In Zuidoost, catch a headlining international act at Heineken Music Hall, go horseback riding, canoeing or sailing at Gaasperpark or watch a football game at the Amsterdam ArenA. Zuidoost (Southeastern) is one of the most multicultural districts in Amsterdam and has recently become a hub for shopping and entertainment.
During the 1960s, Zuidoost was the site for a trial development of modern high-rise apartments surrounded by parks and plenty of public space, a very different aesthetic from the historic crowding of 19th-century townhouses. However, its distance from the city center and its cheap real estate meant that it was largely populated by migrants. It became a sort of ghetto. Visit today to appreciate how reinvestment has rehabilitated the area, providing economic and living centers in the southeast, particularly along ArenA Boulevard.
Here find the Heineken Music Hall, where some of the best international acts, from Beyoncé to Radiohead, perform. Watch an IMAX movie at the Pathé cinema or cheer on the teams playing in the Netherlands’ largest football stadium, Amsterdam ArenA. Soccer aficionados can even take a 1-hour tour of the stadium.
Shoppers will love exploring Amsterdam’s largest market area, the open-air Amsterdamse Poort mall, open Monday to Saturday. On Mondays and Thursdays in the car park, mingle with the multicultural crowd and taste street food at the stalls of the fashion, electronics and farmers’ markets. Next to the Heineken Music Hall, find the huge center for interior design and furniture, Villa ArenA Woonmall.
The whole district has pockets of greenery and parkland, but the best for recreation and forest walks is the 410-acre (166-hectare) parkland surrounding the artificial lake Gaasperplas. In the Gaasperpark nature reserve, try horseback riding and watersports, such as canoeing, fishing and sailing. Typical for the Netherlands, there are many bicycle tracks. During summer, camp overnight in the park.
Time your visit to enjoy one of the festivals held regularly in Zuidoost in warmer months, showcasing everything from hip hop to jazz. Don’t miss the huge Kwaku festival which features football, performances by famed DJs and even literature awards.
Zuidoost is a 20-minute train ride from the center of Amsterdam.