Hop-On Hop-Off Amsterdam’s Guide: The Worthy Choice for Commute?

Updated on:  
February 9, 2022
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Miriam Jaffe
Miriam Jaffe
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Before hopping on the hop-on-hop-off city tour buses in Amsterdam, let's make sure you're in the know of these critical pieces of information, including the different companies' routes and prices, so nothing will catch you off-guard!

We’ve talked a lot on this blog about Hop on Hop off tours, and their value when first arriving somewhere.

Whether it’s Paris, Berlin, Barcelona, or anywhere in between, these tours are a great way to easily get around a city and see some of the highlights.

If you’re looking to visit Amsterdam, great news, there are hop-on hop-off options available there! Not sure if that’s how you want to explore the city? No worries, read on to find out if you might want to hop on one of these tours in Amsterdam!

Bus tours of Amsterdam with great view.
Photo by Max van den Oetelaar on Unsplash

What is a Hop On Hop Off tour?

Hop on Hop Off bus tours do exactly what the name implies - they’re bus tours that allow you to hop on and off as many times as you’d like, as they make their way through a city. Unlike a regular commuter bus, though, hop-on hop-off style busses will take you straight to the famous landmarks, without you having to navigate the local public transport.

With so much to do in Amsterdam, it can be overwhelming to try and manage it all, and see all the sites efficiently - hop on hop off tours can help with that.

Tours typically operate on a set route, and you can either ride the bus through the whole circuit, get off at the sights that interest you, or do a combination of both. You can then hop back on when the next bus comes through. 

Another thing that differentiates hop on hop off busses from traditional busses is that there will frequently be pre-recorded commentary available. These will come in multiple languages so you don’t need to worry if you don’t speak the local language.

Buses sometimes also have open rooftop seating so you can get the best views as you cruise through the city. 

City sightseeing amsterdam bus hop on hop off.
Image Courtesy: City Sightseeing

Stops in Amsterdam

While Amsterdam isn’t as big as some other cities with extensive hop-on hop-off routes, that doesn’t mean you don’t have options. City Sightseeing offers what they deem “the best hop on hop off tour”. The tour has one route with ten stops that takes 65 minutes, with busses departing every 20 minutes. Audio guides are offered in 18 languages.

The tour is currently not running due to the pandemic but is set to start up again on March 1, 2022, so you can book your tickets anytime after that (tickets are valid for 12 months).

Here is the Amsterdam route: 

RED ROUTE (first bus leaves from stop 1 at 09:30, and last departs at 17:15)

  1. Central Station West/ Prins Hendrikkade
  2. Passenger Terminal Amsterdam
  3. Gassan Diamonds (Rembrandt House Museum, Waterlooplein Flea Market)
  4. Jewish Historical Quarter (Portuguese synagogue, Jewish Historical Museum, ARTIS Amsterdam Royal Zoo)
  5. Royal Theatre Carré
  6. Heineken Experience
  7. Museum District (Stedelijk Museum, Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum)
  8. Leidseplein/Vondelpark
  9. Jordaan/Westerpark (Noordermarkt, Anne Frank Huis)
  10. Westerdok

Your Hop On Hop Off ticket can be used for the duration of its validity, and you can hop on and off as many times as you like, providing there’s another bus coming.

While the bus doesn’t cover every monument or attraction in Amsterdam, you can get off at any of the several stops to explore the area. You can also use the bus to get you from one place to another before exploring further. Bus tickets do not include entry to any of the landmarks or attractions, though (however, if you purchase an Essential ticket, a boat tour will be included). 

Hop on hop off red route Amsterdam bus tours.
Image Courtesy: City Sightseeing

Ticket prices

If you’re interested in taking that Hop on Hop Off tour in Amsterdam, you’ll need to purchase tickets. City Sightseeing tickets are valid for twelve months, and valid any day. Their ticket prices have two categories, which are as follows:

Iconic - from $19.12

  • Tickets for 24/48h hop on hop off bus tour

Essential - from $22.59

  • Tickets for 24/48h hop on hop off bus tour
  • Boat tour

Route map

While we’ve provided you with all the stops on the red route, it might not mean much in purely a list format. If you’re looking to see it on a map, and where the City Sightseeing route will take you, look no further!

City sightseeing tour Amsterdam logo.
Image Courtesy: City Sightseeing

Hop on Hop off boat tours

With City Sightseeing’s Essential ticket, you’ll have access to a hop-on hop-off boat tour, but what does that entail? The boat tour has nine stops, all of which you can visit as you travel along the Amsterdam waterways.

The route takes two hours and five minutes to do a full loop, with boats arriving every 25 minutes. The first boat leaves at 09:30, and the last leaves at 18:00.

The stops are as follows:

  1. Central station West
  2. Passenger Terminal Amsterdam
  3. NEMO Science Museum
  4. Gassan Diamonds
  5. Amsterdam Icebar/Amstel
  6. Albert Cuyp Market
  7. Rijksmuseum
  8. Leidseplein
  9. Westermarkt/Anne Frank House

You can also download the City Sightseeing Amsterdam app to gain access to free GPS-guided walking tours! The starting point for those tours is the Anne Frank House, Café Karpershoek/Central Station, and Gassan Diamonds/Delft Blue Store.

Hop on hop off city sightseeing Amsterdam canal tour.
Image Courtesy: TripAdvisor

Visit Amsterdam with Pilot!

For the first visit to Amsterdam, a hop-on hop-off bus tour is a great way to get around the city in your first few days and to learn about Amsterdam while doing it. It’ll also get you to all the highlights of the city.

If you’re thinking of heading to Amsterdam and not sure where to stay, you can read about the most unique neighborhoods to help make your decision!

Even if Amsterdam isn’t on your travel bucket list, we still want to help you travel the world.

Did you know that Pilot has a travel app to help make your plans and itinerary? No? Not only that, you'll be able to plan trips and record all the things you want to do together with your close friends and family! Sign up here to give it a whirl, we know you want to try it!

Feel free to also subscribe to Flightdeck to get all of our tips and tricks straight to your inbox. 

Originally published on:  
September 30, 2021

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