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  • Writer's pictureJuliet Weller

Alluring Amsterdam


A row of houses on a canal in Amsterdam with a canal boat in the foreground

It's no secret that Amsterdam is an exciting place to visit. Its rich history, artistic legacy, intricate canal system, and abundance of museums, offer much to do and see.


I just returned from a visit to The Netherlands, that included beautiful Belgium; sometimes, despite all the exciting activities, my favorite moments on a trip are those spent simply BEING - having a moment without flurry of movement, or. distracting thrill, allowing me to sense, absorb, and to mentally and emotionally record my surroundings.


However, between those moments, go for the grandeur, the excitement of seeing the things from the movies and picture books; the flavors of the stroopwafels fresh from the bakery instead of a foil wrapper; the chance to take your own photo of Rembrandt's portrait; the flashy colors of the tulips you love but that don't grow well in your climate; the heady fragrance from the coffee shops (they're not just for coffee anymore!), and a trip to tour the windmills - real, centuries-old windmills at Kinderdijk, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

 

Oh, the things you'll LEARN: the correct pronunciation of Gouda; where to find a lake full of swans and why they won't leave (I'm looking at you, Bruges, Belgium); the origin of the phrase "three sheets to the wind"; that a college education in The Netherlands only costs a thousand euros (keep your grades up or else...); why there is so much cheese; that the luxury hotel you're staying in was once a convent.


The surprises are in the details that your guide divulges. The joy is in one-of-a-kind experiences. The luxury is in the personalized curations designed by your travel advisor.


What else is there to do?

1. Take a boat tour on the historical canals of the city and experience the adaptations of living in a city that is water-logged and unique. Since there are hundreds of canals throughout the nation that were created just for travel, there is no reason not to give this popular attraction a try. During your gentle water ride, you'll get to view some of the country's most detailed architecture and most beautiful landscapes.

 

2. Take a walk through the wildflowers. Amsterdam takes great pride in its bulb flowers, especially tulips. Visit the amazingly vibrant bulb flower park Keukenhof, in Lisse, if you wish to see the tulips in all their glory. If you happen to miss the tulip season, don't worry. There are plenty of bulbed flowers that grow year-round at the park.


3. Visit one of the many spectacular art museums or history museums. Check out paintings by Rembrandt, Van Gogh, or other world-renowned artists or revisit history by walking into the Anne Frank House, where you can see the secret annex where Anne hid during World War II.

 

 4. Walkthrough De Wallen, the nation's red-light district. Although it's famous foroft-considered risqué behavior, there is much more to expereince: fine restaurants, luxurious hotels, small quirky boutiques, and 'responsible entertainment' at any of the establishments not lit up with red lights. For a faster way to venture through, rent a bicycle.


5. One of the best things to do in Amsterdam is to walk around. Who doesn’t love a nice walk through the romantic streets of Amsterdam discovering the small corners and narrow cobbled alleys, the beautiful urban landscapes with the typical houses along canals as you visit some of the most iconic places of the city.


6. Last but not least, you mustn't leave the country without trying some of its authentic Dutch cuisines or experiencing one of its cannabis coffeehouses, if that's your pleasure. Just remember, a coffee-shop is not a café (something else you will learn!).

People travel all over the world to Amsterdam to encounter these coffee shops in person as a way to unwind. Coffee houses are some of the most reputable and reliable sources to enjoy a delicious bite to eat, and a puff as you dine.


You are not limited to staying in Amsterdam. Let us arrange your visits to Den Haag, Utrecht, Zandaam, Delft, or Haarlem, then top off your day with tea at the Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam. We'll make your reservation for their popular afternoon tea in the luxurious ambiance of their Library d’Or: savor teas and infusions made by Cecilia, the Tea Sommelier herself, along with a delightful selection of sweet and savory delicacies. You will want to return to Amsterdam before too long.


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'til next week.


 

 Did you miss any of my articles? They are all here.


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Contact Juliet: GLOBAL EXOTIC ADVENTURES

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