The latest up-and-coming bohemian part of town, De Pijp ("The Pipe") was named for its once-dirty, narrow streets and even narrower houses. At the end of the 19th century, this was a low-income neighborhood for workers, with cheaply built housing to match. Many streets here are named after painters, including the main thoroughfare, Ferdinand Bolstraat, who was one of Rembrandt's pupils. In the 1890s the low rents here attracted poor families, market hawkers, students, artists, and all types of radicals, which earned the neighborhood a comparison to Paris's Latin Quarter. The Heineken Brewery attracted the first Spanish guest workers to the neighborhood during the early 1960s and, later, waves of guest workers from Turkey and Morocco and citizens from the former colonies of Suriname and Indonesia revitalized the area around Albert Cuypstraat with (much-needed) culinary diversity. By the 1980s, De Pijp was a truly global village, with more than 126 nationalities to be found. Construction for a new subway line (due to be completed by 2017) has literally ripped through this area, though it's still a great place for inexpensive international restaurants and local bars and cafés. Dinner here, with an hour or so wandering before and a bit of bar hopping after, is a good way to get a taste of the neighborhood, or else you might visit the Albert Cuypmarkt in the morning followed by lunch or a picnic in Sarphatipark.
Not everyone has the courage to explore these macabre destinations. Do you?More