On May 25, Amsterdam's famous Red Light District became a smoke-free zone for cannabis users.
Under the new rules, people who smoke in public spaces in these areas will first receive a warning. If they do not take this into account, they will be sanctioned by a fine of 100 euros.
Smoking bans, restricted alcohol sales and stricter closing times to combat crowds and nuisance in the Red Light District
This means that cannabis use will no longer be permitted in outdoor public spaces in the city center and will be limited to coffee shops. The ban applies from Dam Square and extends to Damrak, Nieuwenmark to the Red Light District.
After years of complaints from locals about the savage behavior of many of the 18 million annual visitors, a crackdown has been enacted. Under the new rules, people who smoke in public spaces in these areas will first receive a warning. If they do not take this into account, they will be penalized with a fine of 100 euros.
In February, the municipality of Amsterdam announced its intention to restrict the consumption of cannabis in certain areas of the city. While the new rules also apply to residents of the city, this policy is primarily aimed at containing rambunctious tourists.
Over the years, Amsterdam's liberal policy towards cannabis and other so-called 'soft' drugs has had the effect of making several parts of the city unpalatable. Large crowds under influence affect the quality of life of the inhabitants.
For now, the outdoor areas of coffee shops are excluded from the smoking ban. But the authorities could consider "banning smoking on cafe terraces" if the problem is not resolved.