If you are staying for really short time like 1 day or two, Stay in Amsterdam
If You are staying longer like 3 and more days – I recommend the close cities. My Favourite is Alkmaar which is only 40 min train ride to Amsterdam – 12euros – RT.
The Hague is your second option to stay near Amsterdam, also accessible by the tram and have many things to do!
What to DO in Amsterdam ?
1- Red Light District
2- shopping – to be honest shopping in Amsterdam – is one of the best!! its like shoppers heaven
3- Van Gough Museum
4- Ann Frank House
6- The flower market
7- if you are a street art fan then its definitely heaven for you – not as much as berlin but its still beautiful!!
8- Vintage finds
9- Get Cycling
10- Be a local – check out random bar
What to do in ALkmaar?
1- Go to one of the Oldest Cheese Market in the World which is in Alkmaaar, its held on Fridays April 3rd untill september 4th, from 10 am untill 12.30 pm in the city center
Check out the town center which is one of the most adorable places I’ve seen
there are many things to do in Alkmaar that could occupy your full day after the Market
2- Visit the Church Grote Sint Laurenskerk
3- Check out the Beatles Musuem
4-Check out the beer musuem – the seating outside is one of the nicest places actually, they also have very wide selection of beers all brewed in Holland – over 86 types of beers – more info below
5- check out the windmills , hike a bit – Molen van Groot (Piet)
6- and my least and favorite- visit the best art gallery in Holland! and learn about the history of Dutch artists
7- Check out local boutiques – more details in this website for off the beaten path shops.
8- Must have Fries from the street food or there is small shop with very long line!!! but it is super amazing.