Exploring the Red Light District in Amsterdam

Amsterdam’s Red Light District is known worldwide for its unique atmosphere and vibrant nightlife. If you are curious about this iconic area and want to learn more, you’ve come to the right place! In this blog post, we will delve into the key aspects of the Red Light District and provide you with useful information for your visit.

What is the Red Light District?

The Red Light District, also known as “De Wallen,” is a historic neighborhood in the city center of Amsterdam. It is famous for its legalized prostitution, sex shops, adult theaters, and vibrant nightlife. The district is marked by red neon lights above the windows of the brothels, indicating the presence of sex workers.

Where is the Red Light District located?

The Red Light District is situated in the medieval city center of Amsterdam, near the Dam Square. It is easily accessible by public transportation, such as trams and buses. The main streets in the district are Oudezijds Voorburgwal, Oudezijds Achterburgwal, and Trompettersteeg.

What can you expect to see and do?

Walking through the Red Light District, you’ll come across an array of experiences:

  • Red-Lit Windows: The most distinctive feature of the Red Light District is the red-lit windows, showcasing sex workers who are available for hire.
  • Sex Shows and Theaters: There are several adult theaters where you can watch live performances and sex shows.
  • Coffee Shops: Alongside the erotic establishments, you’ll find numerous coffee shops where you can relax and enjoy legal cannabis.
  • Museums: The Red Light District also offers some intriguing museums, such as the Sexmuseum Amsterdam and the Museum of Prostitution.
  • Bars and Nightclubs: The district boasts a lively nightlife scene, with a variety of bars and nightclubs to suit different tastes.

Is it safe to visit the Red Light District?

While the Red Light District is generally safe to visit, it’s important to be aware of your surroundings and take necessary precautions. Here are a few tips to ensure a safe experience:

  • Be respectful towards sex workers and do not take photos or videos of them without their permission.
  • Avoid street dealers and illegal substances. Always remember that cannabis can only be legally consumed in licensed coffee shops.
  • Stay in well-lit areas and avoid wandering into secluded alleys.
  • Keep your belongings secure and be cautious of pickpockets, as the area can get crowded, especially during weekends.


The Red Light District in Amsterdam is a unique and culturally rich area, offering a fascinating glimpse into the city’s liberal attitudes towards sex and drugs. It’s important to approach the district with an open mind and respect for the local rules and regulations. With this guide, you’re now equipped with the basic knowledge to explore and enjoy the Red Light District safely. Remember, it’s not just about the adult entertainment, but also about understanding the history and culture that make this district so intriguing.





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