The Prinsengracht – Amsterdam´s most beautiful canal
The Prinsengracht (Prince's canal) is the best that can happen to you whenever you do not have plan where exactly you should go. Lovely houseboats and historic canal houses. Here you will find out what you should not miss!
The most beautiful house boats drop their anchors along the Prinsengracht
Amsterdam´s most beautiful canal surrounds the historic centre like a wide belt. Together with the two other main canals, the Herengracht and the Keizersgracht, it forms Amsterdam´s Canal Ring, which was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010.
Beautifully illuminated in the evening - view from Papiermolensluis
It only takes a few minutes walking from the train station to get to its beginning. From there, you can simply stroll along the promenade and enjoy the magical views on the historic old town.
The Prinsengracht is perfect for an extensive evening walk. At night, the old canal houses are beautifully lighted. The atmosphere is unique.
The splendour of the historic canal houses represent Holland´s status as one of the globally leading trade nations in the golden age.
Starts at the Unicorn Sluice (Eenhoornsluis),
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Today, the Prinsengracht is considered one of the most expensive addresses in the world. Only a few private people can afford an apartment or even a house here. Besides stores and hotels, many banks and insurances use the houses in the Prinsengracht as representative braches.
Find out more about Amsterdam´s unique canal system in our article about the Canal Ring – including valuable insider tips for your canal walk!
Read on and find out what the most beautiful sights along the canal are and how to get there.
How do I get to the Prinsengracht?
Walking: The entrance to the Prinsengracht is at the so-called unicorn sluice (Eenhoornsluis). Coming from the main station, always stay right, first cross the Herengracht and then the Keizersgracht to get to the Prinsengracht. It will take you about 15 minutes from the main station.
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With the tram: Take 18, 21 or 22. Closest stop: Buiten Oranjestraat.
Top 5 attractions at the Prinsengracht
One highlight chases the other along the Prinsengracht. As the canal itself already is a work of art, you should not only concentrate on the most beautiful attractions.
Prinsengracht from above - Leliesluis Bridge
Look around: Narrow canal houses with playful gables, eccentric stores and magnificent house boats – Both sides of the Prinsengracht await you with countless interesting places to discover.
Anne Frank House, Westerkerk, Hotel Pulitzer – Our map shows you some of the most exciting attractions along the Prinsengracht. Show Map.
Besides all the obvious and hidden beauties, you can discover many famous attractions by just walking down the Prinsengracht.
- The narrowest house at the Prinsengracht - House Number 58
It is number 58. There are many extremely narrow houses at the canals of Amsterdam. The tradesmen from those times all wanted a house at a canal, so that they could get their goods directly to their houses. However, taxes were calculated based on the width of the houses back then. That meant that a narrower house could save a lot of money. More information about the historic buildings in Amsterdam can be found on our page „Architecture in Amsterdam“.
- Anne Frank House - House Number 263-267
The house in which Anne Frank was hiding from the Nazis and wrote her famous diary is also located at the Prinsengracht. Today, the Anne Frank House is a museum and one of the most popular attractions of Amsterdam.
- Westerkerk - House Number 281
When you walk down the Prinsengracht, the distinctive tower at the Westerkerk will appear in front of you over and over again (see picture above). The church was built between 1620 and 1631 and has the highest tower of Amsterdam with around 80 meters.
- Hotel Pulitzer - House Number 315-331
Residing in a luxurious hotel, located at one of the world´s most beautiful canals – a dream. If you have the required pocket money, you can fulfil this dream in the Hotel Pulitzer. The five star hotel consists of 26 canal houses from the 17th century that have been restored with a lot of love and attention to detail.
- Prinsengracht Hospital - House Number 769
The old hospital at the Prinsengracht nr 768 was built during a Cholera epidemic around 1850. The centrally located clinic in Amsterdam mainly targeted wealthy clients. In 2015, the hospital was closed down. Today, the historic building is part of a real estate company.
That was our tour along the beautiful Prinsengracht. Do you know any more attractions, or have you been to Amsterdam before? Do you have any tips for other travelers? Then write us a comment below.
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