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“Immaculate campsite for city site seeing”

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Gaasper Camping Amsterdam
Ranked #38 of 226 Specialty Lodging in Amsterdam
Dorchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
43 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Immaculate campsite for city site seeing”
Reviewed April 15, 2013

We have just spent an excellent 3 nights at this site, which is well signpost from the motorway. The staff were extremely friendly, and the site including the toilet block (with toilet paper) was warm and immaculate. Each pitch has its own water and electricity, some with hard standing, and are most separated with high hedges. It was easy to pitch the caravan with a mover, but could have been tight without. There was free wifi but I failed to pick it up. It was a 5-10 min walk to the metro, after buying the tickets at the campsite, then 10-20 mins to the centre of Amsterdam. We avoided queues at some museums by buying the tickets at the campsite. We spent 3 days walking, boating on the canals and in the museums. Although we had taken our bikes, we didn't ride into Amsterdam as it rained hard for one day and on/off for the second day, but it looks straightforward as long as you have a serious chain lock.

Room Tip: They ask if you have a mover on your caravan, so may pitch you on a more open pitch if you haven'...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank AnnHeather
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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194 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed September 20, 2012

This camping site is located in the south-eastern outskirts of Amsterdam, and it is easily reached by Metro from a couple of prominent stations in the city centre. From the Main Station it is about a 20 minutes ride, followed by an easy 5 minutes walk from the station “Gaasperplas” to the actual camping site. Watch out, however, to walk in the right direction while leaving the Metro station, because there are no signposts indicating where to go. When you exit the Metro, turn left and follow the bicycle lane leading past a snack bar. Soon you’ll reach a parking lot. Cross it and there you are. Easy and comfy.

Once you approach the camping entrance you’ll be very likely spotted by a (juvenile) watchman (probably on bike), who is guarding the premises against unsolicited entry. He’ll give you a form which you fill in and hand it over to the reception. You’ll pay right upon registration (2 people on foot with one tent is 17,50 Euros per night in 2012) and get a receipt plus (probably the most important document for the coming days) a small green card, which you are supposed to carry with you at all times. Without card no re-entry to the site. You’ll be even asked to produce it when you purchase shower coins in the shop or in the restaurant. I have not been able to figure out, who the hell would try to sneak illegally into the camping site – and then buy a shower coin for a splash. Honestly, if someone wants to enter the site illegally, he’ll just wait for the guard to be busy dealing with a long row of waiting caravans – and go in. Probably the last thing such a person thinks of is to refresh him.

After payment you’ll be told to present yourself in front of the reception, where one of three (or 4?) bicycle born watchmen/advisors/guards will pick you up eventually and escort you to your designated place, giving you a slight feeling of Camp Warehouse. Not bad if you are on foot, loaded probably with a heavy backpack, because you try to keep up to the speed of a cycling guy, who is about to lead you to the right pitch. After a last warning to stay put there, you are free to deal with your business of setting-up your tent.

The site itself consists of several lawns and camper parking areas which are pleasantly separated from each other by bushes and hedges. The lawns are perfectly trimmed and little camping sub-sections are marked with red and white banderols. Also, there must be at least one dust bin for every single camper present on the site. Toilettes, showers and washing facilities are sufficient – in number and cleanliness, and are scattered over the site.

This site obviously caters to families and people who like clear-cut structures and regulations. As a result of that you will have the opportunity to survey a cross-European middle class life, with all its routines and rituals. The majority however seem to be visitors from Italy, Spain and France, who stick to themselves. Inter-cultural socializing is seemingly not commonly practiced among the visitors.
If you are young and out to spend a week partying – both in town and on the camping site, this clearly is not the place to head for. For this purpose you have to address the Camping “Zeeburg” (see description Zeeburg). If you’d come back here (Gaasper) in the evening, perhaps stoned out of your mind, and started your ghetto blaster for a final round of Curt Cobain, you’d be immediately evicted by the watchmen crew.
For people with children however, the place is great. Nothing to worry, no deep water, no nearby highways – just relaxing. There is more than enough space for every camper, so you don’t get on each other’s nerves too easily. The restaurant seems reasonably priced, with the exemption of beer. A pint is 3, 75 €, but a visit to a local supermarket can avoid this expense. There is an open-air sitting area, but the kitchen closes at 9:30 pm (in peak season!) At 11 pm things get calm at Gaasper Camping.

