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Watching Ajax Amsterdam play in the Johan Cruijff ArenA is truly a unique experience. With league matches often selling out, the atmosphere promises to be an unforgettable one with roughly 56,120 spectators filling the stands. Ajax is named after the legendary Greek mythological hero of the same name who was described as the strongest of the Achaeans. It seems to be a fitting name for a team that has grown to become the most successful in the Netherlands – making it worthy of a football trip.
Amsterdam is a terrific destination for a city break. A fantastic destination filled with beautiful architecture, scenic views over canals, and a fair number of opportunities for hedonists. All of this makes Amsterdam a great place for your next football trip.
To ensure you have the best possible time on your football trip to Ajax Amsterdam, we have created a list of the best tips for your voyage. From making your way to the Johan Cruijff ArenA to navigating your way through busy tram and bike lanes, here is what you need to know about visiting Amsterdam:
AFC Ajax’s home stadium is the Johan Cruijff ArenA. The stadium was opened in 1996. With a capacity of 56,120 during football games (71,000 during concerts), it is the largest stadium in the Netherlands. Originally, it was named the Amsterdam ArenA, but it was renamed after former Ajax legend Johan Cruijff in 2019.
The stadium is rated a Category 4 stadium by UEFA and has formerly been host to many important events, including matches in Euro 2000 and Euro 2020. It was also renovated in 2018, meaning that facilities are adequately equipped to accommodate fans.
Ajax Amsterdam is one of the most widely-supported clubs in the Netherlands, with stadium occupancy averaging between 91% and 93% every year. Thus, on your football trip to Amsterdam, you can expect to find a stadium filled with passionate fans who love their team. Matches to consider watching when booking a trip to Amsterdam include games against Feyenoord and PSV Eindhoven.
Ajax’s stadium is located in the south-eastern part of the city, functionally named Amsterdam Zuid-Oost. It is located about 8.5 kilometres from the city centre. Luckily, the Netherlands has a strong public transportation system, making it easy to find your way anywhere in the Amsterdam. This means that you do not have to drive (unless you really want to do so.) You could also opt to take a taxi. This could be cheaper or more expensive than public transport depending where you depart from and how many people are in your travel group.
If you plan on using public transport to move around the city during your football trip to Ajax Amsterdam, we suggest you invest in an anonymous OV-chipkaart, which provides you with access to all trains, trams, metros, and busses in the Netherlands. You will need to load funds on the card, though.
If you insist on driving to the stadium yourself, understand that you will need to pay between 7€ and 14€ for parking. There is space for about 9,000 cars.
If you are travelling by metro to the Johan Cruijff Arena from the centre of the city, you will need to take Metro 54 from the Amsterdam Central Station. From there, it will take about 16 minutes on the metro to get to your destination. You will go past ten stops, including Nieuwmarkt, Waterlooplein, and Weesperplaien. It is important that you get off at the stop named Amsterdam Bijlmer ArenA.
From here, there is about a 200 metre walk to the stadium, which takes about two minutes. All-in-all, it shouldn’t take you too long to get to your destination if you use this option.
There are many busses that stop near the Amsterdam Arena which you can use to make your way to the match during your football trip. Bus lines include 29, 59, 60, 62, 137, 158, 174 and 175 each of which stops in different destinations.
The Johan Cruijff ArenA has a stadium plan which is pretty easy to figure out. There are four sides of the stadium and three categories. Here is what you need to know:
No football trip is complete without a stadium tour of the Johan Cruijff ArenA. Tickets for the tour are 18€ for adults and €16 for children between the ages of 5 and 12. Children below the age of 4 get in for free. Tours start every half hour every day between 09:30 and 16:30 and run for about 75 minutes.
Some of the highlights of the tour include going through the players’ tunnel and getting an up-close view of the pitch, dug-outs, and the main stand. You will also get to see the press room, which will be very noticeable from television. If you are interested in the club’s history, a walk through the club’s Gallery of Fame will likely be very appealing to you. Here you will get to learn more about Ajax’s most renown player: Johan Cruijff.
It is important to note that on tours have limited to no availability on match days. It depends on the match day, but it’s safe to say that you may need to add an extra day to your football trip if you want to do a stadium tour.
Before attending the match, you may be interested in seeing what the establishments in and around the arena have to offer you. Many match attendees looks for a pub or restaurant to visit before the game begins to avoid queues in the arena. If you are one such fan, here are some of our top recommendations:
The Grolsch Cine Café (not to be confused with the Grolsch Pub in the stadium) is located a short walk from the stadium. The Café offers visitors some recognisable all-round favourites which make for a good pre-game match experience, including some traditional Dutch favourites. As the name may suggest, this is also the perfect place to get pint of beer.
Located near the ArenA, the JinSo Lounge Bar & Restaurant is a general Asian restaurant with many menu options to suit the needs of all types of visitors. As the restaurant is near another entertainment area, there are more attractions to enjoy before you head to the game.
Ajax is one of the biggest football clubs in Europe. While the club is arguably not as large or recognisable as teams such as Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, or Manchester United, they are still one of the most successful on the continent. The team has won 4 UEFA Champions League titles, 1 Europa League title, 36 Eredivisie titles, and 20 KNVB Cup titles.
The team’s biggest rivals are Feyenoord Rotterdam (this match-up is known as the De Klassieker.) They also have a bustling rivalry with PSV Eindhoven. Matches against these two teams are often filled with emotions as passionate supporters fill the stadiums and are definitely worth a trip.
Ajax’s logo has changed four times throughout the years. The first logo the club sported was just a picture of an Ajax player. In 1911, the club decided to change their logo as they changed their kit and wanted the two to match. Almost two decades later in 1928, the logo changed for the third time. The 1928 logo included a portrait of the Greek hero after which the club was named.
The logo was changed for the fourth time in 1990. It still included a portrait of Ajax – however, it is less detailed than the first. An interesting fact about the logo is that
The Rijksmuseum is a museum dedicated to Dutch art and history. If you are interested in seeing all the famous works from Johannes Vermeer and Rembrandt, you need to visit the Rijksmuseum.
The Anne Frank House is a museum dedicated to the famous teenage World War 2 diarist of the same name. Travel back in time as you walk through the house and experience one of history’s darkest periods. Booking ahead is recommended.
Heineken is the most exported beer in the world. See how the famous Dutch pilsner is made with a trip through this historic brewery. Go through the museum and see how this brewer has moved from using Industrial Revolution era tools to modern technology to make the world’s most famous beer.
Brouwerij ‘t IJ started as a local brewery in Amsterdam in 1985. It has since grown into a much loved beer in the country. The formerly small brewery often runs tours and tastings. The brewery is only open between 14:00 and 20:00. So, make sure you book before you lose out.
Very nice city and lovely people. A great company who had no worries in helping me when I had a question.
Tip: Take enough money.
Great value for money and fantastic service from Footballbreak. Very efficient with all documents sent on time as promised. Booked Ajax game and only problem was the seats were quite high up in the stadium with lots of steps to climb.
Tip: Some great tours - De Prael craft brewery definitely worth a visit!!
Amsterdam was quality! Can’t wait to go back!
Really good package that all went really smoothly - the Ajax stadium is definitely worth a visit and the atmosphere was superb.
tip: Purchase a chip card as soon as you arrive to use on the public transport as that is the best way to get round the city