On the southern edge of the city, Amsterdam’s iconic neighbourhood De Pijp is possibly one of its most vibrant. From its inception the area was categorized as working-class and was largely populated by poor students, prostitutes and artists. During the 90’s its slow path to gentrification began; advertised as the ‘Quartier Latin’ of Amsterdam by wily real estate brokers, De Pijp soon started attracting young families and middle-class yuppies. Fortunately the area has managed to retain much of its original character and even features its own little Red Light District on Ruysdaelkade. With its working-class roots and move towards yuppiedom, the neighbourhood has amassed a very wide selection of bars, from achingly trendy spots to more cheap and cheerful drinking holes.
The Marie Heinekenplein definitely features the largest concentration of ‘kroegs’ in this area. But a short venture just across this square will bring you to Kingfisher Cafe on Ferdinand Bolstraat. A relaxed mix of students and young creatives, Kingfisher Cafe is a great spot to ease your way in to the evening. In summer enjoy sitting out on terrace with a ‘biertje’ (or two) as the sun goes down. In winter get cosy inside with the 50’s diner style decor and sounds of laid-back hip-hop and soul.
Moving away from Marie Heinekenplein, De Pijp’s Albert Cuypstraat (home to the famed market of the same name) is home to two of the area’s most fun, and arguably hippest bars. Cafe Toko may at first seem like a simple restaurant (that serves delicious steak) but after dinner the place transforms into a loud, smoky and boozy bar – if that’s your thing. For a more chilled out experience, Cafe Flamingo is just metres away on the corner of Eerste van der Helstraat and offers a more discerning and slightly less raucous crowd. Either prop yourself at the bar and peruse over the large selection of beer on offer, or hang out with the cool kids on the terrace.
If all of this is too much trendiness to handle, then Eddy Bar on Gerard Doustraat should be your next stop. A much loved
neighbourhood brown bar, if the slot machines and strong adoration of Dutch musical classics don’t keep you there, then the cheap prices definitely will. And in case you didn’t notice the André Hazes statue on Albert Cuypstraat on your way over, Eddy Bar’s devotion to this legendary Dutch folk singer will ensure you keep his spirit alive.
After all the bars have closed and you still feel like a nightcap, De Pijp’s late night bar Mazzeltof will keep you liquoured up till 5am on weekdays and 9am during the weekend. However, it’s not for the faint-hearted. Being one of the very few late night bars in Amsterdam, it can get very crowded very fast. And good luck fending off unwanted gropes from the drunk businessmen sitting at the bar.
While these are just a few options of good bars in De Pijp, there are of course many places that have been left out. De Pijp boasts the highest concentration of bars in Amsterdam so there’s a spot to suit everyone’s taste – perfect for a ‘gezellig’ bar-hop in Amsterdam.