New Amsterdam atlas gets an English-language release

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Some 881 thousand bicycles exist in Amsterdam, and 1,259 trams criss-cross the city's Leidseplein on a daily basis, according to an English-language version of a fact book profiling the Dutch capital. The book, Atlas of Amsterdam, was translated from De Bosatlas van Amsterdam, which has sold over 30,000 copies since its release last fall.

The book not only profiles current aspects of the city, but also provides a historical context for those interested in Amsterdam. Newcomers to the city might be surprised to discover that Amsterdam has 176 coffee shops selling marijuana, a far cry from the 350 that were in the city in 1995. Meanwhile, the oldest retailer in the city is W. H. van der Meulen, a Geldersekade pharmacy that first opened its doors in 1696.

Some 70 shops in the city opened at least a century ago, the book states.

“The Atlas of Amsterdam tells you everything you always wanted to know about the city, as well as things you never knew you wanted to know," a statement from the book's publisher, Noordhoff Uitgevers, says. The Atlas is organised by topic, with the aim of explaining how the people of Amsterdam live and work, what they believe and how they enjoy their leisure time.

In honor of the English edition, people residing in Amsterdam, and originating from the 180 nations represented there, will soon receive a copy of the atlas as a present. It normally sells for just under 30 euros, and is available at several retailers, including national chain Bruna.