Lots and lots of bicycles!
Amsterdam is canals, and where there are canals, there must be boats.
Amsterdam’s canals keep the city from flooding, so that its inhabitants can continue to ride their bicycles from their jobs to do their shopping and back to their homes in the distinctive houses we’ve come to recognize as distinctly Amsterdammer.
Amsterdam is filled with color, from churches…
Amsterdam is old meets new.
Amsterdam is BEER.
Unfortunately, I prefer Belgian…
Make your appointment for the Anne Frank House online ahead of time. Otherwise you’ll be standing in a line like this:
And prepare to be moved in a way you might not expect as you walk through the rooms where she and her family hid out for two years, 1942 – 1944. The decorations she placed on the walls of the room she slept in are the only personal items left there. Otto Frank, the only surviving member of the family, insisted the rooms they lived in be displayed devoid of furnishings to represent the emptiness left when so many people captured by the Nazis did not return home.
More practical advice:
There are more museums than you can shake a stick at. You’ll never see them all, and probably you don’t want to. But the Van Gogh Museum is a don’t miss. So don’t miss it.
Most, including the aforementioned and the huge and famous Rijksmuseum, home to nearly a million works of mainly Dutch fine art, are located on or near the museum square, appropriately named Museumplein.
If you drive, park outside the city center and take a tram in. Parking is sparse. Trams are plentiful and fast. And driving in the center is like playing tag with people on bicycles. And the bicycles are also plentiful and fast.
There are a lot of choices of restaurants, especially if you are a meat-eater. There are more Argentinian steakhouses in Amsterdam than in Buenos Aires, I think. And there is usually at least one veg option on the menus of most restaurants.
Located two and a half hours by car north of Brussels, Amsterdam’s location invites visitors from all over the world. Will you be next?
By the way, if you read this post and COMMENT ON IT, I will enter your name in a drawing to win a free box of BELGIAN CHOCOLATES. Thanks for reading!