Amsterdam is an amazing city, brimming with quirkiness and creativity, and bursting with stories to tell. On this In Focus tour, we're telling the story of multiculturalism in the Netherlands, both historically and in present day, via the experiences of diverse Amsterdammers. Not only will you walk away from your day with an in-depth understanding of local culture (and multiculturalism) here in Amsterdam, but you'll also discover some hidden highlights and learn about the unique work being done by a local arts organisation.
Your Amsterdam tour will begin in front of the Tropen Museum, a poignant place to start our tour given that we’ll be focusing on the cultural melting pot that is Amsterdam, and this space celebrates the people of the world and the wide-ranging cultures they have created.
We’ll make our way through the peace and quiet of Oosterpark and discuss why Amsterdam has always been such a popular choice of location in which for migrants to settle. The park is scattered with sculptures, several of which will directly relate to our conversation. ‘The Shout,’ for example, is a memorial to filmmaker Theo van Gogh and serves as a symbol of the importance of freedom of speech in the city.
We will arrive at a popular local shopping street and head straight for the local market. On the way, you’ll get to try some Turkish desserts, a neighbourhood must-have treat (and it’s on us!).
We will then spend time exploring some of the most exciting and diverse shops in the area and meeting the vendors themselves, including a grocer from Iraq and an elaborate haberdasher from Morocco. At the market, ask your guide to point out where you can find the kibbeling stand. These Dutch snacks consist of battered chunks of deep-fried fish, served with garlic mayonnaise or tartar sauce.
Next up, we walk through the trendy Indische Buurt neighbourhood, before taking the tram toward our next stop and the highlight of our tour. As we ride, we'll listen to some genuine tales from past and present migrants to the city, courtesy of our complimentary iPods.
To finish your Amsterdam tour, we will take a very special and exclusive behind-the-scenes look at a local foundation, Ondertussen, that provides studio space for both refugee and non-refugee artists, to promote cross-cultural engagement. The organisation's mission is to not only help bring artistic freedom to refugees, but to also include the refugee experience in the contemporary Dutch arts scene, and to encourage and embolden the cultural conversation in Amsterdam.
You will have the chance to hear personal stories from the artists themselves, who are using this historic space to produce and exhibit their art, helping them to make a life for themselves here in Amsterdam.
The tour ends here but if you want to continue your immersion into Dutch multiculturalism, the new Holocaust museum is next door (entrance fees at your own cost). Alternatively, ask your in-the-know guide for tips on where to explore next.
Inclusions: Local English-speaking guide, donation to Ondertussen, iPod rental for listening to the audio component of the tour, a treat in one of the local bakeries.
Exclusions: Additional food and drinks, souvenirs and personal shopping, tips/gratuities for your guide and any vendors or shop owners. Any artwork you wish to purchase to help further support the Ondertussen in the Kweekschool.
Dress standard: Please wear comfortable clothing and shoes for walking.
Your Trip: For your Urban Adventure you will be in a small group of a maximum of 12 people.
Confirmation of booking: If you have your voucher, your booking is confirmed. We'll see you at the start point. Get in touch if you have any concerns or require more information via the email address or phone number (business hours only) on your voucher.
Child Policy: Travellers aged 6 to 16 years of age are not permitted to join this tour. Infants and young children under the age of 6 can accompany adults on this tour free of charge.