In the past, Leidseplein was a parking lot, a place where people should leave their carriages before entering Amsterdam. Today, Leidse square or Leidsepleinin one of the most important, busiest and attractive nightlife centers in Amsterdam, the square and the surroundings streets are full with a large number of bars, restaurants, nightclubs, discotheques, cinemas, theaters and a large variety of shows that attracts both locals and visitors from around the world.
The Leidseplein is located on the southeast of the central district of Amsterdam, near of the Singelgracht canal. It is common to see Leidseplein, almost all day of the year, crowded by visitors looking for a comfortable place among the many terraces that are placed in this busy square. Leidseplein is also known by its street shows in which we can seebuskers, jugglers, fire-swallowing and other many artists offering beautiful shows to people who walk through this area.
One of the most important buildings in Leidseplein is definitely the Municipal Theatre (Stadsschouwburg), a huge and amazing neo-renaissance building built in 1894, in order to host opera performances, replacing the old theaters destroyed by fire. Near the Municipal theatre is placed another important building named Melkweg (Milky Way), The Melkweg was inaugurated in 1970 by an enterprising group of artists who restored an old abandoned dairy. Melkweg houses periodically various types of expositions like music, dance and theater, photography and of course film.
Other important buildings near Leidseplein are:
- The rock music venues Paradiso and Melkweg.
- Holland Casino.
- The American Hotel.
- VondelPark, considered the largest park in Amsterdam.
How to get Leidseplein
- Take trams 1, 2 or 5 to the fairly self explanatory Leidseplein stop.
- If you are walking, Leidseplein is in the center of the city, by following Leidsestraat.
Leidseplein is a place that you definitely should visit.