You can get information, or just meet people, by visiting COC, Rozenstraat 14 (tel. 020/626-3087; www.cocamsterdam.nl), the Amsterdam branch of the Dutch lesbian and gay organization. On the premises are a daytime cafe serving coffee and quiche, a meeting space for special-interest groups, weekend discos (mainly men Fri, women Sat), and a special ethnic evening called Strange Fruit on Sunday. The Gay and Lesbian Switchboard (tel. 020/623-6565; www.switchboard.nl), open daily from 10am to 10pm, can provide you with all kinds of information and advice. Call AIDS Infolijn (tel. 0900/204-2040) for info on AIDS.
You shouldn't have much trouble finding information about gay and lesbian bars and clubs because they're well publicized. The free biweekly listings magazine Shark is a great source of cultural information, in particular for the offbeat and alternative scenes, and comes with a centerfold pullout, titled Queer Fish, which has excellent lesbian and gay listings. Gay News Amsterdam and Gay & Night, competing monthly magazines in both Dutch and English, are available free in gay establishments around the city.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.