Claimed to be the only floating flower market in the world, the flower market, known locally as Bloemenmarkt in Amsterdam is definitely a must see.
Moored up on the Singel canal, just a short walk from Dam Square, the market is made up of a number of houseboats, or shopboats if you like, that are permanently moored year round. Open 7 days a week, there are a number of different shops to explore, and as the name suggests there are predominantly flowers on sale.
A gentle stroll along the bank of the canal offers a view of the wide variety of cut flowers, garden flowers and numerous other types of flowers on offer. On one side of the pathway, the boats sit so sturdy you could be forgiven for forgetting that you are actually on a boat, floating on the canal. On the other side of the pathway, an array of shops sit set down from street level offering cheese, souvenirs and even hammocks!
My visit to the floating flower market was not what I thought it might be – I had visions of boats loosely floating on the canal and a daring walk along some kind of plank to reach them. Obviously when I think of the risks of doing that, I should have realised how unlikely it was to be that. But still, I was slightly disappointed at the floating aspect of the market as you really would not know you were on a boat or floating on the canal unless you approach from behind and see them actually in the canal.
Overall however, it was lovely to see all the different flowers that are on sale, and of course see the lovely tulips Holland is famed for! If flowers aren’t quite your thing, it’s still worth a visit as there are shops opposite the stalls, in the basements of charming buildings with items on sale that aren’t flower-related in the slightest – think cheese, chocolate…
You won’t need long here, depending on how much you like flowers or shopping, you could easily see everything in about half an hour. The floating market is great, but don’t forget to check out the shops opposite too!