It is really hard not to like Amsterdam!
This city is just charming with the canals, little streets, architecture which make the city unique!
It is well known that the best way to explore the city, it is with a bike. Just a little advice, take one at your size. Not like me, the one from the appart hotel was too big for me and the only way to stop was to throw myself out off the bike and I ended up with a giant bruise!
If it is raining, just go to the museums area. Between the Van Gogh museum or the Rijksmuseum you have plenty to do. It is better to plan it and buy the tickets online you will save a fair amount of time and queuing under the rain is never pleasant (for the Rijks it is here and for Van Gogh there). If you are lucky you might be able to do a picture in front of the “I am Amsterdam” sign (I didn’t do it, it was too crowded, I hope I will have more chance next time!).
If like me, you like Rembrandt, you should visit the Rembrandt House as well in the Jorden Burt area. Rembrandt was living and working in this impressive building. You will discover another part of his work, less known. A collection of 250 etchings is shown. It is just amazing. You can do a workshop where you are going to learn the technique he used, let see if the result is the same as the Master!
Then, go to the Begijnhof which is a vaulted path which leads to a stunning garden surrounded by XVIIth and XVIIIth buildings. You will see a medieval church and at the number 34 there is the oldest house of the town. When leaving the Begijnhof, you will end up on the Spui square which became the cultural place of Amsterdam where an old book fair is taking place every Friday and a contemporary art fair every Sunday.
The Netherlands are well known for their flowers and especially the tulips! You are not going to find any tulips fields in the middle of the city but if you want to see plenty of them just head to the flowers market. You will find plenty of tulips with many different colors but also bulbs, seeds…. a real colors explosion. The market is the oldest one in town and has been built on the water!
The Dam is the heart of the city with the Royal Palace. The square is big enough to welcome a big fairground, just for you to imagine the size of it!
The central station is really really impressive. The architect who designed it is the same as the Rijksmuseum.
Let’s talk about the Red light district. Honestly, I don’t really know what to say. You have to see it to believe it for sure but as a woman it makes me feel really uncomfortable to see women in the windows. You have to avoid it with children or you better have a good explanation even if I don’t see which one! No pictures for that part sorry!
There is a chinese district with the boudhic He Hua temple.
I love strolling around the trendy Jordaan area. You can find lovely shops, very nice cafes. You can stop at the “Café Chris” which is the oldest pub of the town. If you are a chocolate lover like me, I recommend to go to Urban Cacoa!
On a more emotional and historical touch but inescapable, the visit of the Anne Frank House. Honestly, it is hard to describe what you are feeling during the visit. You can’t help yourself by wondering what you would have felt if you were in her situation and the answer is it is impossible to know. You are a bit shaken after the visit but it is a must to do, the duty to remember is just so important.
Back to more lightness! I advise you to head to the Negen Straatjes area. I love Street Art and it is in this part of the city that you can see some and have an alternative tour of the city. Good for shopping too!
You have to go to the east side of the city and see Nemo, the biggest scientific museum of the Netherlands, made like a boat by the architec Renzo Piano who made the Pompidou Center in Paris ( for the little story he made my old office in Paris too!) or the Maritime museum next to where sit a replica of a three masts. Further, you will find a beautiful windmill and next to it the Brouwerij’t where you can test different home made beers. The place is usually quite busy but I definitely recommend you to go, so typical and the beers are really good! There is Entrepotdok as well which is an old big warehouse transformed in houses. The buildings are named after cities from Belgium and Netherlands.
To go to Amsterdam Noord, you have to take a free ferry behind the central station. Honestly, I haven’t been impressed by this part of the city but maybe it is just because I didn’t go or know the right spots! You have the Cinema museum in this part of town!
See you soon for new adventures!