Next morning is here and you are hungry, longing for a refreshing shower, and this is where – at least for me – the dark side of this site starts. It is 8:30 am, the reception is still closed, but the shop is already open. You hop there to grab some bread (which is plentiful there) – and you wonder, why the people working there are looking so pissed already at this early stage of the day. All of them, including their boss – and not only once. I felt, it was a little bit like a shut up buy and [--] off atmosphere. The cashier lady scrutinized every single banknote with the help of a black light, and when I turned up to pay, I had only a 2 Euro coin which I put smilingly between my teeth to indicate that it was a real one. I should not have done that because the lady’s face went from pissed to outright angry. “Are you sure it is real?” she barked at me with a look that could kill – no nonsense here and a great good morning encounter. Asking her, if she has previously worked in a military prison I walked away.
Next morning I hopped into a shower, looking forward to a splash. I inserted the coin and then happened – nothing. The machine took it and left me standing dry and naked. I dressed up again and went to the shop/restaurant/reception area to get my lost coin replaced and inform them about the snag, when I stumbled over a sour looking shopkeeper. I told him I had a problem and he could help me to solve it. I narrated the story to him, expecting to hear “oh sorry man here we go. Take a new coin; we’ll inspect the machine later on.”
Instead of that he told me, that this was not his business, he had other things to do and after all he had nothing to do with the camping site. I thought “hello, this guy is running in and out of every premise on the site, owning the shop and the restaurant (where he sells shower coins), and tells me he has nothing to do with all that.” I let him know that even if he was not immediately concerned with repairing machines and what not, it would have been a sign of customer related friendliness to help first and settle it, when the reception opened. He decided not to do this, and I left it that way. My senses however where sharpened now and I recognized a couple of shortcomings on that seemingly perfect site. Above all, were over-regulations and the continued sour faces of some of the camping staff that make one feel slightly guilty and unwelcome –with the exception of the reception ladies. They do a great job, in the face of 20-30 inpatient people cramped in the reception and eager to check-in or leave. I asked myself: “what do you expect?” and I decided that my factors for feeling well on a camping site were: a little less control fetishism, a little more dedication to address the customers’ real needs and the will to improvise if the need arises. I can live with some structural short-comings if the vibe is positive. Or the other way round, what’s the use of a perfectly organised and managed site if you do not feel well there? At the end it is a matter of personal priorities.
So what would be my conclusion?
It was okay for me as a base for exploring Amsterdam, but not more. No real social life, unless one belongs to a cluster of campers with similar cultural background. I’d go there again only if another Camping site was full.

Pros:
- Connexion to the city and a very short walking distance from the Metro station “Gaasperplas” to the actual camping-site
- A lot of camping space (which you are not allowed to choose from freely)
- Cleanliness
- Reservation option (even for tents)

Cons:
- Camp-like rules and regulations
- Feeling of being a burden for the crew
- A certain unfriendliness (by some of the staff)

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank Oliver U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed September 9, 2012

I live in Amsterdam myself and do go camping with friends once in a (long) while.
I went to check the facility in preparation for a camping weekend and met the elderly reception lady (in her fifties or something). To be honest, I have never been treated that way anywhere like I was by the elderly woman at the camping. She apparently does not have any clue how to run a hospitality place, unless this is a family business, its hard to imagine any manager employing a person like that.

If you are a tourist and looking for a place to relax in totality, you may consider choosing some other location. A true sense of decency and hospitality is unknown in the camping!!

Nevertheless, the camping is conveniently located close to a metro station that runs in about 20 minutes to the center of the vibrant city of Amsterdam. If you are the night type, there are night busses that run after the metro shuts down from around midnight. The night busses take about 45 minutes to drop you at the camping site or to town for four bucks one way.

