The next page is solely intended for informational purposes. It is in no way intended to encourage the usage of cannabis, marijuana or any other narcotic substance.
Amsterdam is, due to its liberal soft drugs policies, known worldwide as the capital of the cannabis culture. The city is notorious and famous for the outright sale, and the free use, of cannabis products. While some experience the coffee shops as an annoying side effect of the Dutch drug policies, others will praise it as an open and tolerant characteristic of the city.
Research by the municipality of Amsterdam shows that about 23% of the tourists who come to Amsterdam will visit a coffee shop during their stay.
Cannabis and coffee shops walking tours
Take an in-depth look into the world of cannabis in Amsterdam. Learn about its legalization and history, and discover the coffee shops that sell the highest quality, cheapest ganja, with cultural and historical discoveries:
Coffee shops are alcohol free places where soft drugs (marijuana, hashish and cannabis) is allowed to be sold and consumed. There are over 160 coffee shops in Amsterdam. Most of them are located in the center of the city.
Most coffee shops have a menu. This is often like a book on the bar from which customers can choose from a variety of weed, hash, marijuana or cannabis. Here you'll find an overview of the assortment, such as prepared joints, 'space cakes', pure weed and various water pipes. Furthermore, the taste of the product is indicated and how strong it is.
The following rules apply to coffee shops in Amsterdam:
Anyone who is at least 18 years of age is allowed to buy and consume cannabis in coffee shops in Amsterdam. Sale of cannabis to persons under 18 is prohibited. To even step inside a coffee shop you must be at least 18 years of age. Also tourists can still visit coffee shops in Amsterdam. You have to be able to show I.D.
Sales of large quantities of cannabis to coffee shop customers is prohibited. People may buy up to 5 grams per day.
It is only allowed to buy soft drugs in coffee shops. It is illegal to buy drugs on the street.
You may smoke your purchased soft drugs both inside and outside the coffee shop. However, inside the coffee shop is the most common - and acceptable place - to smoke cannabis.
Coffee shops should not be confused with the regular catering industry. In hotels, cafes, bars and restaurants it's prohibited to use drugs. Although it is very uncommon, the owner of a cafe, bar or restaurant may allow the use of soft drugs in his/her establishment.
It is very important to keep in mind that the weed, hashish, marijuana and cannabis in the coffee shops of Amsterdam may be much stronger than most visitors to the city are used to. Therefore it's better not to choose the strongest one the menu right away. After all, what is normal for an everyday user, may be too much for a beginner. This could really ruin an evening.
For the same reason, it is better not to consume already prepared joints and 'space cakes' if you are not sure whether you can handle it. The amount of cannabis that these products contain varies, and sometimes this can be quite a lot. If you are unsure, please ask the staff. They will often have no problems to give you advice about this.
Coffee shops may not sell hard drugs. Coffee shops who get involved in hard drugs (permit the use of hard drugs), will irreversibly lose their license. That's the reason why hard drugs cannot to be found in the coffee shops of Amsterdam.
Sometimes hard drugs is sold on the street. All hard drugs and the sale of soft drugs on the street is strictly prohibited and punishable by law. Moreover, it can be very dangerous because these drugs are often of poor quality.
Page last updated: Thursday 14 September 2023
Frequently asked questions about coffeeshops & drugs in Amsterdam
Below is an overview of frequently asked questions about coffeeshops and drug use in Amsterdam.
What is a coffeeshop?
Coffeeshops are alcohol-free establishments where soft drugs (include hash and marihuana) are sold and consumed.
Are (international) tourists allowed to enter coffeeshops?
Yes, everyone aged 18 and above is currently allowed to enter coffeeshops and purchase cannabis in Amsterdam. Tourists can continue to visit coffeeshops in Amsterdam, also after April 2022.
How much cannabis may be sold/purchased in a coffeeshop?
Selling large quantities of cannabis to coffeeshop customers is prohibited. Individuals are permitted to purchase a maximum of 5 grammes a day.
How old do you have to be to smoke cannabis in the Netherlands?
A minimum of 18 years old. ID is obligatory.
How old do you have to be to enter a coffeeshop?
18 years old. Selling cannabis to those under 18 years old is prohibited, as is allowing those under 18 years of age to enter the coffeeshop Legitimize yourself is required.
Where is it permitted to buy cannabis?
The purchase of cannabis is only permitted at coffeeshops.
Is it illegal to purchase cannabis on the street?
Yes, it is only permitted to purchase cannabis in coffeeshops.
Is it permitted to smoke cannabis in locations other than coffeeshops?
In a coffeeshop is the most common and accepted place to smoke cannabis. Other restaurants, cafes and bars do not allow this and the smell of a joint is often not appreciated. Although it us uncommon, the owner of a pub, bar or café may permit the use of cannabis in their establishment.
Is it permitted to smoke cannabis outside (in public places)?
Yes. Although the smell of a joint is often not appreciated.
What percentage of tourists visit a coffeeshop during their stay in Amsterdam?
Research conducted by the City of Amsterdam indicates that ±23% of tourists who come to Amsterdam also visit a coffeeshop during their stay.
What are soft drugs?
The Netherlands Opium Act differentiates between hard drugs and soft drugs. Soft drugs are those which the Dutch government have designated as carrying an acceptable risk. Soft drugs include hash, marihuana, sleep-inducing drugs and sedatives.
Are coffeeshops allowed to sell hard drugs?
No. Coffeeshops involved in the trade or consumption of hard drugs will irrevocably lose their license. Therefore, hard drugs are not to be found in Amsterdam's coffeeshops.
Are coffeeshops open during Christmas (24 dec. - 26 dec.)?
Most coffeeshops in the centre of Amsterdam are open all year round. Also during Christmas.
Are dogs allowed in coffeeshops in Amsterdam?
Dogs are allowed in some coffeeshops in Amsterdam. The dog policy varies from coffeeshop to coffeeshop. Unfortunately, we don't have a list of coffeeshops where dogs are permitted.
Where in Amsterdam is the coffeeshop of Mike Tyson?
The Tyson 2.0 coffeeshop owned by the legendary American boxer Mike Tyson is located at Spuistraat 222, in the centre of Amsterdam: https://coffeeshoptyson.com/