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Exploring Amsterdam: 24H Oost

I’m just an explorer at heart. Even in my own city, I love to learn about places I never knew about. The journey of discovery–the wonder of feeling uncomfortable, then loving it and wonder how you never knew about it–is what makes exploring so great.

The city of Amsterdam organizes a program in various neighborhoods throughout the year to discover the awesome, yet lesser known gems. Sometimes they just do goofy fun stuff too!

24H Oost Iamsterdam


24H Oost was the one we finally were able to experience. It’s 24 hours of non-stop workshops, meals, activities and more. Even while just planning it on the website, I realized how much I didn’t know!

They have everything from sessions about olive oil to printing your own poster on a printing press to getting married for a whole 24 hours, and even eating dessert off the table with strangers. There’s so much more than I even knew I could do!


Amsterdam 24H Oost OliveOil


Our first stop was the Volksuniversiteit for a session all about olive oil. I think it was super interesting…but it was in Dutch. Sadly, my Dutch skills aren’t that great, so we didn’t understand it all. Even still, we learned what good and bad olive oil smells like and the different scents you may get in a bottle. Super cool stuff…especially for us foodies.


Amsterdam 24H Oost


Everything we participated in brought a smile to my face. The Print, Press & Play session at Grafisch Werkcentrum Amsterdam was so much more fun than I could have imagined. Not only did we get to design and print our own poster, everybody seems to have fun doing it. The creative side of people came out of them. I’m not the most creative with visual design but I still created an awesome “wanderlust” print that I am very proud of.


Amsterdam 24H Oost Wanderlust painting

Amsterdam 24H Oost Wanderlust


The lithograph is so much harder than I thought but we had a great teacher who was super patient with all of us. The way you have to think too complete a good lithograph is a bit beyond my comprehension. It takes some real talent!


Amsterdam 24H Oost painting

Amsterdam 24H Oost painting


Micropia is a museum/science lab that is open every day near Artis. As a former science nerd (do we ever really stop being a science nerd?) I was so enthralled by everything around me, that I go ZERO photos. How bad is that? No worries, though, we got some video!

Micropia is not only for people who love science and biology but for everyone because it’s part of everyday life. We were fascinated by all the displays and even did a kissing demonstration to see how many microbes exchanged (it was on Valentine’s Day!). Some people kissed for quite a long time an exchanged over 10 million microbes. Pretty romantic, right?

We could have spent hours looking through all the microscopes at the tiniest particles of life you can imagine. My favorite part, though, able to learn about the different climates and how microbes are able to survive. It was super sci-fi!


Amsterdam 24H Oost Mess on the Table


Maybe it’s because I love sweets, but my favorite part of 24H Oost was the Mess on the Table at East 57. This idea of covering a table with food (no dishes) and eating off of it with strangers is weird, unusual, and super awesome.


Amsterdam 24H Oost Mess on the Table


Because it was dessert, I didn’t care who I was sharing the table with. No, I can’t tell you what everything was because I don’t know and didn’t care. It wasn’t just a piece of art…it was delicious!


Amsterdam 24H Oost Mess on the Table


I just can’t tell you enough how much I love the idea of discovering your own city. This event is for the locals, but visitors can participate too. Some things are in Dutch, so just read about a session before committing. The 24H events are held throughout the year in various areas, so if you’re able to, check it out if you’re around.

What is something you would love to show off in your neighborhood or town? Tell us about it!

Amsterdam 24H Oost

For a real peek into the action of the printing press, Micropia, and Mess on the Table, check out our video on YouTube!


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6 thoughts on “Exploring Amsterdam: 24H Oost

    1. Thanks Amanda! I love finding new corners of Amsterdam. It’s such a dynamic city that most people miss when they visit, so I’m happy to show another side of it!

  1. Wow – I love your post!! Always fun to find unique and interesting things to do in your own town. I love your post because as a parent to teenagers – it’s great to find something “hands on” and cool – not just the basic sight-seeing etc..

    We had an opportunity to spend an afternoon in Amsterdam a couple years ago on our way to the US. We enjoyed the city and I’m looking to return one day soon! Thanks for sharing this.

    1. Thanks so much for your comment! I prefer hands-on too. Those new science museums are the best too (there’s one in Amsterdam called NEMO if you’re interested 😉 ) Hopefully you get to return and enjoy the city again!

  2. This looks like a brilliant idea and a wonderful way to find out more about what is on offer locally. The olive oil session sounds really interesting. Thanks for linking to #TravelAtHome

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