Want to escape the bustling city of Amsterdam? Then make sure to head out to the forest of Amsterdam for a fun day out in nature!
The Amsterdamse Bos is three times the size of New York’s Central Park and offers tons of fun activities for the whole family.
Whether you’re spending a hot summer day dipping in the big pond or enjoying a gorgeous winter walk, this beautiful park offers plenty of adventurous activities and much-needed relaxation during all seasons!
ALSO READ Your Guide to Summer in Amsterdam
TIP: Bring cash! The shops and restaurants don’t always offer wireless payment methods due to the lack of internet coverage in the forest.
1. Arrive by Museum Tram
From April to the end of October, you can visit the Amsterdamse Bos by taking the super fancy Museum Tram.
The authentic old tram departs every Sunday from 11.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. from the beautiful 100-year-old Haarlemmermeerstation in the South of Amsterdam.
Along the way, you’ll discover some beautiful parts of Amsterdam. The tram takes you to the entrance of the forest and goes further to Amstelveen before it heads back.
2. Rent a bicycle
The Amsterdamse Bos is one of Europe’s biggest parks and is perfect for cycling. Get yourself a map and discover all the highlights of the forest during a special 14 km tour.
You can rent a city bike or tandem at Bike Rental Amsterdamse Bos, which is situated at the entrance, opposite from De Boswinkel (which is also a great spot to buy souvenirs!).
3. Book a boat excursion
From May to September you can chug through the waterways of the Amsterdamse Bos during a 1,5 hour boat excursion.
You can book your excursions and other activities at the Visitors’ Centre, near the entrance of the forest.
Extra Tip: Cherry Blossom Park
Visiting Amsterdam in Spring? Then make sure to include a trip to the Cherry Blossom Park (Kersenbloesempark) in the Amsterdamse Bos. It’s the perfect location to see the cherry trees blossom and take some amazing pics!
4. Go camping
While it is forbidden to camp in the forest, you can set up your tent at camping Het Amsterdamse Bos, located at the Bosrandweg in Amstelveen.
The campsite is close to a small lake named the Poel. Which is the ideal spot to soak up the sun and take a refreshing dive on a hot Summer day.
Dreaming of cuddling tiny cute baby goats? Well, then make sure you head over to Biodynamic Goat Farm Ridammerhoeve, situated in the middle of the forest, to check this off your bucket list.
5. Cuddle a goat
For a small contribution, you can bottlefeed the cute baby goats and tiny piglets that roam around the farm. Before you head home, make sure to enjoy the famous goat’s cheese and goat’s milk ice cream! YUM!
6. Rent a canoe or water bike
Discovering the Amsterdamse Bos by canoe is the perfect Summer day activity. Enjoy the tranquility of paddling through the water and take a plunge when you’re overheating from all the exercise.
ALSO READ The Perfect Amsterdam Summer Bucket List
You can rent a canoe or water bike at the edge of the Grote Speelweide, along the Grote Vijver. Kids from the age of four and up can play captain and steer their own electric boats at Miniport.
Getting hungry from all those activities? At Boerderij Meerzicht you can enjoy some very delicious pancakes, icecream, and coffee.
Make sure to say hello to all the cute animals and peacocks roaming around the yard. Kids can go nuts at the playground.
8. Go supping
Feeling balanced? Then you’ll love supping! Explore the waters of the Amsterdamse Bos while paddling on a surfboard. Once you get over the fear of falling off, you might find this a very relaxing experience!
You can book a sup tour with a guide in the Amsterdamse Bos on Sup My City.
9. Visit the Open-air Theatre
Want to enjoy a magical Summer night in the forest? Then make sure to visit a show at the Open-air Theatre. From July to August, the Amsterdamse Bostheater offers a wide variety of theatrical and musical performances for the whole family.
Make sure to bring your own blanket, a bottle of wine and bite to eat and enjoy a wonderful show in the middle of a forest.
10. Take a dive
The water in The Amsterdamse Forest is super clean and gives you the perfect refreshment on a hot summer day. You can find dedicated swimming areas along the Grote Vijver, close to the canoe rental.
The Groot Kinderbad and Klein Kinderbad are two outside paddling pools for young children. The pools are open from May to August/September. Kids can also enjoy the Speeleilanden, a group of playful islands where they can climb and jump in the water.
11. Go horseriding
The Amsterdamse Bos is ideal for horse riding, with many special routes for you and your four-legged friend.
There are two riding schools located in the park, on both ends of Nieuw Kalfjeslaan. Manege Nieuw Amstelland and De Amsterdamse Manage both offer the option to book a horse ride, under the condition you’re a good rider.
12. Take the ferry
Want to feel the wind in your hair? From April to September you can take a ferry around the Nieuwe Meer, a big lake at the edge of the Amsterdamse Bos.
Veerpont (ferry) Nieuwe Meer runs between the northern shores of the Nieuwe Meer (at Paviljoen Aquarius) and the Meerkade in the Amsterdamse Bos, behind Boerderij Meerzicht.
13. Discover Poel’s Up
At the edge of the Amsterdam Bos, you can find an actual pool floating in a lake. Huh? Yes, for real!
Outdoor swimming pool Poel’s Up is located in lake de Poel and is a great spot to cool down from the hot Summer sun. Dip your toes in the water while enjoying a sandwich and one of their special herbal teas.
14. Enjoy wellness in nature
Need some me-time? Spa Sport Hotel ZUIVER in the Amsterdamse Bos is the perfect place to relax and de-stress.
Surrounded by beautiful nature, you can pamper yourself with a wide variety of massages, beauty treatments, saunas, baths, a hammam, and delicious freshly prepared meals at the restaurant. You’ll feel reborn!
15. BBQ and Picnic Time!
The Amsterdamse Bos offers many gorgeous spots for a picnic. Bring your blanket and a basket full of yummy snacks and off you go!
While an open fire is forbidden, a barbecue grill is allowed in the Amsterdamse Bos. The most popular barbeque spots are located near the Grote Vijver.
What a great way to end an amazing day enjoying the gorgeous forest of Amsterdam!
ALSO READ Top 10 Things to do in Amsterdam
I wish you a wonderful time in the forest and can’t wait to hear all about it. Let me know your favorite things to do in the comments!