The Best Cocktail Bars in Amsterdam

Fancy treating yourself to a cocktail? Here's where to go...

Treating yourself to a perfectly mixed drink at an Amsterdam cocktail bar is the perfect way to kick off your holiday in style – you've earned it! But if you’re going to enjoy a great cocktail at one of these decadent nightspots, you’ll want to know you’ve gone to the right place. Here, we take you through some of our favourites. 

Our top 5 Amsterdam Cocktail Bars 

1) W Hotel Rooftop Bar 

Looking for a different way to get high in Amsterdam? The Skybar is the answer. Towering above the city at the luxurious W Hotel, this rooftop bar has unrivalled views over the city and whether you’re inside listening to a jazz pianist or local DJ, or enjoying the sight of the moonlit cityscape from their beautiful balcony, having a cocktail here is difficult to beat. It’s a bit pricey and it’s best to dress to impress but even if you’re just coming in for one, it’s worth it. Find out more on their website, here. 

2) Door 74 

You’ve probably walked past it, without even the faintest idea of what is behind the shabby old street-facing door... There’s no sign on the door, its location is something of a local secret and in order to visit this exclusive drinking hole, you must reserve on the day. With the style of an old-fashioned speakeasy from days gone by and staff dressed to match, this classic cocktail bar has all the elements – great service, incredible drinks and a wonderfully civilised and sophisticated ambience. Esquire magazine the Netherlands have voted Door 74 as the best cocktail bar in the Netherlands and we can understand exactly why – it's definitely one of our favourites too! 

3) Flying Dutchman 

Flying Dutchman Cocktails is located right in the heart of town at Singel 460. One of the (many) reasons why this bar is in our top 5 is their use of great local spirits. Jenever is the national spirit of the Netherlands, having been distilled in the country for centuries. Flying Dutchman makes a number of cocktails based around this classic but much underrated spirit and for those wanting a real taste of Amsterdam, this bar is difficult to beat. You can take a look on their website here for more details! 

4) Hiding in Plain Sight 

Hiding in Plain Sight’s website may spout enough hipster nonsense to make you feel like you’ve drank too many of their cocktails and need some air (particularly cringeworthy examples include ‘The thoughts attached to the real desires of the seekers will lead us to them and they to us’ and describing themselves as ‘Occasional Creators of Memorable Evenings’) but the bar itself is actually excellent. Their cocktails have won awards for good reason and, despite the name and pretentious marketing, their bar isn’t hiding too hard – you can find it on Rapenburg 18 in the bar-shaped building. 

5) Waterkant 

Although the Waterkant is not a cocktail bar, it is a bar that serves cocktails and it’s so good that we’ll let it sneak onto the list at number 5. This bar is situated under a multi-level carpark in a place that previously was a piss-soaked area most used by local junkies to shoot up. Not sounding too promising? Well, you’re wrong – it's now one of the city’s best loved bars and following a real effort to clean the area up, has become an Amsterdam hotspot. Their cocktails are pretty good (and well-priced) and although it can be difficult to find a spot on a summer’s day, if you can get a seat facing the water you’ve won the Amsterdam lottery! This is a local favourite and well worth checking out when the sun is shining! Try their Surinamese Roti if you get peckish – although it hails from the South American nation of Suriname, it’s become something of an Amsterdam favourite – and you’ll need to line your stomach as Waterkant don’t mix their drinks in half measures.

Had a couple of cocktails but thirsty for more? Check out our Pub Crawls!