Best Coffee Shops in Amsterdam in 2024

Take a Trip to the Coffee Shop Capital of the World and Find the Best Spots in Our Guide

Step into the aromatic world of Amsterdam’s best coffee shops, where the rich scent of freshly brewed coffee and the best weed beckons! Whether you’re a curious tourist or a seasoned local, these spots are part of everyday life in the Dutch capital.

But with so many options, we understand that choosing the best coffeeshop to visit can be challenging. To help guide your way, we’ve compiled the following information full of valuable tips for an unforgettable Amsterdam coffeeshop experience. Get ready for an adventure that’ll leave you energized and eager for more!

What is a Coffee Shop in Amsterdam?

Intrigued by Amsterdam’s coffee shops? You’re not alone! But while they are a delightful peculiarity of Dutch life, these aren’t your typical caffeine pit-stops. In Amsterdam, the term ‘coffeeshop’ refers to a licensed establishment where purchasing and consuming cannabis is permitted. From local residents to wide-eyed tourists, these shops welcome a diverse crowd, blending cultural exchange with a laid-back ambiance.

And whether you’re eager to enjoy a soothing smoke, savor an edibles-laden’ space cake,’ or simply soak up the distinctive atmosphere, Amsterdam coffeeshops deliver an experience like no other. But remember, while embodying the city’s famed liberal spirit, these shops adhere to strict Dutch government regulations, emphasizing responsible usage. So educate yourself on their laws and enjoy responsibly!

The Best Coffee Shops in Amsterdam

Without further ado, here are the best coffee shops to visit when in the Dutch capital

  1. 01

    Original Dampkring: The World Famous Dutch coffeeshop

    Café in De Wallen
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    The first coffee shop on our list is the Original Dampkring, a pillar of Amsterdam’s coffeeshop culture. This hotspot is famed not just for its remarkable array of weed, including strains like Ceres Hilton and Mexican Haze, but also for its delicious coffee and homemade teas. With a cool, eclectic decor and a dash of Hollywood glamor – thanks to a visit from Brad Pitt and George Clooney during the filming of Ocean’s Twelve – Dampkring offers an excellent taste of Amsterdam’s dynamic, cannabis-imbued lifestyle.

  2. 02

    Bulldog the first - One of the oldest Coffee Shops in Amsterdam

    Café in Red light District
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    For our cannabis-forward visitors, Bulldog The First is actually the longest-running coffee shop of its type in the city.

    It was founded in 1974 – before cannabis was legal – and has been built up as a shrine to Amsterdam weed culture. Due to its location in the Red-Light District, it is often quite busy on the weekends.

  3. 03

    Coffeeshop Solo: A Tranquil Retreat near Dam Square

    Café in Dam Square
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    Located a stone’s throw from Dam Square, Coffeeshop Solo is the secret escape you didn’t know you needed. Resembling an old-school Dutch pub, it offers an intimate neighborhood feel. But with a capacity of only 15 patrons, this coffee shop guarantees privacy and relaxation in the heart of the city. Not to mention, they have the friendliest wait staff who really make you feel at home. And although the prices are slightly above average, the serene atmosphere and personalized service make every visit this Coffeeshop in Amsterdam well worth the cost.

  4. 04

    Barney's Amsterdam

    Café in Amsterdam Canal Belt
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    Barney’s Coffeeshop is a vintage gem that blends old-world charm with first-rate cannabis service. Its quirky aesthetics and friendly staff, set against the backdrop of a 16th-century building, serve up a unique smoking experience. Renowned for its award-winning strains like Laughing Buddha and Liberty Haze, Barney’s offerings may come at a slightly higher price, but they’re worth every penny. Located in the northern borders of De Wallen, it’s within easy walking distance from the Amsterdam Central station, making it a must-visit stop on your Amsterdam itinerary.

