From Amsterdam to Rotterdam and Soestdijk
3 March 2021
Petite Passport Walks is a new series of walks that combine the city’s highlights with my favorite spots to enjoy the city, support the local entrepreneurs and taste the best coffee, chocolate chip cookie or take-away pizza on your way.
Theme: Amsterdam-West. Enjoy a coffee in the park, enter a peaceful oasis at Prinseneiland and get lost in the Jordaan
Distance: nearly 7 kilometers
1. Let’s start our walk at Frederik Hendrikplantsoen and take the Kostverlorenstraat to the Van Hallstraat. We will begin with a coffee at Ao Bar (Van Hallstraat 97), but before we arrive take a look at the bridge control house on the Van Hallbrug. This is one of the bridge control houses of Sweets Hotel where you can spend the night. At Ao Bar people come from far to try their mille crepe matcha.
2. Continue your walk to Westerpark where you can drink your coffee and enjoy the sun. The Westergas once was a coal gas factory, but now they organize events such as Unseen in the Gashouder and in the nearby buildings you’ll find cafes, galleries, a cinema and they even produce Dutch television programs such as De Vooravond here.
3. Take the tunnel to the Zaandijkstraat and make your way to the Van Diemenstraat. You will first cross the Westerkeersluis with another bridge control house turned into a hotel room. On the Van Diemenstraat you’ll find restaurant BAK where they make ‘Easy Does it Dinner Packages’ during the lockdown. BAK is located in Het Veem, a former warehouse for luxury goods coming from the Dutch colonies. Nowadays artists/designers such as Jasper Krabbe and Job Wouters have their studios here.
4. If you take the Van Neckstraat make your way via the Petemayenbrug (funny fact: petemayen stands for godmother and has the nickname ‘the old women bridge’) to the beautiful Drieharingenbrug and you’ll enter Prinseneiland. The bridge is named after a house on Prinseneiland (Vierwindendwarsstraat 1) with a gable with three herrings.
5. Prinseneiland is a beautiful area to walk around and see all of the listed buildings that once were used as warehouses for products such as herring, anchovies, wine, tobacco and grain. I’ve noticed a former warehouse called INSULINDE which dates back to 1629 and has a gable with a man and the saying LACHEN (smiling) on it. It’s part of the building where artist Ans Markus now lives and is a design by (and the face of) Hans ‘t Mannetje. Vrede is another beautiful warehouse: and it’s located across the street from Delight Yoga.
6. Go to Palmentuin Prinseneiland, a small hidden garden with palmtrees made by the people who live on ‘the island’.
7. Walk via the Galgenbrug (Gallow Bridge – named like that as you could see the gallows on the other side of the river IJ from here in the 16th century) to the Bickersgracht. And then take to the tunnel underneath the train tracks and walk to the Haarlemmerdijk.
10. Go to the Brouwersgracht and enter the so-called Grachtengordel. The Brouwersgracht was once named the most beautiful street in Amsterdam. Take your time to see the canal houses – maybe you even notice three green deer on the roofs? Interesting to know is that the canal got its name because in the 16th century there were many beer breweries here.
11. Go to Libertine Petit Cafe for a coffee or French toast.
12. From here on we’re gonna explore de Jordaan. Just walk around and explore the beautiful streets. I took this photo from the Tweede Anjeliersdwarsstraat with a view of the beautiful Westerkerk. The Jordaan used to be a working class neighborhood, nowadays you almost pay 400k euros for a 50m2 apartment. There are several stories on how they came up with the name Jordaan, some think the French gave it their name. Jardin is garden in French and lots of the street names here are named after flowers. By researching after my walk I also found out you can visit a few of the hidden ‘hofjes’. One of them is Het Sint-Andrieshofje on Egelantiersgracht 105 – 141. Maybe worth checking out!
13. The end of our route brings us to our beginning point: Frederik Hendrikplantsoen.
Extra tip: don’t take this route too seriously. The best things are always reached if you use your intuition. So if you like to go left or right, just do it.
I hope you like this route! Share your pictures of your #ppwalks with me on Instagram. Plus also let me know if you find other fun/interesting facts to share! Love to see/hear what caught your eye.
Warm wishes, Pauline
Noordermarkt 44, 1015 NA Amsterdam, Netherlands