If you’re gearing up to cheer on your favorite runners at the Amsterdam Marathon, you’re in for a treat! The city’s iconic race offers not only a challenge to the runners but also a visual spectacle for spectators.
As you cheer on your runners, you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy the breathtaking scenery that Amsterdam is famous for.
The race course covers some outstanding locations, including the Olympic Stadium, where the start and finish lines are. It takes you through landmarks like the Rijksmuseum, the Heineken Experience, along the picturesque Amstel River, and the beautiful Vondelpark.
In this guide, we’ll look at the best spots to catch all the action and take in the spectacular views along the marathon route.
Before we dive into those, I’d like us to take a closer look at the course highlights and iconic landmarks.
Course Highlights And Iconic Landmarks.
The marathon course takes participants through Amsterdam’s city center, passing by several iconic landmarks that are worth exploring.
The marathon starts and finishes in front of the grandstand at the Olympic Stadium, a historic venue with over 85 years of history. You can access the grandstand and bleachers for free.
Runners will pass through the Rijksmuseum, a famous passageway connecting Amsterdam’s city center to the southern part of the city.
It’s a unique experience as the museum houses renowned works of art by Dutch masters like Rembrandt, Van Gogh, and Vermeer.
This is Amsterdam’s largest city park and one of the most famous parks in the Netherlands.
Located near major museums like the Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk Museum, and Van Gogh Museum, Vondelpark is a popular spot for both locals and tourists. During the marathon, runners go through Vondelpark twice.
The route follows a section of the Olympic route along the Amstel River, passing by grand mansions and windmills.
This scenic stretch offers panoramic views and a glimpse of daily life along the river. You can also see the Arena, the home stadium of Ajax football team, in the distance.
Runners on one side of the river can spot others on the opposite bank.
Zuidas Business District
Known for its high-rise offices and apartment buildings, this part of the city has a changing skyline that provides a stunning backdrop.
The Zuidas route forms a small circle, making it a great place to watch the runners multiple times and offer your support.
Now, let’s redirect our focus to those best spots to capture all the excitement along the course.
The BEST Spectator Spots Along The Amsterdam Marathon Route
From The Start Line At The Olympic Stadium
The Olympic Stadium is the epicenter of the marathon, hosting both the start and finish. You’ll witness the excitement of the race’s commencement and the emotional triumph of the finishers, all from one location.
As the starting point for all race distances (5K/8K/21K/42K), the Olympic Stadium buzzes with energy. You can feel the runners’ anticipation and determination as they prepare to tackle the course.
To secure a good spot in the covered stands, plan to arrive at the Olympic Stadium well in advance. This will give you ample time to find a comfortable seat and soak in the atmosphere as the anticipation builds.
The covered stands offer shelter from the elements, ensuring you stay dry and comfortable throughout the event. Whether it’s rain or shine, you can enjoy the race without worrying about the weather.
How To Get To The Olympic Stadium
I highly recommend using the metro for your commute, especially due to the limited parking spaces near Sporthallen Zuid (Burgerweeshuispad 54, 1076 EP Amsterdam).
Please be aware that a significant portion of the city will have road closures on Marathon Sunday, and there will be restricted tram and bus services in the central area of Amsterdam.
The Amstelveenseweg metro station is an 8-minute walk from the Olympic Stadium.
Just catch a bus or train and follow the marked pedestrian route to easily access the Olympic Stadium.
Next up, head over to Vondelpark, one of Amsterdam’s peaceful green spots. Runners will pass through this big 47-hectare green area twice during the race.
You can see them when they’re just starting, at around 2km (1.2 miles) in, and then again when they’re coming back, fatigue setting in at 40 km (24.9 miles).
Pick a cozy spot on the grass, bring some snacks, and enjoy the natural beauty while you cheer on the runners.
Vondelpark is like a comforting place for the tired runners making their way back to the stadium. That’s why it’s a perfect spot to share your cheers and give them that extra motivation they need to reach the finish line.
How To Get To Vondelpark
To get there, just take the metro to Vijzelgracht.
Kindly take note that on Sunday, October 15, Metro station Amstelveenseweg will be temporarily closed for departing passengers from 10:00 to 18:00 hours.
If you’re at the Olympic Stadium during this time, don’t fret. You can easily walk to Station Zuid, where you can catch the metro and train.
It takes about 30 minutes to walk from the stadium to Station Zuid.
At the 4 km (2.5 mile) mark, the runners pass through the magnificent Rijksmuseum at Stadhouderskade. You’ll see them again at 38 km (23.6 miles) on their way back.
This location provides an excellent viewing spot away from the bustling crowds.
Between 6 and 9 km (3.7-5.6 miles)
Runners will pass through the striking Zuidas area between 6 and 9 km (3.7-5.6 miles). Keep an eye out for them in the Beethovenstraat—you have a chance to catch them twice.
The 13 km (8 mile) Point: President Kennedylaan
At the 13 km (8 mile) mark, runners take a sharp turn at the end of President Kennedylaan. This is where they catch their first glimpse of the RAI and make a U-turn, offering a great opportunity to see them twice
Between 14 And 26 km (8.7-16.2 miles): Along the Amstel River
Starting at the 14 km (8.7 miles) mark, the runners enjoy a scenic stretch along the beautiful Amstel River. During this 12 km (7.5 miles) stretch, runners reach the halfway point of their journey and start heading back.
