Amsterdam with young toddler

Mar 30th, 2015, 10:19 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 12
Amsterdam with young toddler

My husband is speaking at a conference in Amsterdam the end of June, and our son and I will be traveling with him. Son will turn 14 months while there, so he's a young toddler. Are there any toddler-friendly things we should be sure to do? We were in Amsterdam two years ago, so we're not as concerned about hitting the "highlights" as we are making this a fun family trip. We'll have seven full days (including the jet lag arrival day) and will probably aim for one sight and afternoon play time in Vondelpark each day.
beaumontsc is offline  
Mar 30th, 2015, 11:12 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
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You may know of it - a great place for kids to place whilst moms sit in the outdoor cafe. In Vondel Park.
PalenQ is offline  
Mar 30th, 2015, 02:36 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
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Also in the Vondelpark there's a shallow pool especially for younger children: excellent when the weather is nice. It's ankle deep, but there's no official supervision. The City does check water quality though and it's regularly cleaned.

Also a nice park with a lot of playgroundy things is Sarphatipark and I used to take my son to Westermarkt a lot. It's on a canal and if you get a coffee to go from a nearby cafe you can sit and sip and play.

And for the ultimate Amsterdam beach experience, take tram 21 and head to Blijburg at the newish IJburg development.

If the weather is of the traditional Dutch summer type, maybe Tunfun is an idea

Will you be taking a stroller? I used to take my som in a child carrier (backpack type with an internal frame) he liked to look at lots of things and I liked to walk, so I walked a lot in Amsterdam, and he had his visual fix too. His highlight always was watching the trains come and go at Central Station. Your son's mileage may vary

and for google translate:

for all events you can filter by age category.
menachem is online now  
Mar 31st, 2015, 10:13 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 12
Thanks to you both!

menachem - I am not planning to take a stroller. I have a carrier we use for travel. He's just as happy in it as a stroller. I also enjoyed walking Amsterdam when there before, so I plan to do the same this trip. Thanks for the train idea! He's not seen anything like that before, so if he loves watching the trams, we might upgrade to trains by the end of the week. Any particular place that is good? We were only in Centraal Station briefly on our last trip, and I don't remember much of the station itself.
beaumontsc is offline  
Mar 31st, 2015, 11:04 AM
Join Date: Jul 2004
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I liked the carrier too when my son was that small. It made me much more mobile and he loved the motion. Walks with lots of mini breaks kept him happiest and it wasn't even that much of a hassle to take the tram.

At Central station Platform 2b is good, because there's the 1e Klas restaurant for good coffee and civilized surroundings with fast service. People are very tolerant of children in restaurants and cafes and such and won't be fazed much if your son gets a bit vocal (so to speak).

I just put my son in his carrier next to me on a bench so we were at the same eye level. I have to confess that he was quite fixated on trains. The cool thing about Central Station is that it's a through station, so trains are coming in and going very frequently. So there's a lot to see.

And if the weather is nice, do check out the Hortus Botanicus: beautiful plants in cast iron framed hothouses and a lovely cafe.

A heritage of the 1960s is that architect Aldo van Eyck created lots of small playgrounds in the city center. These were meant to create many opportunities for unsupervised play in town. If you walk about a bit and look for them, you'll start seeing them everywhere. I used to have my favorite routes from playground to playground. There's always a bench where you can sit and often a sand pit or such. Soft tiles usually too and the ubiquitous "wipkip".

And finally, on Weteringplantsoen, behind the Pancake place, there's the oldest playground in the Netherlands, UJ Klaren:

They've done some extensive re-landscaping, and are opening for the new season on May 30th, so it's all brand new when you guys are in Amsterdam.
menachem is online now  

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