The square can get very crowded, making it attractive to pickpockets: keep an eye out!
Dam Square got its name the same way Amsterdam did: it began life as a dam of the Amstel river nearly 750 years ago. As the city grew so did the dam, until it became large enough for a town square, and it has been at Amsterdam’s heart ever since.
Paved with the Dutch capital’s distinctive cobblestones, the square today is a great place to breathe among some of the city’s most notable attractions: Madame Tussaud’s, the 15th century Gothic Nieuwe Kerk, the Royal Palace and the swish department store De Bijenkorf are all here.
Looming over Dam Square is the National Monument, built in 1956. This impressive white pillar commemorates the victims of World War II. As an important centre not only of the capital but of the Netherlands as a whole, National Memorial Day is held here every year on 4 May. At other times of year the square plays host to a variety of events: you may encounter a funfair, market stalls or even an ice-rink. There is also a horsedrawn carriage tour that leaves from the square.
Sit down here with a coffee or beer to watch the world go by after a busy day of shopping or sightseeing: always busy with trams, bikes and people, you’re unlikely to miss Dam Square on a trip to Amsterdam.
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