Amsterdam vs Barcelona

May 20th, 2012, 10:11 AM
  #1  
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Amsterdam vs Barcelona

I have room in my itinerary for either 3 nights in Amsterdam or Barcelona. Which one should I visit?

I don't really know what's in Amsterdam that's worth seeing (red light district, anne frank museum?). In Barcelona, I really would like to see the Sagrada Familia and some of Antoni Gaudi's other architectural works. That's my main draw to Barcelona.

I will be traveling in July so I don't know if that plays into this decision at all. I assume there is 3 days worth of stuff to see in either city?
anom217 is offline  
May 20th, 2012, 10:15 AM
  #2  
 
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Either city would be lovely. I personally prefer Amsterdam. You can visit a number of museums (the Van Gogh is a favorite) and ride on a canal boat. People are much friendlier IMO in Amsterdam. It is easier to walk around this city center (or rent a bicycle). Everything is easy to get to. Trams are easy to ride.
simpsonc510 is offline  
May 20th, 2012, 10:18 AM
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What's the rest of your trip look like? Which city would better fit into your overall itinerary? Of course there is plenty to see and do in either place to fill 3 days. It seems like you're more interested in Barcelona from your post.
suze is offline  
May 20th, 2012, 10:20 AM
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If you are at ALL interested in one of the greatest art museums in the western world then the Rijksmuseum even in its under-renovation scaled down state would be a must for many. There is a lot more to the city than Anne Frank and the red light district.

However, since you seem to know more about Barcelona which is, I agree, a wonderful place with lots to see and do, why waste a lot of your own and everybody else's time? Simply go there and forget Amsterdam this time around..you're already convinced, right?
Dukey1 is offline  
May 20th, 2012, 10:23 AM
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both lovely
prefer Barcelona
danon is online now  
May 20th, 2012, 10:58 AM
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I also like Both Amsterdam and Barcelona a lot.

For July, it might be better to go to Amsterdam, as the weather should be very good. I was last there in a very chilly May.

The Museumplein holds three very good museums, Van Gogh, Stedelijk (modern art), and the Rijksmuseum (all the Dutch Masters - not the cigar).

It's just a lovely town to visit. Dam Square, canal tours, open air cafes, and so on.

We stayed at the Owl Hotel, www.owl-hotel.nl/ , which turned out to be a very good hotel. It's less than 5 minutes to the Leidesplein and less than 10 to the Museumplein.

A lot of trolley cars to get around are in the area, although Amsterdam is a walking and bicycle city.

Dutch people are very friendly, and the great linguists of Europe and it seems that everyone speaks English better than I do.

The only downside is that Dutch 'cafes' are now illegal for tourists.
Rastaguytoday is offline  
May 20th, 2012, 11:33 AM
  #7  
kit
 
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Amsterdam is very old and charming; Barcelona will feel very much newer and more cosmopolitan. Both are world-class cities and favorites of travelers. You can see a lot in three days in both places. You'll be happy with either decision.
kit is offline  
May 20th, 2012, 11:52 AM
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i too would pick Amsterdam as it is more compact and easy to get round on foot/bicycle as you only have three days. It is very charming, the people are friendly and some very pretty canal side cafes etc etc, I think in July it would be nice. There is a great walk ("Amsterdam in world war two" that i thought very worthwhile). We also liked the little beer bars and found some nice cafes and restaurants as well a lovely market near the Anne Frank House. We were there for 3 nights, did not see the red light district and found it a great little spot. It is a very clean city and the canals are lit up all pretty at night.

Barcelona will be VERY hot in July and is far wider spread. It is nice but it as people say a more cosmopolitan place that takes a while to navigate compared to Amsterdam. You could probably do with more than 3 days in Barcelona as is bigger. It of course had a city beach but it will be packed out in summer.
HG001London is offline  
May 21st, 2012, 04:54 PM
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Amsterdam wins for me - barcelona is lovely - but amsterdam is far more interesting - very old beautiful buildings - a coffee by the canal - beautiful people - far more to see and do - fight the urge for barcelona chose amsterdam - you wont regret it!
wilma3225 is offline  
May 21st, 2012, 05:53 PM
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"There is far more to see and do in Amsterdam than Barcelona"
I would disagree.
danon is online now  
May 22nd, 2012, 06:05 AM
  #11  
ira
 
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Hi an,

Would you like chocolate or vanilla?
ira is offline  
May 22nd, 2012, 06:33 AM
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With only 3 days,Amsterdam.I like them both but love Amsterdam. Ira is right!
HappyTrvlr is offline  
May 22nd, 2012, 06:43 AM
  #13  
 
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I think you have already made up your mind and are just looking for confirmation that you have made the right choice.
Why did you decide Amsterdam was a possibility if you know nothing about the city.
Maybe you should do a bit more research before finally making up your mind.

Rastaguytoday, Dutch coffeeshops are not yet closed to foreigners in Amsterdam, only those in Limburg, Brabant and Zeeland. As of January 1st 2013 all visitors to coffeeshops will need a "Wietpas". If the new government doesn't change the rules in the meantime.

Cafe's are just that - cafés selling coffee and food.
hetismij2 is offline  
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