Fall tones, cosy cafés, and also the chance to conceal from the ever-changing weather in one of Amsterdam’s many museums: Amsterdam in October is among the best times to visit the city, and not just because the golden leaves provide picture-perfect photo opportunities of the city!
Instead, you will find fewer crowds and hotel costs are significantly cheaper than in the summer. Here’s your go-to guide to find the best things to do in Amsterdam in autumn! Certainly one of my first ever visits to Amsterdam was really in October, when the leaves were changing and also the evenings were crisp.
This long weekend within the city allowed me to build up a new-found passion for the Dutch capital; one where cultural institutions were inviting where long evenings in the many historic bars around the city were spent chatting and drinking beer together with friends. If it’s the first amount of time in the Venice of the North, then check out my favorite Amsterdam travel tips to help you take full advantage of your visit.
Amsterdam weather in October
Like much of Northern and The european union, the elements in Amsterdam during October is extremely changeable and showers are frequent. As a result, I'd recommend bringing an umbrella plus some semi-waterproof shoes in case you get trapped while it is raining! Otherwise, you need to know that the average temperatures are highs of 15 degrees and lows of 7 degrees.
And if you’re going to the Dutch capital with the hope of enjoying the best of fall colours, then you should know that the precise time once the leaves change and drop depends entirely from year upon year. Typically, the leaves begin changing colour towards the end of September, carrying on through October, and finally falling in the trees during the start of November. As a result, to find the best of autumn leaves in Amsterdam, plan your visit for mid-October.
What to put on in Amsterdam in October
As a result of the less than simple to predict weather, the best way to pack for Amsterdam come early fall would be to take along plenty of layers. This means bringing along cute ankle boots like these ones, warm jackets, cardigans, easy-to-layer dresses, and lots of warm tights. I particularly love this company for getting pretty dresses that merge perfectly in Europe.
You should know before you go that Amsterdam uses the same plug sockets as much of continental Europe, which will be different from that which you typically use if you’re from The united states or the UK. Take along a universal travel adapter like this one to obtain by. And while English is widely spoken, it’s only polite to learn a few words of the local language; in this instance Dutch. Bring a simple phrasebook like this one with you.
Things to do in Amsterdam in October
Snap photos of the fall foliage
Amsterdam is definitely probably the most beautiful places to go to in Europe within the fall thanks to the abundance of lovely fall foliage reflected against the calm canals. For the very best photo snaps, I particularly recommend going to the Jordaan district as this is where the most historic canalside houses are to be seen. As a whole, there are over 400,000 streets lining the streets of Amsterdam, meaning that fall foliage is never too far away!
For people who wish to see beautiful fall foliage poor parkland, it’s worth noting that the biggest park in Amsterdam is that of Vondelpark. Expansive and huge, the green space is home to an array of walking trails, cycle paths (hands down, the easiest method to benefit from the city), as well as an open-air theatre.
Cosy up in a cute café or bar
Whether you’re in search of a speciality coffee or wish to sample a local beer, Amsterdam has no shortage of wonderful bars and cafés (an espresso shop is definitely an entirely different thing!) where one can hang out with friends, study, or make new friends!
During my newest visit to the Venice of the North, I particularly enjoyed frequenting Cafe de Sluyswacht. Housed against the backdrop of De Oude Schans canal and is set within a former 17th-century built canal keeper cottage. They even serve vegan Bitterballen for individuals who desire to sample a local delicacy having a meat-free twist!
For those people who are fans of history and don’t feel like veering too far from central Amsterdam, Int’Aepjen is really a quintessentially Dutch wooden bar where local beers are served inside a traditional setting. Reasonably priced drinks can be bought against the backdrop of a historic drinking establishment where sailors once traded monkeys for drinks!
Discover great finds of Amsterdam
Hidden, secret, and oh-so-quirky, there are many unusual things you can do in Amsterdam. From miniature canal houses hidden between two brick buildings towards the oldest café within the city, or even a museum dedicated entirely to cats, there’s something offbeat to find out for even the most discerning of travellers.
Come October, you’ll be much more happy to realize that the crowds from the summer dissipate, leaving behind a much emptier city where one can snap photos and explore for your heart’s content. Personal favourite great finds include purchasing the best cookie in Amsterdam from Van Stapele and discovering De Waag, the oldest non-religious building in Amsterdam.
Enjoy the very best of Amsterdam museums
When the leaves start dropping and the evenings become colder, there’s no better excuse than to head inside and explore the numerous cultural hubs and institutions that the city has to offer. If it’s your first amount of time in Amsterdam, then you need to head to the Rijksmuseum, which is home to many Dutch Masterpieces (book your tickets within advance).
For anyone who has seen the city before, there are more hidden gems and weird museums on offer. For instance, the Rembrandt House Museum (purchase the tickets here) provides the chance to go to the former artist’s home, as the beautifully appointed Willet-Holthuysen Museum (buy the tickets here) shows a glimpse into canalside houses of times gone by.
Explore the forgotten hofjes of Amsterdam
Secluded, from the beaten tourist track, and away from the crowds from the rest of the city, truth be told, the most famous of the Amsterdam hofjes is that of Begijnhof. However, what much traffic to Amsterdam don’t know is that there is a insightful hidden courtyards and corners worth discovering, especially during the autumn when the fall foliage frames the passageways beautifully!
Take a day trip from Amsterdam in the autumn
Thanks to its position within the Netherlands with easy transport links towards the rest of the country, Amsterdam provides a great base by which to explore the wider Holland region. The best fall excursions from the Dutch capital for seeing fall foliage range from the beautiful town of Leiden (so historic that it’s often filmed to face set for 17th-century ‘authentic’ Amsterdam) and the beautiful modern town of Rotterdam.
Celebrate Halloween in Amsterdam
Of course, the final day's October, i.e. the 31st from the month, heralds Halloween. Every year, there are a plethora of Halloween events around the end from the month. Look into the full guide for this year here.