Amsterdam is well-known for being a city where the good times roll. It is, after all, Europes capital of hedonism. It cultivates an atmosphere for laughter and good times. Although many of the quirky shows, live music and bars can keep you entertained, another popular side of the city is its comedy clubs.
To a tourists’ surprise, watching stand up comedy in Amsterdam doesn’t have to be a problem. The language barrier is easily avoided as many of the venues we’ll discuss, offer comedy in English as well as Dutch. Plus, with this capital creating such a buzzing environment, comedians worldwide see it as a hotspot to tour.
So, with that in mind, we’re going to take a look at the top 8 best comedy clubs in Amsterdam so you can get your fix of fun.
1. Boom Chicago
Now into its 25th year of comedy, Boom Chicago is one of the most popular comedy clubs in Amsterdam. It offers many improv shows and sketches that have made more than a million people laugh. If you start your night here, you’re in good hands.
Built from more than a 100-year-old former cinema, this venue has been transformed into one of the capital’s finest venues. It offers strategic seating of 330 people around tables as well as an upstairs theatre and multiple breakout rooms, offices and studios.
Make the most of their impressive bar and get those necessary rounds in. With its high ceilings and original stained glass windows from 1913, you can take in the bar’s authenticity and (sensibly) drink pints of your choice.
Want some more activities to do in the Dutch Capital? Here’s our list of things to do in Amsterdam, at any month.
2. Comedy Café Amsterdam
Its international comedy shows make it ideal for any English-only speaking tourists. Watch world-renowned comedians such as Ardal O’Hanlon, Stephen K. Amos, Gina Yashere, Phill Jupitus, Al Pitcher, Tom Rhodes and many more.
As well as getting your day’s dose of jokes, there’s also delicious food at nearby restaurant, Nomad and cocktails on tap in the bar. With a unique location overlooking the view of the Amsterdam Harbour, you’re in for a hilarious night in a picturesque setting.
3. Toomler (Comedy Train)
Toomler, also referred to as Comedy Train, is a theatre café, filled by much-loved Comedy Train comedians. See them in action and be surprised and entertained until your heart’s content.
What is Comedy Train? Comedy Train is a hallmark of stand-up comedy in the Netherlands and has been for 25+ years. The idea behind it is to offer talent a stage to trial new ideas and lay the foundation for humour in the future theatres of the Netherlands.
Some of the most famous comedians started out as Toomlers. Authorities such as Joan Rivers, Mel Brooks and Danny Kaye gained the experience that served as the basis for their further career, all from a fairly small but now sought for, Yiddish comedy club.
Looking for a spot to have a few drinks after a busy day? Here’s our guide to the best bars in Amsterdam.
Paradiso is one of the longest-running comedy clubs in Amsterdam. Having been around for 50 years, it has since evolved into a popular pop venue, night club and cultural palace in one. At Paradiso, you’re not limited to what you might see, though comedy is, of course, regularly on the agenda. From stand-up comedy and live music to scientists leading discussions on quantum physics, Paradiso offers it all.
Similar to Paradiso, Melkweg is much more than just a comedy club. Here you’ll find live musical performances, cinematics and even the occasional small festivals. However, their comedy acts are definitely top-notch and one of their must-see features.
If you’re looking for something a little more comical than musical, easylaughs is a go-to. In a nutshell, they offer shows, workshops and classes, mainly run by students with a passion for performing. Easylaughs’ goal is not only to entertain but also to educate their audience.
If you fancy trying your hand at performing they hold their very own workshops and improvisation events too. There’s also a café with craft beers available, so you’ll be able to sip, socialise and smile – though, to avoid spillages, maybe not all at once!
7. The Comedy Embassy
Although not a specific venue, The Comedy Embassy combines some of the best comedy clubs we’ve already listed, to share the latest shows and offers, giving you discounted tickets. By combining a list of performances for venues like Boom Chicago, Comedy Café and De Prael Houthavens, you get access to some of the greatest stand-up English comedy in Amsterdam, starting from €15.
Witness much-loved house comedians including Tim van ‘t Hul, lovable hipster, Kor Hoebe and Pauly Russell, a self-proclaimed belligerent drunk Scottsman. You won’t be disappointed.
Looking for late-night activities? Here are some of the most interesting things you can do in Amsterdam at night.
8. Playground Comedy
Our final comedy club in Amsterdam is Playground Comedy. From cabaret and stand-up comedy to witty poets and tailor-made productions, Playground Comedy does exactly what it the name states. It gives comedians a place to experiment with their inner funny bones to create hilarious sketches.
If you want to get a taste of the kind of comedy you can expect, take a look at the various on-site videos. From Dutch comedians to English and other nationalities, their comedians cater to all languages.
Humour is super personal and not everything will make you laugh but with so many shows and great venues to explore, there will definitely be someone who can make you smirk and smile. We cannot recommend watching live comedy enough, it really is a great night out.
Whether you go to watch a stand-up comedian as an alternative way to start your usual night out, to top off a weekend away or just to try something different, it’s destined to end in amusement. Immerse yourself in the Dutch culture. Experience their sense of humour and gain a whole different outlook to this quirky city.