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I spent over two years living in Amsterdam, so I was naturally curious about the A’DAM lookout after reading about the swing over Amsterdam. I’m a bit of an adrenaline junkie, so when my friend asked me if I’d go out on the A’DAM swing with her, I went for it. However, was the A’DAM swing and lookout worth almost twenty euros? Keep reading for this honest review of the A’DAM lookout.
I paid for this excursion to the A’DAM lookout in Amsterdam Noord myself, so this is my honest opinion. This post contains affiliate links, so see my disclosure for more information.
In this post, I include the following information:
- The price of the A’DAM lookout and the price of the A’DAM swing
- My experience at the A’DAM lookout and swing
- Is the A’DAM swing and lookout overrated?
- Where to go in Amsterdam instead of the A’DAM swing
- How to get into the A’DAM tower for free (ish)
A’DAM lookout price and A’DAM swing price
The cost of entry for the A’DAM lookout is 13.50 euros (at the time of writing). This does not include the cost of the A’DAM swing, which costs an additional 5 euros. This brings you to 19.50 euros with waiting in line. I ended up paying for the premium package, which included two house drinks (not specialty cocktails), for 19.50, not including the price of the swing. (The house drink was something with ginger and fairly tasty, but not particularly strong or notable.) Also, the surprise with the premium package is a bottle opener.
My A’DAM lookout and swing experience
After buying my A’DAM lookout tickets online, I went with my husband and a friend. My husband was sold at the idea of Europe’s highest swing and/or an adrenaline rush. We rock climb together, so the idea of going on the A’DAM swing sounded exciting. It seemed very touristy, but sometimes you need be a tourist in your own city.
We arrived and had to wait in line. Like with most tourist traps, they made us take a photo with a green screen that was offered to us (not for free). Afterwards, we took the elevator up. Admittedly, the elevator was a bit cool, but it made me kind of nauseous. We arrived with a minimal wait at the MADAM bar and headed up to the rooftop for the A’DAM swing.
The wait for the A’DAM swing was about fifteen minutes although a bit miserable with the cold. The A’DAM swing was fairly short and the swing was pretty slow. (I don’t know why I expected it to be faster.) The attendant will offer to take photos for you and/or install your gopro to record your experience. If you look down, you’ll see an industrial area and some water. The best views are to the south, however you really have to crane your neck over to see these views of Amsterdam.
After it was over, we headed back inside for our welcome drinks. The drinks were nothing notable, but fine. The view was nice, however it wasn’t worth twenty euros. After two drinks, Jacob and I decided to get another cocktail as we were already there. (The photo above is of my extra cocktail, not the welcome cocktail.) Then, we left. I’d say that we were at the A’DAM lookout for about two hours, including an hour of drinking and a half hour of standing in line.
Is the A’DAM swing and/or the A’DAM lookout overrated?
…Yeah, the A’DAM swing is definitely a tourist trap and I did it once for research.. However, as someone who lived in Amsterdam, I promise you that you can get better views of Amsterdam for less money than the A’DAM swing or the A’DAM lookout. The A’DAM swing was fun-ish for a few minutes, but it’s not worth your money. It’s all about the ‘gram as your view from 100 meters up is straight down to an industrial park. Meanwhile, the photo that the attendant takes for you shows a way better view than you’re getting as the swing goes off to the east, rather than to the south (towards Amsterdam center).
Personally, I really felt let down by the A’DAM lookout experience and ripped off (as did my husband). However, we felt obligated to at least take advantage of our included two drinks. We ended up staying for one more cocktail just because …we were there, but honestly, I’d recommend skipping the A’DAM swing all together.
Where to go in Amsterdam instead of the A’DAM swing
If you’re looking for a real adrenaline rush, head to Klimmuur for some real adrenaline. Klimmuur is where my husband and I go rock climbing. They provide lessons as well as gear rentals if you’re not fully prepared. The gym is right along the IJ with a nice bar with reasonable drinks in case you give up early.
For the views without the price tag of the A’DAM swing, head to Blue Amsterdam. With no admission fees, this cozy brunch place hidden in an shopping center in Amsterdam has 360 degree views without the crowds. (You’re welcome.) Alternatively, get into A’DAM tower for free and save your twenty euros for something else.
How to get into A’DAM lookout for free without paying admission
From 9:30 pm onwards, you can visit Madam, the bar within the A’DAM lookout, to enjoy the same views for the price of a cocktail. You must be 21+ and dress nicely. Not bad, huh? I honestly have to say that the custom-made cocktails at MADAM were really well done with a generous swing of gin although they aren’t particularly cheap. The bar has the same epic views as you’d see daytime from the A’DAM tower although it will be harder to take photos due to the glass reflection.
If you’re looking for an affordable hotel with epic views of Amsterdam, you can stay in the same building that houses the A’DAM lookout and wake up to the epic 180 degree views of Amsterdam for a fraction of the cost staying in Amsterdam center every day. (The ferry between Amsterdam Noord and Amsterdam Centraal runs regularly and is 100% free!)
Have you visited the A’DAM lookout? What did you think of the A’DAM swing?
For more insider tips for Amsterdam, click for secret places in Amsterdam, your perfect itinerary for three days in Amsterdam, what to know about biking in Amsterdam, day trips from Amsterdam, and don’ts for Amsterdam.