With over seven Christmas Markets all over Amsterdam, there is sure to be something for everyone. For a fun twist on pieces made by local artists and fashion designers, visit the Funky Xmas Market. Amsterdamsche Kerstmarkt is great for gift buying because they have a lot to choose from and they gift wrap! Plus after a few hours of shopping you can relax with a glass of beer and enjoy live music. To really dive into the culture, take a 30 minute drive outside of Amsterdam to a town called Vreeland. Here, you will get a taste of rich culture and you can support local artisans by shopping the several stalls of handmade clothing, jewellery, cosmetics and kitchenware.
Another must-see when visiting Amsterdam over the holidays is the Amsterdam Lights Festival. In this show, all pieces are made exclusively for the show and artists submit their pieces to a jury who then pick the best to be shown. One part of the experience is the Water Exhibition which this year runs November 30th through January 21st. For this part of the exhibition, artists put their art on display to light up the canals. There are several companies who offer boat tours which is the best way to really see it all. There is also a Land Exhibition which runs December 14 through January 7th. For the first time, this year it will be held at Marineterrein Amsterdam which is walking distance from Amsterdam Central Station. There is no required route but guided tours are available. At the Land Exhibition they will also host talks with the artists for those who want to learn more about the art or the Festival itself.