The city is located in the province of North Holland in the west of the country but is not its capital, which is Haarlem.The metropolitan area comprises much of the northern part of the Randstad, one of the larger conurbations in Europe, with a population of approximately 7 million.The main reasons for the uprising were the imposition of new taxes, the tenth penny, and the religious persecution of Protestants by the newly introduced Inquisition.The revolt escalated into the Eighty Years' War, which ultimately led to Dutch independence.
The Amsterdam Stock Exchange, the oldest stock exchange in the world, is located in the city center.
Amsterdam's main attractions, including its historic canals, the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, the Stedelijk Museum, Hermitage Amsterdam, the Anne Frank House, the Amsterdam Museum, its red-light district, and its many cannabis coffee shops draw more than 5 million international visitors annually.
After the floods of 11, locals near the river Amstel built a bridge over the river and a dam across it, giving its name to the village: "Aemstelredamme".
In October 2008, historical geographer Chris de Bont suggested that the land around Amsterdam was being reclaimed as early as the late 10th century.
This does not necessarily mean that there was already a settlement then, since reclamation of land may not have been for farming—it may have been for peat, for use as fuel.