  5. 05

    Green House United: An Exotic Underwater Experience

    Café in IJ Waterfront
    Coffee Shop Green House Amsterdam
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    At Green House United, also known as Green House Centrum, be ready to dive into a unique experience that combines the surreal with the sublime. This one-of-a-kind coffeeshop brings the exotic underwater world right under your feet with its in-floor aquarium. Nestled in central Amsterdam on the Oudezijds Voorburgwal canalside, the Green House is your gateway to some of the world’s best strains, including the famous Super Silver Haze. Whether you’re here for the cannabis, the tunes, the relaxing vibe, or just a drink, Green House United is a trove of memorable experiences.

  6. 06

    Amnesia: A Swanky Riverside Retreat

    Café in Amsterdam Canal Belt
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    Amnesia takes you away from the city’s buzz and into a relaxing riverside haven. Its luxurious red decor, plush cushions, and tranquil canal-side terrace are a refreshing treat for Amsterdam locals and tourists alike. Known for its potent pre-rolled joints and space cakes, Amnesia also offers an exciting range of milkshakes and smoothies to quench your thirst. Enjoy a sunny day on the summer terrace overlooking the canal or cozy up inside the high-end interior. With friendly staff, great food, and competition-winning cannabis strains, Amnesia leaves you with memories of an unforgettable Amsterdam experience.

  7. 07

    Grey Area: Legendary Coffee Shop in the City Center

    Café in Amsterdam Canal Belt
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    Step into the heart of the city to discover Grey Area, an iconic coffeeshop known for hosting world-renowned weed connoisseurs like Willie Nelson and Snoop Dogg. This cozy and intimate space boasts an array of top-tier marijuana options, including the highly sought-after Grey Mist Crystals and Bubble Gum strains. With an ambiance of warmth amplified by a chill music selection, the American owners ensure a high standard of customer service. Although small, the shop has carved a big reputation, which is evident in its trophy cabinet featuring the Amsterdam High Times Cannabis Cup. So, be patient for your turn; it’s absolutely worth the wait!

  8. 08

    Abraxas: An Established Red Light District coffeeshop

    Café in Dam Square
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    Nestled in a secluded small alley near Dam Square, Abraxas offers a spacious layout contrasting with the city’s typically compact coffee shops. Its mystical motifs and carved wooden furniture add to the enchanting experience as you explore its diverse offerings, including the world-class White Widow strain. This well-established coffee shop, dating back to 1992, has attracted a dedicated following with its unique atmosphere and variety of pre-rolled selections. Whether you choose to unwind on the ground floor or escape upstairs to the lounge, Abraxas ensures a memorable retreat within the vibrant red-light district.

  9. 09

    La Tertulia: A New Age Vibe in Affluent Jordaan District

    Café in Jordaan
    230216125845001 (1)
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    Embrace the New Age ambiance of La Tertulia, a family-run coffee shop nestled within the prosperous Jordaan district. With its inviting aura heightened by crystals on display and an indoor waterfall, this Amsterdam coffee shop offers bio buds along with a wide assortment of bongs and vaporizers. Perhaps the best part is that here you can satisfy your munchies with a choice of 15 sandwiches and enjoy the breathtaking canal views from the upstairs room or terrace. Whether you’re an Amsterdam local or a wandering tourist, La Tertulia provides a tranquil space for some great people-watching.

  10. 10

    420 Cafe: Casual Charm in the Heart of Damrak

    Café in De Wallen
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    Though it’s one of the lesser-known coffee shops, the 420 Cafe earned a well-deserved spot on our list of the best coffeeshops in Amsterdam. Stepping inside, you’ll be greeted by a warm, wood-accented decor and carefully curated eclectic music selection, setting the perfect vibe for your visit. But what sets this place apart are its delectable space cakes, known for their tantalizing flavors of lemon and chocolate. Beyond that, this cafe boasts an enticing range of grass, pre-rolled joints, hash, and edibles, catering to a diverse array of preferences and tastes. Trust us! As iconic Bob Marley and Frank Zappa tunes fill the air, you’ll find yourself far from the worries of life.

