If you are planning on travelling to any major city and are looking for cheap things to do, you should consider a “Free Walking Tour”.
How are they free?
Simple, the tour guides work for tips. It’s great for you because you tip based on how well you think they did.
When we started our year of travel last June, Erin and I kicked it off with a couple of party weeks in Croatia. Here’s a picture of us on a yacht
After Croatia we went to Barcelona for a few days and then to Amsterdam. Both Barcelona and Amsterdam were last minute trips based on cheap flights so we didn’t have anything planned for sightseeing or day trips.
The hostel workers in Amsterdam suggested that we take a “Free Walking Tour” of the city.
We had never heard of a “Free Walking Tour” but “Free” sounds great to people who are planning to travel for a year on savings alone so we went for it.
We had a choice of two different tours from with the company the hostel suggested called Sandeman’s New Europe Amsterdam.
One was called the “FREE Amsterdam Tour”, it ran during the day, cost nothing up front and you tip at the end of the tour based on how well you think the guide did. The other tour (by the same company) was a nighttime tour called the “The Red Light District Tour” which costs 14 Euros up front (and you are still supposed to tip at the the back end).
We wanted to see more of the history of Amsterdam properly so we went with the daytime tour. We met up with a travel guide named Tim and walked the city with him for over three hours.
(Tim’s profile from Sandman’s site)
Tim gave a great quick history of Amsterdam and a lot of information about the legality of drugs (come on you know you wonder about it). He even showed us a place that will test the quality of any marijuana you bring in for FREE!
Erin and I were both really impressed with the quality of the tour and the amount of so we tipped Tim 10 Euros apiece. In fact, we were SO happy with it that we decided to go on the night tour of the red light district.
“The Red Light District Tour” was given by a different guy. He was from Scotland and I can’t remember his name (and he doesn’t have a profile on Sandeman’s site) but we loved his tour as well. He was hilarious and he knew more about Amsterdam than most locals! Another great tour.
Our experience in Amsterdam got us hooked on free walking tours and now, every time we travel to a major city, we look to see if we can catch one.
We have been on free walking tours in Amsterdam, London, Budapest and Buenos Aires and every experience has been amazing.
What you need to know about Free Walking Tours
- Tour guides work for tips
- Bring something to eat and drink (3 hours of walking makes you hungry and thirsty)
- Links to Free Walking Tour Companies:
Sandeman’s New Europe (recommended)
Free Tours By Feet