Architecture | History

Canal Ring Architecture walk

Dive into the history of the world famous canals of Amsterdam



Let us guide you on a walk through the Amsterdam canal ring, along prosperous merchant’s houses, canals and bridges. Amsterdam Canal Ring is a masterpiece of urban engineering in the 17th century, listed on the UNESCO world heritage list.

Learn more about the people that shaped Amsterdam: bankers, merchants, philosophers, freethinkers and arms traders. Discover the most picturesque cityscapes, the narrowest canal house… and the house where New York was conceived.


  • Architecture
Why do all the canal houses look different, yet similar? Don’t get lost! On this tour we give you a deeper insight on the architectural styles and the monumental heritage, from late 16th century renaissance towards the latest design trends.
  • Urban planning
The canal ring has been designated an UNESCO world heritage site. What were the groundbreaking ideas behind this set of treelined waterways, side streets, bridges and water locks? Get to know the bigger picture of Dutch 17th century urban planning. 
  • Famous people on the canal ring
Through the centuries some people on the Amsterdam Canal Ring have changed the course of world history. Get to know its most influential dwellers; from merchants and philosophers to writers and rebels.
  • The impact of the canal ring

Many Dutch people associate the canal ring with power and eccentricity. People living here are assumed to be a bit different from the rest of the country.

The Canal Ring Architecture tour on YouTube

Peter B
Peter B
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We enjoyed a great tour with Edgar on the Amsterdam Canals.
EC 8531
EC 8531
Read More
Exploring the canals of Amsterdam on foot with Tijs was the highlight of my visit to the city


Starting point

We start at the Herenmarkt, on the Brouwersgracht, Behind the ‘West Indisch Huis’, a 10 minute walk from Amsterdam Central Station


Duration: 2 hours  (about 3,5 km)


A drink in a typical Dutch ‘Brown Café’.

Combine with...

Flexible as we are, you can combine this tour with: - Jordaan - Rijksmuseum - Mediaval Amsterdam - Walk & Cruise - Financial History - Rembrandt Walk - World War II - Sixties


Tailored tours, tailored offers

Our private tours are tailor made. Do you prefer a hotel pick up? A mix of tours? A more extended program? We are here to make your Amsterdam visit a great experience.

Contact us to receive a tailor made offer:

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What others say about us

  •   Tijs was amazing. His knowledge is outstanding and the tour was fun, interesting and informative. We would definitely recommend him to anyone needing a tour guide in Amsterdam. He tailor... read more

    Merle K

      Gerben Post is an outstanding and knowledgeable tour guide. He provided a moving experience about a topic that is difficult and painful. His ability to provide important and... read more

    Nancy L

      Tijs is a fantastic, energetic and fun guide. Our group consisted of 30 international guests. They loved the walk through Amsterdam guided by Tijs. Defenitelly can recomment Historical Amsterdam Tours!

  •   Amazing experience! Tijs took us through the history, like coming back in the past. Walking in the streets, listening at his storytelling was an incredible experience. Such a passionate guide!... read more


      I've been in the Tijs's "Amsterdam Jewish in WW2" tour. I live in Amsterdam for quite some time and was walking near these spots without knowing so many tears... read more


      Tijs gave us a wonderful tour of Amsterdam focused on literary history. He showed us where several main Dutch Authors lived, took us to sites that inspired writers and even... read more

    thumb Joyce S
  •   Living in Amsterdam I read quite a bit about its history. However, during the history of expats tour Tijs knew how to surpise me with interesting details I didn't know... read more

    thumb suusjeaussie1979

      Maarten was our tour guide. Very punctual, friendly and informative. Booked for my partner who is a finance professional and he loved it. Other positives: well structured and researched; happy... read more

    thumb Sightseer778726

      Tijs gave my family a great tour of the Jewish Quarter in Amsterdam. He was organized, entertaining, informative. It was exactly what we were hoping - educational and a... read more

    thumb MKRBethesda
  •   On our first trip to Amsterdam together, my husband and I wanted to get a city tour and make the most of our relatively short time here. Historical Amsterdam... read more

    thumb EdSamDC

      My family of 5 adults never has more than a long weekend to explore the cities of Europe and Tijs truly surpassed our expectations, This knowledgable, fun and experienced guide... read more

    thumb NJL

      All communication before the tour was prompt and friendly. Tijs was waiting exactly where he was supposed to be, and we did a walking tour which covered the Golden... read more

    thumb Lovetotravel7559
  •   Edgar was our tour guide and met us at Centraal Station. We were guided around the city for the next two hours and it was delivered in perfect English. You... read more

    thumb Peter B

      I was looking for personal tour guides for our trip on Amsterdam. I read about Edmund and Tijs on the web and started an email dialogue to create an itinerary... read more

    thumb Bob D

      Exploring the canals of Amsterdam on foot with Tijs as the tour guide was one of the highlights of my first visit to the city. Tijs not only has thorough... read more

    thumb EC8531

Tailored tours, tailored offers

Our private tours are tailor made. Do you prefer a hotel pick up? A mix of tours? A more extended program? We are here to make your Amsterdam visit a great experience.

Contact us to receive a tailor made offer:

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