  11. 11

    Bluebird in Amsterdam

    Café in Amsterdam Old City
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    Just off the beaten track, the jungle-themed Bluebird attracts both local people and tourists alike. This hidden gem features exotic bird motifs and a trippy décor, providing a unique backdrop for its extensive menu. From smoking options to Dutch pancakes topped with whipped cream, Bluebird has something for everyone. However, be ready for a crowd, especially on weekends, thanks to its prime location in the eastern Red Light District. It’s also worth mentioning that you need to adhere to its strict joint-rolling rules. But if you do so, you’re sure to enjoy this trippy hideaway.

  12. 12

    Boerejongens: High-Class Service in a Central Location

    Café in Amsterdam Oud-West
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    Distinguished for its professional, high-end service, Boerejongens is a favorite among Amsterdam’s coffee shops. With bright interiors, marble counters, and staff sporting white lab-like attire, this venue exudes an upscale vibe while providing an extensive range of naturally cultivated herbs, including the acclaimed White Shoko and Super Silver Haze strains. Among its other standout features are the attractively presented, delectable space cakes available in a variety of flavors. Whether you choose to visit the original location on Utrechtsestraat or the West Amsterdam branch on Baarsjesweg, a visit to Boerejongens promises to be a high-end weed experience.

  13. 13

    Katsu: The Comforting Artistry of a Scenic District

    Café in De Pijp
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    Steeped in bohemian grace, Katsu is a heart-warming blend of artistry and relaxation. Its welcoming aura, infused with an air of a cozy living room, beckons both smokers and non-smokers alike. Wander through the art-laden lounge or bask in the sun-kissed terrace, and you’ll find a soothing corner to melt away your time. Nestled in the scenic neighborhood of de Pijp, Katsu’s tranquility complements the beauty of Amsterdam’s southern canal belt. Renowned for being one of the quieter coffee shops in the city center, Katsu is an emblem of peace amidst the excitement of the Dutch capital.

  14. 14

    Coffeeshop Smokey: The Neon Wonderland for Cannabis Connoisseurs

    Café in Amsterdam Old City
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    Enthralled in a fusion of neon allure and vibrant acoustics, Coffeeshop Smokey stands out as an unmissable emblem of Amsterdam’s dynamic coffee shop scene. Crafted to captivate the spirited tourist, it holds the key to an exhilarating party atmosphere. The impressive smoking lounge, one of the city’s largest, boasts three full-size pool tables and a wealth of comfortable seating. So, if you crave a radiant environment for mingling with fellow weed enthusiasts, the high energy of Coffeeshop Smokey is your perfect starting point.

  15. 15

    Paradox: A Serene Retreat with Historic Charm

    Café in Jordaan
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    Housed in a charming former fire department stable, Paradox is an oasis of calm in Amsterdam’s buzzing coffee shop scene. Its welcoming and friendly atmosphere, which is reminiscent of a homely neighborhood café, invites stoners who prioritize quality over quantity. Yet, what sets this coffee shop apart is that it offers an array of seven meticulously selected weed strains and six varieties of hashish. Paradox is also famed for its potent space cakes, each meticulously laced with a full gram of weed. Nestled in an unassuming location, this tranquil coffee shop truly embodies the paradox in its name – a serene sanctuary amidst the bustling city.

The Best Coffe Shops Walking Tours in Amsterdam

Do you want to get up close and personal with the culture of the Coffee Shops in Amsterdam? These Walking Tours offer an immersive experience in a culture so unique and exclusive to Amsterdam. The idea of a coffee shop, where the consumption of cannabis was legalized, was once seen as unacceptable by many other capitals of the world. However, the Coffee Shops in Amsterdam have established themselves and have become very popular. Today celebrities, tourists and locals visit the famous (and historic) Coffee Shops.

