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Wondering about the safety in the Red light District (RLD)?

The answer is it’s fairly safe: Though keep your wits about you (as you need to in every foreign city). Keep in mind that most of the people walking around in the RLD are curious wanderers like yourself. Just leave your wallet and credit card at home. Better safe than sorry, right? Even so I walked around this area with two male friends and that gave me a more secure feeling. Oh and an important note: As tempting as it may be, leave your cameras in your daypacks. Some of these ladies tempers can be as red hot as the district itself!

Drugs >> You will most likely be approached by ‘dealers’ selling anything from XTC to Viagra. Just keep on walking and ignore them, they will stop pestering you that way. Never buy anything from these guys as you’re asking to be ripped off.

Casa Rossa >> High quality sexshow for € 25.
Banana Bar >> sexshow involving intriguing tricks with fruit from € 40. >> Several peepshows and videocabins € 2

Hostels Amsterdam The Red light District

Amsterdams Red light District , Hot or Not

Windows with hookers and tulips behind it, pimps wearing clogs and drug dealers riding bikes? The Dutch Red Light District is known all over the world. But what’s really there to see & where should you go?

Besides enormous bouncers, prostitutes and some crazy people the district is full of great bars, coffee shops and small restaurants. Next to this you’ll find a condom shop (Condomerie ‘t Gulden Vlies) filled with useful, funny and tasteful condoms together with a hooker-union and much more. Take a look at Amsterdam’s oldest church and step into a Buddhist temple to pray with bold monks for your inner peace.
The Red Light is located right in the centre of town, south/east from Amsterdam Central Station (see map, page 8). Around 1200, these tiny alleys were the first streets and canals which started the city of Amsterdam!

Let’s go!
Make your way to the Damrak, hurry! Can you see the Grasshopper coffee shop right in front of you? This is it, turn into this street. Wait! Already stoned? X large pizza’s and ultra sweet donuts are for sale all around you, so go ahead and satisfy your munchies here. Continue on, while chewing away the last of your munchies purchases and you’ll find an old Amsterdam house with huge, screaming red neon letters in front of you; S E X S H O P.
Welcome to the Red Lights! Now turn left or right, either way the wider streets will offer food, adult video’s, various ‘adult’ tools, jumping vibrators in different funny shapes and sex seeking eyes check-ing you out… from faded posters on the walls.

To see the real thing you’ll have to take the smallest alleys. Window to window you‘ll find la-dies here in almost absent lingerie knocking on their windows to get the men’s attention. If you keep on heading east from here you’ll end up at Oudekerks plein. Look left to spot Amsterdam’s oldest church built in 1270 (Opening hours: 11.00-17.00). Look to the right and hurrah, ladies again! Every different part of the Red Light District is home to a certain ‘type of women’.

There’s Barndesteeg, home to the She-males or the area close to the church which is the territory of the African ladies. The Asian ladies also have their own section where an extra quality is presented; promising Thai massages…A little further into the area you’ll come across ‘La vie en Rose’ in the Bethlemsteeg which basically is an ‘indoor’ alley. Enter and you can walk around, do some ladies window shopping and leave again (or make your choice and spent 20 minutes with a lady behind closed curtains). You’ll see their beds, smell the air-refreshener and might bump into a leaving customer. This is as close as you can get to a Red Light District’s hooker’s life (That is unless you decide to pay one of the lovely ladies).

Besides window shopping there are also sex- and peep shows presented everywhere. For only €2 you can dug into one of the theatres and see some live action. You can rent a private cabin for 4 minutes to witness the show or to watch different video screens (You name it, you’ll see it).


The Red Light District finishes at the Zeedijk. Hey wait, it’s not time to head home yet! This is also thé place for great & cheap food and some typically Dutch pubs (Café Oostwest, 85; de Engel van Amsterdam, no. 21). Want to meet a real, lo-cal, Amsterdam Dutchie? Visit one of these bars to find yourself surrounded by; Dutch curtains, Dutch carpets on the tables, very Dutch music and the famous Dutch beers off course. It doesn’t get any Dutcher than this! Had as much a culture shock as you can handle, Café lime (104) is a beautiful hip lounge bar with seventies furniture and very tasty cocktails. Next to this, the square at the end of the Zeedijk is surrounded by café’s and bars. The Rembrandt square might be there for the tourists, this Nieuwmarket square is there for the Dutch! You’ll find different bars with different vibes: Café Cuba breaths a Latin feeling (more cocktails), Café ‘t Loosje has loads of good beers and features ‘rock’ music and Café Fonteyn is thé student hangout serving great sandwiches..

Wherever you go no matter what happens, your night has to end in the notorious San Francisco Bar at Zeedijk 40. Expect nothing and you’ll get everything. In the morning you can start stumbling back to your hostel bed. You’ve been to Amster-dam…Red Lights…Tell everyone about it or never tell a soul, but come again. Because with its red lights, bright sights, green grass, great hash, Dutch beer and relaxed atmosphere Amsterdam is definitely HOT! (Except in winter, haha)


Walki Talki'A'dam Red Light District audio tour' Hostels Amsterdam and Walki-Talki provide a FREE audio tour...

Take an hour-long walking tour along one of Amsterdam’s oldest parts: The red light district. An audio guide provided by Walki-Talki, loaded onto an mp3-player will inform you about all the ins and outs about this historical and fun part of the city. You can download the tour for free when you made a booking though this website.

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