Amsterdam features one of the only sub-zero Xtracold ice bars in the world. Here’s what it’s like inside the ice bar Amsterdam.
The most popular bar in Amsterdam is known for being the coolest corner of the city. This bar is located in the famous Rembrandt Square of the city and they maintain a chilled temperature inside even in the summer season. If you are visiting Amsterdam in the upcoming vacation season, it is good to spare some time to enjoy a memorable time at Amsterdam Ice Bar. This Ice Bar is the best place for adventure at the North Pole.
Amsterdam’s Xtracold Ice Bar really lives up to its name. Nestled in the winding streets and canals of Holland’s capital, you’ll know you’ve arrived when you see the big stood-up polar bear. Even in reception, the interior is kitted out like the frozen inside of a wooden ship. The man hands you 3 golden drinks tokens and you head through to the big bar.
Historically Accurate Journey
Get ready to board a Dutch exploration vessel on a voyage to the Northeast Passage in the Arctic Circle.
You will follow in the footsteps of Dutch explorer Willem Barentz and experience what it was like to be stranded on the North Pole at the end of the 16th century. In total, Willem Barentsz made three voyages searching for the Northeast Passage.
On the third attempt, the ship got stuck in ice for nearly a year. The ship became lived in by polar bears. Eventually, they left on 2 smaller boats, with only 12 crewmen surviving (William Barentz died) and returning to Amsterdam.
The Ice bar Amsterdam replicates the experience of Nova Zembla. Feel what it’s like to sit in the cold as the ice bar is kept at a constant -10 degrees Celsius and keep warm by drinking alcoholic beverages. Step aboard Willem Barentsz’s ship and go on an arctic adventure at the Ice bar Amsterdam!
In the Tavern – Pre-Drinks
There’s a very exclusive-feeling tavern full of people waiting to get into the ice bar. Maritime ornaments, ships, and projector videos of boats on the high seas make an immersive atmosphere as you drink beers, cocktails, or juice.
Soon, a pirate steps up with Pirates of the Caribbean music playing, gives you the old “Are ye ready for a swashbuckling adventure?” and once everyone cheers loud enough, we prep for the cold.
Getting Ready for the Ice Bar Amsterdam
The Ice theme of this bar revolves around the disastrous voyage of a Dutch explorer from the icy island of the Arctic area where his entire crew survived for several months.
The teams will first describe to you the background story of the event and then allow you to put on gloves and a thermal jacket to step inside. You grab a big red winter coat and zip it all the way up as you feel a cool breeze from the last tipsy group exiting. Some red fingerless gloves complete your ensemble, and you head into the unknown.
Inside Xtracold Ice Bar Amsterdam
The temperature inside stays -10 degrees C all the time and everything in this space is made up of ice only. You can hold the ice glasses and redeem your tokens for shots, beer, and juice.
The walls are snow. The ceiling is fishnets, with fishing tackle strewn throughout. Fake fish are in the walls. It’s absolutely freezing. You pat yourself to check that you are indeed wearing several layers of clothes.
People feel amazed while walking on this jaw-dropping freezing floor. The bar is made up of almost 60 tons of ice which helps it to maintain its shape. The furniture, art and walls, everything are made up of ice in this area.
There are several photo opportunities for the 40-or-so people in the big glorified freezer – a ship’s steering wheel, Amsterdam Ice Bar sign, and of course the ice bar itself. Time to spend your remaining tokens!
This bar stays open every day from 13.00 to 01.00 hours; however, on weekends, the duration is increased to 12.00 to 02.40 hours. The minimum age limit to enter this bar is 18 years and you can make advanced bookings to avoid the last-minute rush at the entry terminal of this bar.
The drinks in here come served in cups of ice. Since everything is below freezing point, there’s no danger of the cups melting. The thermometer shows a steady -9.4°C, and as we’re busy taking photos, my phone goes completely dead with 35% battery and refuses to turn back on until it’s back at the hotel.
The freezing cold is slowly numbing everyone’s fingers, and you look up to notice some of the more sensible tourists have filtered out back to the warmth of the pirate tavern outside. Once the numbness turns to pain, we call it a day and head out.
Once you’ve warmed up in the tavern, you head back to the streets near De Wallen and explore the floating market.
Whether you are planning to visit Amsterdam with your partner or are ready to enjoy a memorable tour with friends, this amazing ice bar is the must-visit destination in the city. It is situated at an easily accessible location and the tickets are also available at a very affordable price. Although they will provide you with thermals and gloves to wear while entering the ice zone, it is still good to wear some warm clothes in advance to avoid extreme cold, since Amsterdam is prone to rain.
The music, lights and drinks, everything at this bar leads to happy moments and you will bring some great memories home after visiting this bar. Do not forget to take some amazing photographs in the bar to store those memories in your album for a lifetime.
Use code THINGSTODO10 to get a 10% discount.
See also: 11 Best Amsterdam Attractions