Lets start with a “what happens in Amsterdam stays in Amsterdam”. Now, if that’s the case then I didn’t really leave much behind. In a city full of not legal although not really frowned upon activities that the rest of the world seems to be a little prudish towards, I was very innocent. With the red light district and the not so coffee orientated ‘coffee shops’ there is plenty of opportunity to get your self into trouble… without actually getting into trouble. You with me?
Narcotics and prostitutes aside (if you weren’t with me, you should be now) Amsterdam still has a lot happening for it. So I kicked off my time here with a walk around the city and burgers with a group of girls I’d met that day. Nothing to crazy, though a good orientation into the city. Then the next day we really got stuck into all the touristy stops with a walking tour around the city and a stroll through the streets and parks of Amsterdam, and topped it off with a visit to the Anne Franc House.
Anne Frank House was definitely one of the highlights here. It is a museum set up in the location of the hiding place of the Frank’s, Van Pels and Preffer families, and dedicated to the very well known Jewish girl (and those in similar situations) who left behind her diary before her and her family were eventually caught out and taken from their hiding place to concentration camps. A massive eyeopener and only one of what seemed like thousands of museums.
Along with bikes and canals there were museums everywhere, from the Rijksmuseum to the Van Gogh Museum to the sex museum and apparently even a ‘cats on bikes’ museum or something like that. I didn’t visit any of the above although I did check out a funky little Banksy and Salvador Dali exhibition, and the cheese museum where there was a massive amount of different cheeses for tasting, or in other words ‘free lunch’.
Despite not leaving much behind, I didn’t leave Amsterdam without taking something… that being a selfie with the ‘I Amsterdam’ sign. Now, if you are someone that isn’t fully committed to selfies than you might not have gotten up before 7:00am to get to the sign before the tourist rush… although I not ashamed to admit that I am one of those people. So a group of us headed down to the sign for a shoot, and I even clawed my way up on the top of the ‘a’ and managed to get a shot with only one tourist in it, aka ME. A successful mission to wrap up my time in Netherlands.
- Food: Stroopwafels are a big thing in the Netherlands, being two flat waffles with caramel in-between, defs worth a try though I wasn’t as obsessed with them as some others were
- Drink: There seems to be a lot of ‘Coffee shops’ around town. They are oddly smoky inside though… hmm
- Getting around: Walking is great as everything is pretty much in the centre but you cross roads at your own risk because push-bikes rule Amsterdam. They are everywhere and coming from every direction. Maybe just pick a block and never leave, it’s not worth trying to cross the road.
- To do: Anne Franc is a must, but go after 7pm or book online otherwise you’ll be stuck in a 2hr+ line, opposed the 25min line I waited in at 8:30pm.
Next stop: Berlin, Germany
Annie Charlotte xx