Thursday, 31 January 2013 3:17 PM
If you don't want to follow the crowds to the likes of Paris and Venice for a Valentine's getaway with your loved one, consider visiting Amsterdam instead. The city is known for being quirky and has a variety of offerings for couples to enjoy in February.
Read on for some suggestions of things you can get up to this Valentine's Day if you head to the Dutch capital for a romantic break. You'll find a range of accommodation in the city on the Vacenza website, so you can pick a hotel close to the attractions you want to visit.
Take in a show
There are always theatrical and musical performances happening in Amsterdam, but on February 14th there will be some special productions designed specifically with love in mind.
For instance, at the city's Concertgebouw the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra will be taking to the stage to give renditions of pieces by the likes of Verdi, Puccini and Elgar as part of their Concertgebouw Classic Series.
Alternatively, you can book tickets to the Boom Chicago: Baby I Like It Raw Valentine experience. The theatre group has recently moved to the Rozentheater and it will be putting on its production Baby I Like It Raw on February 14th, after holding a special love-themed quiz earlier in the evening.
Go on a canal cruise
One thing Amsterdam is famous for is its canals and, while they make a picturesque backdrop for a romantic stroll, they are also ideal for a boat trip. For a really unique experience, book a tour on a traditional Dutch barge known as a bok.
You can explore the Aalsmeer area, where you'll pass vast fields of flowers that are commercially farmed, as well as travel along one of the ring canals and through lakes. All this will give you the chance to appreciate the unique scenery in the Netherlands on a relaxing tour.
Visit Gassan Diamonds
Everyone knows diamonds are a girl's best friend, so what better way to demonstrate your love than by visiting Gassan Diamonds, an establishment where the cut stones are transformed into sparkling gems?
During the tour, you'll see every stage of the diamond-cutting process in action and, if you've got the money, you can even buy one of the high-quality stones and have it set in the jewellery of your choice – a truly memorable Valentine's Day treat!
Go on a chocolate-making workshop
If your budget won't quite stretch to diamonds, opt for another favourite Valentine's treat – chocolates. Unlimited Delicious is located on Haarlemmerstraat and here you can learn how to make chocolates in a 1.5 hour workshop. While there aren't any workshops planned for February 14th itself, there will be two running on February 17th – perfect if you've opted for a weekend break.
Afterwards, treat yourselves to one of the delicious cakes made in the onsite bakery accompanied by Unlimited Delicious's famous homemade dark chocolate.
Kiss on the Magere Brug
The Magere Brug (or Skinny Bridge in English) is one of the most picturesque bridges crossing Amsterdam's canals. It got its name because originally this wooden drawbridge was only just wide enough for two people to pass at the same time. However, the original structure has been replaced to cope with a greater amount of traffic.
What makes Magere Brug particularly worth a visit on a Valentine's break is the legend that says couples who embrace on the bridge will enjoy everlasting love. Evening is the best time to go, as it looks especially beautiful when it's illuminated after night falls.