lovers will rejoice when this festival comes to the city in the Spring, usually in March or April.
Sign up for a workshop and learn how to become a top-notch barista or create coffee-inspired cocktails. Coffee will bring you in but the live music and party atmosphere will keep you here for hours. Local artisans will also be showcasing their art, giving you more to see and experience while at the Amsterdam Coffee Festival.
Location: Westergas, Haarlemmerweg 8E, 1014 BE Amsterdam
Date: 4 - 6 April, 2024
Koningsdag or King’s Day
The Dutch know how to celebrate and Koningsdag is one of the most important festivals held throughout the Netherlands. Amsterdam goes all out for King’s Day which honors the arrival of a male monarch in the Netherlands and is the official birthday of the monarch. This national holiday was Queen’s Day prior to 2013 but when Willem-Alexander became king, the holiday name was changed.
The streets of Amsterdam are decorated in vivid colors and are filled with street food vendors, performers, and even a huge carnival. The day starts with trumpets blaring, literally, and announces the start of King’s Day. The day commences with an orchestra and an impressive fireworks display.
Location: whole city
Date: 24 April, 2024
See the City Celebrations
Amsterdam is the place to be when you are searching for amusement and excitement. Plan your visit to the city around its very active festival schedule and pick the festival or festivals that grab your interest the most. From celebrating King’s Day to enjoying a smorgasbord of street food delicacies to dancing the night away, you will find fun festivals in Amsterdam.
P.S. If you missed info about music festivals in Amsterdam or in the whole Netherlands, check these articles: Biggest Hip-Hop Music Festivals in Europe, Biggest Music Festival In Europe, or Rock Festivals in Europe.