Christmas and New Year are over, but the perfect way to cheer yourself up is to start thinking about your 2016 holiday. That’s why we’ve asked Accessible Travel Netherlands to put together a list of the top 10 favorite places and activities highly recommended for wheelchair users, either traveling with a group of friends, with kids or as a couple.
Amsterdam Canal Cruise
Certainly one of the highlights of the Dutch capital, its numerous canals will impress you! Can you think of a better way to explore them that an accessible canal tour? The canal cruise has several vessels with a lift on board. This lift allows people using a wheelchair to access the canal cruise boat. The width of the path between the seats on the boat is wide enough for wheelchairs and the door is a sliding door. A maximum of 4 wheelchairs or scooters are allowed on one canal cruise vessel.
Amsterdam Light Festival
Every year during the winter, Amsterdam gives another reason to include it in your destinations list – the Amsterdam Light Festival. It’s held this year from the 27th of November until the 17th of January 2016, but you can also plan ahead for next Christmas. During the festival, the city is full of light structures inspired by artists from all over the world. This year the theme of friendship will be celebrated, and for this theme we were promised to see Northern Lights above Amstel river. Don’t miss it!
Dine in Canvas
For those who wish to dine with an amazing view to the city, we would definitely suggest dining in Canvas, a rooftop restaurant and bar on the 7 th floor of Volkshotel. The restaurant is located south east of the center of Amsterdam and is fully accessible with an elevator and an accessible toilet on the ground floor. You can have breakfast, lunch or dinner there as the restaurant is open daily from 7am to 8pm. The combination of good food and the breathtaking view will for sure excite you.
The Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam is a museum dedicated to modern and contemporary art and design. The museum is fully accessible – you can rent a wheelchair, plus it allows foldable and standard mobility scooters in the building. Interesting art exhibitions, films and gallery talks make it one of the things you would not want to miss during your stay in Amsterdam.
Located in the heart of the city, Paradiso is an important music venue and cultural centre. The building itself is of historical importance, used as a church until 1965. Nowadays, the venue includes an eclectic range of programming including lectures, theatre plays and classical music. We highly recommend checking the events around your stay and book your tickets for one of them.
Amsterdam offers a wide variety of stores and malls for every budget, and lots of vintage finds. If shopping is in your to do list while in the city, how about visiting IJhallen, the largest flea market in Europe? Located in the Noord, the north of Amsterdam, this huge market is open twice per month. Books, clothes, shoes and decoration accessories, along with many more things, await for the visitors of the market. The place is accessible and you can easily reach it from Amsterdam taking one of the ferries that runs all day long behind the city’s central station.
Shopping in Rotterdam
Talking about shopping in the Netherlands, we cannot skip the market of one of the country’s bigger cities, Rotterdam. A visit to the city with the most modern architecture in the Netherlands always includes entering it’s numerous stores. We would specifically suggest spending some time in Koopgoot, a very popular shopping street. Wander around and find some bargains and surprise your friends with the gifts that you will bring home from your holidays.
The Hague, the third city of the Netherlands has a rich history and is often included in the travel plans of those who visit the Netherlands. You can learn about the architecture and history of the city that hosts the Parliament and the council of State with a tour of the Hague. Remember not to skip getting a glimpse of the lively beach in the centre.
Efteling is one of the best attractions when traveling with kids. It is a unique theme park that brings the fairy tales of your childhood to life. Apart from the many thrilling and more relaxing rides, you will also have the chance to experience seasonal festivities and events. The park also features many restaurants of different cuisines and great places to have a coffee. The park is accessible and also provides the possibility to reserve a wheelchair for your visit.
Accessible bike tour in Amsterdam
Explore Amsterdam with an adapted bike tour. This tour is accessible for a range of people because many different bikes can be used. For the tour, you can hire a Veloplus bike, Velopair bike, tricycle, Fun2Go bike and twin bike. It’s also possible to rent a Firefly, a motorised steering wheel with wheelchair. You can also attach the Firefly to your own wheelchair. Pick-up your bikes near Amsterdam Central Station, take the free ferry across the water and explore the North district of Amsterdam. After the guided tour and once you’re more experienced with the adapted bikes, you can take them into the city centre or Amsterdam’s green parks.
By Sotiria Prodromiti and Veroniek Maat
If you’re planning your next holiday, why not visit our new travel site, Accomable, to find accessible accommodation not just in the UK, but across the world.