August in Amsterdam is typically mild but sunny, with the occasional bout of rain, much like the rest of the Dutch summer. As it's still peak tourist season, popular attractions, restaurants and cafes, and airports and train stations are more crowded than in off-peak months; most inconveniences can be avoided, however, if visitors allow extra time for travel, and avoid the wait with reservations (at restaurants) or advance tickets (at attractions) where possible.
- As one of Amsterdam's warmest months, it's an opportune time for days on the beach or on sun-kissed cafe terraces (but best not leave home without your umbrella, as the weather is capricious all year round)
- While the days continue to become shorter, the sun still rises rather early (before 7 a.m.) and sets late (after 8:30 p.m.)
- The new cultural season is preceded by a flurry of events even before summer festival calendar ends, which means two sources of memorable yearly events
- Visitors should still count on competition for the lowest airfares and best hotels and hostels, as peak tourist season lasts for one more month
- Expect crowds at the Anne Frank House and Museum Quarter attractions, or avoid them with online tickets and/or the I amsterdam card
- Amsterdam in summer, with its humid days and city-wide waterways, is an ideal environment for mosquitoes. Be prepared with insect repellent and an itch relief remedy
- Average high: 72°F (22°C)
- Average low: 54°F (12°C)
- Average precipitation: 2.8 in (71 mm)
Yearly Festivals & Events in August
See event web sites for this year's visitor information.
- Comedytrain International Summer Festival
Dutch comedy troupe Comedytrain invites renowned Anglophone comedians to perform in an intimate comedy club atmosphere in this English-language comedy event.
- Amsterdam Fringe Festival
80 performances, ten days, no limits -- this less conservative cousin of the Netherlands Theater Festival is the yearly event for Dutch independent theater.
- Amsterdam Gay Pride
Amsterdam Pride ushers in August with a full schedule of both indoor and outdoor events: films, art exhibits, theatrical performances, literary and sports events, parties, and of course, the famous canal parade.
- Dance Valley
Each year, Dance Valley fills the Velsen valley in Spaarnwoude with the sound of music from artists in both the national and international club and DJ scenes.
- De Parade
Amsterdam is the final stop on theater festival De Parade's tour of the Netherlands' four biggest cities, where it will unload its tents, pop-up restaurants and terraces and present more than 80 theater, music and dance performances.
- Grachtenfestival (Canal Festival)
Like the Uitmarkt Cultural Festival, the Grachtenfestival (Canal Festival) ushers in a new (classical) music season in Amsterdam and the Netherlands, with performances and events -- many free -- amid the unique atmosphere of canal-side monuments and more.
- Hartjesdagen (Little Hearts Days)
Folklore has it that the medieval "Little Hearts Day" was the only time plebeians could hunt deer in the woods around Haarlem, a sport normally reserved for noblemen; these days, men dress as women and women as men to see how the other half lives. The occasion is celebrated with several days of activities on the Zeedijk in Amsterdam Chinatown.
- Hortus Festival
Period instruments in picturesque venues is the theme of the Hortus Festival: a concert series for music from 1850 to 1950, performed on restored or replica instruments, that travels between the Hortus Botanicus (Botantical Garden) in Amsterdam and its counterparts in Leiden, Utrecht and Haren.
Loveland returns to Amsterdam for its yearly summer festival in the Sloterpark, where 20,000 attendees move to the music of internationally-renowned DJs on multiple dance floors.
The Mysteryland festival, a yearly event in nearby Haarlemmermeer, bills itself as more than "just" an excellent line-up of electronic dance music and live DJs -- it also offers innovative dance, music and theater, workshops, international eats and more.
- Netherlands Theater Festival
As the past year's cultural season draws to a close, the best Dutch theater performances of the season are reprised at the Netherlands Theater Festival.
- Pluk de Nacht Open Air Film Festival
This free open-air film festival, established in 2003, promotes international films that haven't been released in the Netherlands or have reached only a small audience.
- Robeco Summer Concerts
With an emphasis on classical and jazz, the Robeco Summer Concerts are more than just a performance series: live interviews with musicians, a crash course in classical music, and a special summer restaurant are some of the other perks on offer.
When one door closes, another opens: the end of the summer coincides with the start of a new cultural season in Amsterdam, ushered in by the popular Uitmarkt Cultural Festival, held each year on Museumplein, Leidseplein and in the Vondelpark.
- Vondelpark Open-Air Theater
Catch up to three free performances -- from theater, dance, cabaret and stand-up comedy to music -- each week at the Vondelpark Open-Air Theater, an Amsterdam institution.
- World Cinema Festival Amsterdam
The World Cinema Festival introduces the year's best independent films from Latin America, Asia and Africa to a wider audience; each year offers a wide variety of international films, plus an in-depth look at the cinema of its "country in focus".