On Budget

Red Light District Tour in English

My Recommendation

Cultural Ganja Walking Tour of Coffee Shops

Red Light District & Coffee Shop Tour

Red Light District Coffee Tours

Food Amsterdam Tour

Red Light District & Coffee Shop Tour in Amsterdam



1,5 Hour

2 Hours

2 Hours



German, English

Dutch, English, Spanish, German

German, Spanish, English, Dutch



City Tax

Portion of Bitterballen




26 EUR

35 EUR

37 EUR


The details of each of the Coffee Shops Walking Tours in Amsterdam

Each Coffee Shops Walking Tour can offer you a detailed insight into the history of the Coffee Shops. Choose your favorite and book in advance.

  1. Tour Rotlichtviertel in Amsterdam auf Deutsch

    01 Red Light District Tour in English

    Discover the curiosities of the Red Light District in Amsterdam in English. In addition to a complete Walking Tour that shows you the main sights of the neighborhood, you will also learn all about the culture of the Coffee Shops in Amsterdam. The Red Light District tour takes place in a small group and you will learn stories, facts and information that you would not discover on a walk through the district on your own. The English-speaking tour through the Red Light District has a limited number of participants, so book in advance.

  2. Food Amsterdam Tour

    02 Amsterdam: Cultural Ganja Walking Tour of Coffee Shops

    Embark on a 2.5-hour journey exploring Amsterdam’s renowned coffee shop culture. This tour, priced from 40 EUR per person, offers a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the world of cannabis, learn to roll a joint and visit some of the city’s finest coffee shops. All while your knowledgeable local guide provides insight into the city’s drug policies and cannabis hotspots. Enjoy the experience alongside other cannabis enthusiasts, making it an ideal option for solo travelers or groups of friends. However, please note that this tour is not suitable for individuals under 18.

  3. Amsterdam, coffee shop

    03 Coffee shop and Red Light District tour in Amsterdam

    Do you want to learn more about the hedonistic party culture in Amsterdam? Then this beautiful walking tour of Amsterdam’s Red Light District is for you! With a local guide, you’ll stroll through the city’s historic alleys and understand how and why Amsterdam got its reputation as a liberal city towards sex and drugs. Along the way, you’ll be able to poke holes in the guide and hear from a local about the cultural significance of the Coffee Shops in Amsterdam as well as learn more about the lives of the sex workers who wait for their next clients in the neighborhood’s infamous red-lit windows. I find it all super exciting and I’m sure you do too!

Your Guide to Amsterdam Coffee Shop Etiquette: Dos and Don’ts

Visiting one of Amsterdam’s iconic coffee shops for the first time can be a unique and somewhat perplexing experience, especially for those unfamiliar with the local norms and traditions. Thus, understanding the etiquette of these establishments is essential to enjoy your experience to the fullest and to ensure a respectful interaction with both the staff and fellow coffeeshop patrons. So, here are some practical dos and don’ts to guide you through your Amsterdam coffee shop journey:

  • Do Respect the Age Limit: In Amsterdam, you must be 18 years old to enter a coffee shop, and you are required to present a valid ID to prove your age. Whether you’re a local resident or a tourist, these rules apply across the board, and there’s zero flexibility.
  • Don’t Use Tobacco Inside: Due to Dutch health regulations, tobacco smoking is strictly forbidden inside coffee shops. However, most shops provide herbal mixtures as a tobacco substitute for mixing with cannabis. If you prefer using tobacco, you’ll have to use the outdoor seating areas, where smoking tobacco is typically allowed.
  • Do Buy Something: The bottom line is that coffee shops are businesses. While they offer a relaxed environment to enjoy, it’s essential to purchase something—be it a drink, food, or marijuana. Most establishments frown upon the idea of ‘window smoking,’ which is the act of smoking weed you purchased elsewhere on their premises.
  • Don’t Over-Indulge: Especially if you’re a novice, take it slow. Dutch weed is potent, and the effects might be more powerful than what you’re used to. The locals recommend starting with a small amount and waiting for about an hour to see how you feel before taking more.
  • Do Ask for Help: The ‘budtenders’ are not only there to serve you; they’re also knowledgeable about the various strains of cannabis, their effects, and the best choices for novices or seasoned users. In other words, feel free to ask them about the cannabis menu – they’ll be happy to assist.
  • Don’t Hog a Table: Coffee shops can be crowded, especially during peak hours. If you notice people waiting and you’ve finished your joint or meal, it’s polite to free up your spot. Remember, these establishments also function on the café principle, where you share the space with other patrons.
  • Do Be Discreet: Even though cannabis is tolerated in these establishments, it’s essential to be discreet about its use. Don’t consume marijuana conspicuously in the vicinity of the coffee shop or smoke marijuana in public areas, as it’s disrespectful and, in some cases, illegal.
  • Don’t Bargain: When you buy cannabis in Amsterdam coffee shops, the prices are fixed, and bargaining is generally viewed as disrespectful. If you’re on a tight budget, ask the budtender for a recommendation within your price range.
  • Do Enjoy the Experience: Lastly, remember to relax and savor the experience. Whether you’re there to enjoy a coffee, indulge in a pastry, or explore the world of Dutch cannabis, each coffeeshop has its great atmosphere and unique vibe. From the artsy realms of Katsu to the neon wonderland of Coffeeshop Smokey or the serene retreat of Paradox, there’s a coffee shop to suit every mood and preference.