There is a supermarket on site but may lack some essentials. The nearest alternative isn't that far either. One stop with the metro on a station called Kraienest. Regular supermarkets are a lot cheaper there.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled solo
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank R S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Eastbourne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
816 reviews
66 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 270 helpful votes
Reviewed September 27, 2011

It's only a small "but" - The Camp Site itself is excellent. Well maintained, super showers, friendly and helpful staff and ideally situated to get into the city via the Metro (get travel tickets from Reception) When we were there it was quiet and this may have contributed to the "small but"
Most of the showers in the block nearest our pitch were locked shut. Toilets had no paper and the camp shop shut at 12.30!! BRING YOUR OWN if you are intending to arrive later on. The restaraunt/cafe was closed for the season and the hotel near the Metro Station was quite expensive for what it had to offer. There was a Fast Food stall outside the station and this was "cheap and cheerful".

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank PARIS522
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bern, Switzerland
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed August 9, 2011

We went to this campsite with a couple of friends to spent a week in Amsterdam... And it turned out to be the best trip ever!
We were received by a friendly man, who was very helpful and provided us with all the information we needed throughout the week.
The toilets were clean and they have good showerfacilities.
We experienced a great ambiance all around the campsite, with not to many unhospitable rules or campguards as seen all over France for example...
The staff were very friendly people and a we got a big spacious site to put up the tents...
Too bad the weather wasn't all good, or we could have gone for a swim in the Gaasperplas-lake just around the corner.
Best of all, Amsterdam Centre is just a 10 min metro-ride away...!
We had a great stay and wil definately come again! Most recommended!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank John V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ipswich, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed August 9, 2011

I've been going to Gaasper Camping for the last 5 years with my partner and sometimes some friends too and have always had a good time there. We have been in our large and small tent for long weekends mostly but have had a couple of 7 day breaks too. We visit at least once per year, sometimes twice.

The facilities are spotless at all times and no creepy crawlies or spiders which is a big plus for me. You will need your own supplies of toilet roll but taking your own prevents sheets of it kicking around the floor!

The water supply in the showers is always hot but you must remember to purchase shower tokens. The same applies for washing up or laundry (or any hot water needed).

The site does have strict guidelines and rules which can feel a little unwelcoming at first but it does keep the rif-raf at bay and ensures that everyone is treated exactly the same.

The reception staff are very accomodating and helpful but do not try to check out early as this goes against the process and causes upset to both parties (you will not receive your passport back until they physically see the car ready to go. This doesn't help when there is always a que in reception and you are pushed for travel time).

All in all, the staff do a great job of running a very busy, very large site. I never go anywhere else and I always look forward to going back.

Room Tip: Make sure you leave plenty of time to check in or out.
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank lisajanenorris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed August 3, 2011

We stayed as two friend with a small tent and a car. We pitched our tent in the general area and parked nearby in a cordonned off area for cars. We didn't have any problems with staff, and when we made requests for information etc from reception the man behind the counter was very helpful. You can buy travel tickets from them.

Main gripe is the toilet/shower block which is definitely sub-standard in comparison to many places in Europe. Toilets were badly lit and no toilet paper provided or hand dryers - I know it's camping but most places will give you that! You also had to PAY 80 cents for 5 minutes in the shower. Even to wash dishes with hot water you had to pay for it. At E23.50 a night for two people, I would expect nicer wash facilities.

They did have a shop with most essentials and a bakery. There was a bar/cafe area too but we didn't brave it. Much easier to go into Amsterdam. Travel into amsterdam was very easy as the tram line stops closeby (pleasant 10 min walk though park area). But note that there is a replacement bus service part of the way into central Amsterdam all summer (until Sept 2011 I think). Total journey (tram + replacement bus) probably about 50 mins.

Generally an adequate campsite but the shower block could certainly be better.

Room Tip: Bring your own toilet paper!
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Nicki D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Gaasper Camping Amsterdam

Property: Gaasper Camping Amsterdam
Address: Loosdrechtdreef 7 | Gaasperplas, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Location: The Netherlands > North Holland Province > Amsterdam
Amenities:
Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly)
Hotel Style:
Ranked #38 of 226 Specialty Lodging in Amsterdam
Number of rooms: 323
Also Known As:
Gaasper Camping Amsterdam Hotel Amsterdam

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