Thursday, February 24, 2011

Amsterdam Pics and Commentary

The second stop on our trip was Amsterdam. After the chilly weather in Berlin, we were glad to be somewhere where it was a tad bit warmer and the sun was shining. Unfortunately that weather only lasted the first day we were there. The second day Sean and I almost got blown off bridges by the 40mph wind gusts.

Weather aside, I enjoyed Amsterdam. I liked that the city was very English friendly, because let's be honest, I don't speak a word of Dutch. People were very friendly and helpful, which is always a plus. The downside was that Amsterdam was expensive. Food, accommodations, entertainment were all more expensive here then in most of the other cities we visited.

Speaking of accommodations, where we stayed in Amsterdam was probably the most unusual place we stayed on our trip. I picked a hostel that just happened to be on a houseboat. Overall, I liked it. The boat could have used some fresh paint and a little fixing up, but the staff was nice, our bed was super comfortable and the breakfast was great.



Our accomodations



The view inside our room. Note Sean under the bed turning down the radiator.

The first day we were there we walked around to get a feel for the city and what it was like. There were two main things I wanted to see while we were in Amsterdam: The Anne Frank House and the Van Gough Museum. The first day, while walking through the Jordaan neighborhood, we decided to stop at the Anne Frank House.



One of the sights on our walk to the Anne Frank House. Notice the really skinny house in the middle!



Outside the Anne Frank House. Of course, no pictures were allowed in the museum, which I always find a bit disappointing. However, I really recommend going there if you are ever in Amsterdam. I found it to be very moving and seeing Anne's diary was just incredible.



I couldn't help but laugh when I saw this. Although as a small child I might have been frightened.



Of course, being in Amsterdam Sean had to have Heineken.

I have to say that being in Amsterdam and smelling marijuana everytime I passed a coffeshop was an interesting experience. It seems though as if you are going to make it legal then you should follow their lead. I never felt unsafe while I was in Amsterdam, of course I didn't go looking for trouble either.



Another canal shot on our walk around Amsterdam.



This was the view from outside our boat. Gorgeous!

The second day we were in Amsterdam I wanted to go check out the flower market and we decided on the Van Gough museum. I was a bit sad that it's not quite time for tulips, so I missed out on seeing a lot of those, but there were a few and I loved seeing the wooden shoes.



I wanted a pair, but they wouldn't fit in my suitcase.



I did get treated to seeing a few flowers while I was at the market.



I looked for this all over and finally found it on the way to the Van Gough Museum. (I am aware the m is a bit cut off, I have yet to stich this photo with another to complete it. Bad photographer, I know!)

The Van Gough Museum was great. One of my favorite art museums I've been in. I'm not sure Sean was impressed, but I was. It was amazing to see the painting Sunflowers in person and to see some of his lesser known work. The museum was a bit pricey, but worth it in my opinion.



I'd never seen this painting before, but it was Sean's favorite and I have to admit it's a bit intriguing. ( I didn't take this picture, I found it from google search)

If you're ever in Amsterdam, stop at a care and get a toastie. We had a basic ham and cheese toastie and it was awesome. Best sandwich of the trip. Other cuisine we enjoyed while we were there was Thai food and one night I also had falafel at a local place. I enjoyed the mix of different food cultures.



See all the bikes on the bridge? I've never seen so many bikes in one city in my life. Seriously, they were everywhere. A lot of them also had extra toys on top so you could identify them, or little wheelbarrow looking attachments on the front, for your kids, groceries, etc.

Exhibit A:


Exhibit B:



Hope you enjoyed the recap!

12 comments:

AngieDMac said...

I love the recap! I went to Amsterdam last spring! It was an amazing experience. We stayed in a hostel that was in one of those skinny buildings on a third floor. I thought I was going to break my neck going down, the steps were so steep. I wanted to go to the VanGogh museum and to the I AMsterdam city sign.

JG said...

I went to Amsterdam in high school with a group. Still one of my favorite trips. Loved the Anne Frank house, the architecture and the art. Didn't make it to the Van Gogh museum, sadly. And we went in the spring, so there were flowers and flower markets everywhere! It was wonderful! We spent most of our time in the immigrant sections, not the Dutch ones, so there was a pretty significant language barrier. But I loved it. I just wish I still had my pictures. All I had at the time was a disposable camera and the album I put them all in is MIA. *sigh* So I am LOVING your pictures.

Jessica Lynn said...

Loved the photos! And I'm excited I "know" someone who stayed in the hostel boat! I looked into staying there when my friend and I were in Amsterdam, but opted for another hostel because of one reason or another, but I totally remember the boat!

I was only there for about 15 hours and can't wait to go back. We also hit up the Van Gogh museum and Anne Frank's house!

Julie said...

Amsterdam was my most favorite city when I was in Europe! I loved it! I want to go back someday. Such awesome pictures :)

Dixie Bell Designs said...

Great recap... I want to visit Amsterdam! When I was watching House Hunters International the other night the couple was buying a houseboat in Amsterdam, I couldn't believe how pricy they were... it would definitely be fun to stay in one!

Shoshanah said...

I would love to visit the Anne Frank house someday! It's definitely on the list of the top things I want to do in my lifetime

Adrienne said...

MUST GO THERE!!! *drool* it looks awesome! Thanks for showing us the fantastic pictures. The canals are just breath taking. I cannot wait to go there!

MyDearJenn said...

Oh my gosh! That looks like heaven!

ALW said...

Glad you enjoyed Amsterdam! I'm looking forward to going there more now after seeing your pictures!

Andrea@Sgt and Mrs Hub said...

I think that I would love Amsterdam!

I'm hungry right now so that sandwich sounded super amazing!

Love that you stayed on a houseboat - what a great adventure :)

❈ Annie - Blonde Glambition ❈ said...

The Anne Frank House was my favorite stop in Amsterdam. I was obsessed with reading and learning about her as a a kid, so it was my number one reason for visiting the city. Your pictures are fabulous by the way :)

SS said...

Amsterdam is on my list to visit... been there, but didn't get outside of the airport. Which is very nice all on it's own but not quite the experience I'm looking for when I actually want to visit a city.

I saw the same episode of House Hunters that someone mentioned above and thought about it when you mentioned the house boat. We have a lot of those in the area I live but they don't look so much like boats as they do houses sitting on docks.

Love the pics!