Being aware of these dos and don’ts will help ensure that your Amsterdam coffeeshop experience is an enjoyable one. The city’s coffee shop culture is one of its most intriguing aspects, offering an inviting space for visitors and locals to relax, socialize, and explore an extensive selection of good smoke. Respect for the rules and the patrons who visit coffeeshops will allow you to fully immerse yourself in this unique facet of Amsterdam’s vibrant city life.

FAQs: Amsterdam Coffee Shops

Can tourists still go to Amsterdam coffeeshops?

As of now, tourists can still go to Amsterdam coffeeshops. Despite discussions about implementing a “Weed-pass” law in 2013 to restrict access to residents only, the mayor of Amsterdam made a different decision, allowing tourists to continue visiting these establishments. With approximately 5 million tourists visiting Amsterdam each year, and many of them visiting the city’s famous coffeeshops, there’s no wonder why the mayor made this decision.

What is an actual coffee shop called in Amsterdam?

In Amsterdam, a traditional coffee shop, which does not sell weed, is simply called a “café.” These cafés offer a variety of coffee, tea, refreshments, and often light meals. Unlike cannabis-selling coffee shops, traditional cafés focus on providing a relaxed environment for customers to enjoy their beverages and socialize.

Why are Amsterdam dispensaries called coffeeshops?

Amsterdam dispensaries are called “coffeeshops” due to historical reasons. In the 1970s, the Netherlands adopted a pragmatic approach to cannabis, decriminalizing its possession and allowing its sale in licensed establishments. These licensed establishments were initially referred to as “coffeeshops” as they were envisioned as places where people could gather, socialize, and consume cannabis in a controlled environment, much like enjoying a cup of coffee. Over the years, the name “coffeeshop” has remained in use, becoming synonymous with places where one can legally buy and consume marijuana products in Amsterdam.

What is the difference between a café and a coffee shop in Amsterdam?

In Amsterdam, a café primarily serves coffee, tea, and beverages, often accompanied by light meals and snacks. In contrast, a coffee shop is a licensed establishment allowed to sell and permit the consumption of marijuana products for personal use. This makes them distinct in terms of offerings and legal permissions.

Do you need cash for coffee shops in Amsterdam?

Yes, it is advisable to have cash when visiting coffee shops in Amsterdam. While some establishments may accept card payments, many coffee shops, especially smaller ones or those selling cannabis products, prefer cash transactions. Having cash on hand ensures a smooth and hassle-free experience when making purchases at these establishments.

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About the author

Das Reisen ist meine große Leidenschaft. Ich liebe es, die Wanderwege in Rio de Janeiro zu erkunden, die besten Strände in Miami zu entdecken, die ältesten Museen in Rom zu besuchen und noch die besten Gerichte in Paris zu verkosten.

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