I spent 2 months in Amsterdam over the summer. Overall enjoyed the experience but wouldn’t return to work.
I stayed in about 5 different hostels (recommend Cocomama) which were great for socialising and met some amazing people, however they were some of the most expensive I’ve ever stayed in, paying 40-60 euros a night. I stayed at the “nicer” hostels but still very expensive.
Nightlife was very good – great bars and clubs, some of which are overrun by loud drunk tourists but the majority of the ones I went to were okay. Just be prepared for how tall all the locals are, I’ve never felt so short in my life on a night out.
One of the parts I really enjoyed was cycling everywhere. I bought a second hand bike from a market for 50 euros and could easily get around the city. Felt very safe and almost everyone else was cycling. Could get to most places within a 15 minutes cycle.
I worked out of a Spaces co-working space. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend as it was very corporate. The WeWork there might be a better option (or cafes if on a tighter budget).
Central Amsterdam is very busy. I didn’t enjoy walking around the central area by the train station, particularly on weekends. Loads of tourists, stag dos, drunk people etc. Outside of that small central area, Amsterdam is a beautiful city with some amazing parks (e.g. Vondelpark), canals and scenery. I recommend some of the boat trips they do along the canals.
Easy to get around outside of Amsterdam too, train network is very efficient and Eurostar now goes to Amsterdam. I did a few day trips, Utrecht being my favourite and very easy to get to.
Amsterdam is not a cheap city, do not live here for a few months unless you have a decent income. I probably spent ~2.5k euros a month and I would say I was being fairly careful with money (minus the hostels and co-working space).
I always felt extremely safe and the locals English was exceptional, I was shocked at how good it was. Dutch people seemed friendly but slightly closed off (not surprising with the number of tourists they get). I struggled to make any local friends.
A note about smoking weed, other drugs etc. which Amsterdam is fairly well known for. I didn’t actually do any of this and didn’t feel left out at all. You’ll still have a lot of fun doing other activities there.
I’d recommend other places over Amsterdam in Europe, my favourite being Madrid and Lisbon so far.