Look out for a First Aid point at 16 km (9.9 miles), and there’s even a Mini Marathon just before the first marathoners arrive.
To reach this section, take the RAI metro and park at P15 or P16 Europaboulevard.
Ouderkerk aan de Amstel: Alongside Amstel Rivier
As the marathon runners make a turn across Brug Oranjebaan in Ouderkerk aan de Amstel, you’ll find several charming restaurants where you can relax while you wait for their arrival.
You can also wait along the Amstel River if you’d like, but keep in mind that this part of the course is quite narrow. It’s better to find a spot where you can either sit or stand a short distance away to give the runners more space.
While there’s no metro here, you can find paid parking at Amstelparking.
The Amstel Business Park
After the Amstel River stage, the runners cover 5 km (3.1 miles) through Amstel Business Park, offering lively music, entertainment, and plenty of spectators.
Between 32 And 37 km (19.9-23 miles): The Home Stretch
This section is the toughest part of the marathon, and your cheering presence will be greatly appreciated!
Just a bit further along, at the 33 km (20.5-mile) point, you’ll find the Galileïplantsoen hosting a second Mini Marathon and a First Aid point.
The nearest metro station is also Amstel.
As the marathon course nears its conclusion, there’s a brief passage under the Wibaustraat at the 37 km mark.
Cheer on the runners as they climb up and over the Torontobrug, heading towards the Vondelpark. You’ll find the Polar DJ booth, which adds a rhythmic beat to the marathon atmosphere.
The closest metro station here is Weesperplein.
Where Can I Watch A Live Broadcast Of The Amsterdam Marathon?
The international elite race of the TCS Amsterdam Marathon will be broadcast live worldwide, allowing fans from 190 countries to tune in and watch the action.
You can catch the race live on various channels, including SuperSport Africa, Eurosport, Flo Athletics, ESPN Sur, Discovery+, L’Equipe 24, and Eurosport Asia.
The race kicks off at 09:00 a.m., Amsterdam local time, so be sure to check your local listings to catch all the excitement!
Where Can I Stay Near The Amsterdam Marathon Start Line (Olympic Stadium)?
If you’re looking to stay near the start line at the Olympic Stadium for the Amsterdam Marathon, here are some recommended places to consider:
- Located within 2 km (1.2 miles) of the start line.
- Offers rooms with a 49″ HD flat-screen TV, minibar, and coffee/tea facilities.
- Free Wi-Fi in public areas.
- Features an on-site restaurant, lounge, and terrace.
- Accessible from the airport by train or taxi (15 minutes).
- Less than 200 meters (0.1 miles) from the Hilton Hotel and a 30-minute walk from the start line.
- 5-star hotel with air-conditioned rooms, tea and coffee-making facilities, and modern bathrooms.
- The De Kersentuin restaurant serves French cuisine, and there’s a cozy bar.
- Around a 15-minute walk from the PC Hooftstraat shopping area.
- Located within 300 meters (0.2 miles) of the start line.
- Offers express check-in and check-out, non-smoking rooms, and free Wi-Fi.
- Features a garden, bar, and restaurant.
- Popular for cycling, with bike hire available.
- Van Gogh Museum and Moco Museum are 3.5 km (2.2 miles) away.
- Situated in the Oud Zuid district, only 100 metres (0.06 miles) from Vondelpark.
- Free Wi-Fi is available.
- A 21-minute walk from the start line and 300 metres (0.2 miles) from the Amstelveenseweg tram stop.
- Offers direct links to Museumplein and Amsterdam Central Railway Station.
- Exclusive PC Hooftstraat is 20 minutes’ walk away.
- Offers a new hotel/apartment concept with spacious design apartments.
- On-site restaurant, sauna, and fitness facilities.
- Apartments have a fully equipped kitchen, a living room, and a luxurious bathroom.
- Located within 300 metres (0.2 miles) of the nearest metro station and the Olympic stadium.
- Opposite the hotel, you’ll find a direct tram to Museum Square and the City Centre.
- Amsterdamse bos and Vondelpark are 1.5 km (0.9 miles) away, and the Zuidas, WTC, and RAI are within 2 km (1.2 miles).
These options provide a range of choices to suit your preferences and budget while being conveniently located for the Amsterdam Marathon.
Tips For Navigating Race Day
Now that you know where to find the best views, here are some handy tips to make the most of your marathon day:
- Arrive Early: Many spectators have the same idea, so arrive a bit early to secure your ideal spot.
- Bring Snacks And Water: You might be out there for a while, so pack some snacks and stay hydrated.
- Dress Comfortably: Wear comfortable clothing and shoes, and don’t forget your camera!
- Support the Runners: Be the loudest cheerleader! Runners draw energy from the crowd, so shout out encouraging words.
- Stay Informed: Check the marathon’s official website for route maps and updates to plan your day effectively.
So, there you have it—the best spots to catch all the adrenaline-pumping action of the Amsterdam Marathon.
Get ready to be swept up in the excitement, and remember to embrace the spirit of unity and celebration that defines this incredible event.