Amsterdam’s Best Waterside Bars

Amsterdam’s best bars by the water

Amsterdam is a city with over 100km of canals and although water flows through these historic waterways, beer flows alongside them too! On a sunny day, having a beer by the water is one of the best ways to spend an afternoon, and Amsterdam has heaps of great bars from historic canal side brown cafés to hipster waterfront hangouts with sand and hammocks. 
It doesn’t matter if you are here with family friends or even on a amsterdam bachelor party, you are guaranteed to enjoy our waterside bars.

Here, we take you through some of the best waterside bars in Amsterdam… 


When the sun comes out, Waterkant is probably the most popular and buzzing spot in the city. The beautiful waterside location, great cocktails and huge beer selection (served alongside delicious surinamese-inspired food!) makes this one of the most well-loved hangouts in the city for locals. 


Roest is a really cool place based on a brilliant concept in Amsterdam Noord. This industrial space has a beachfront, market, great food and drinks and a beautiful, chilled-out vibe. They have some good DJs playing at the weekend, and if you’re venturing across the water, Roest is worth checking out. 

Café de Jaren 

Café de Jaren is a beautiful, spacious café with a large jetty and terrace in the centre of Amsterdam. It’s the perfect place to enjoy some top-quality food and drinks next to the River Amstel. Although for the purposes of this blog, the wonderful terrace is the main draw, Café de Jaren is also a great spot on a rainy day, with its light and airy interior, with high ceilings. 


Want to enjoy some sun, sand and a cocktail but don’t have time to head to the beach? Pllek is the answer. This cool bar is situated on a man-made beach and although it’s only a short trip across the water from Amsterdam Centraal, Pllek feels a million miles away from the bustle of the city centre. There are even some hammocks to chill in, making Pllek the perfect spot for a lazy day in the sun! 

Cafe t’ Smalle 

For a traditional Amsterdam brown café with a canal-side terrace, look no further than Café t’ Smalle. This historic bar with its old-fashioned décor was originally opened as a distillery by Peter Hoppe. In addition to the usual beer taps, this bar has a unique tap for spirits as well.

Casa Rosso

This world famous Amsterdam sex show is located right on the Oudezijds Achterburgwal, one of the red light district main canals. Besides the adult entertainment Casa Rosso also has a bar where drinks are pored all night (and day) long. So you can sit back, take a sip and enjoy the show.

Want to take things up a gear and get on the water for a drink!? Check out these booze-fuelled boat cruises…

If having drinks on the water, rather than just by it, sounds like your thing (and when we say drinks, we mean drinks – this cruise includes unlimited beer, wine and soda!), why not check out the Amsterdam Booze Cruise.? You can find out more about this unique way of taking waterside drinking up a gear, here

Or for the morning after the night before, check out a Hangover Cruise! 

If you’ve had a perfect evening drinking happily by the canalside, and are feeling a bit sore the next morning, a Hangover Cruise can be a great way to shake off the headache whilst seeing the best of the city sights.

 Looking for some beers to enjoy by the canalside? Check out our partners at We Are Amsterdam’s blog on beers you must try whilst visiting the city!