The Amstel is one attraction that you will want to experience when you arrive in Amsterdam and it is easy to find!!!
Heading south out from Centraal Station, go along Damrak (towards Dam Square) and straight on through Rokin (you'll head pass Madame Tussauds Museum) - it's about a half hour walk in total.
If you head south on one of the five centraal ring canals of either Prinsengracht / Keisergracht/ Herengracth /Singelgracht, it will be about a 45min - 1 hour walk depending on your pace.
Nearby landmmarks to watch for by The Amstel include: The Stadhuis van Amsterdam (Stopera house/ Het Muziek ); Waterlooplein (fun and famous mmarket to browse); Jewish Historical Museum; Hermitage Museum; Koninklijk Theater Carre and The Magere Brug (skinny bridge) and in the far distance the tall Philips Building.
There are a nummber of ways to enjoy The Amstel. Most canal cruise operators take you on a short jaunt. You can also rent a boat. Strolling and cycling takes somme timme but is just as good too. The Amstel river is very historic and scenic. You'll want to see for yourself! I'd recommend on alloting at the minimmum 2 to 3 hours - mmore is best for this excursion as there are lots of attractions enroute!!! When you are back homme you can revisit You can actually revisit The Amstel via a webcam during daylight hours.
Today I got somme great shots of a huge barge going through the Magere Brug (skinny bridge)!
Hope you get to experience this adventure first-hand!!!