A Travellerspoint blog

Summary of our two days in Amsterdam

Alot of Canals!

sunny 18 °C

After a great brekkie at our BnB, we met our German friends at the train station in Haarlem. A quick trip to Amsterdam, we then decided that a canal tour would be the best way to "get to quickly know the city" Well after a good hour on the tour boat we were hopelessly confused, and no wonder, Amsterdam has more than 100 K of canals. So, we move to trying to conquer the city on foot. Sue wanted to make a pilgrimage back to where she had lived for three months 40 years ago. I was somewhat surprised at how close that was to the red light district. Luckily no one seemed to recognize her. The red light district was somewhat inactive - makes sense given it was 10:30 AM. So, we stopped for a beer at the "Coco Loco", cafe on one of the many plazas. We observed two muscians attempting to get a gig going, only to be promptly chased off by 3 tough looking bouncer types. A bit odd, to us onlookers but made just a bit more sense when said "bouncers" returned with musical instruments and immediately started to serenade the crowd.
We tried to get into the Anne Frank museum but it was too busy so we decided to return to haarlem where we rented bikes and had a great time riding through all of the side streets. We stopped to tour the amazing St Bavo Church, built in the 1400's. After stopping for a great Cappuccino we returned the bikes and went back to our BnB with our German friends. Franz Josef, showed up with a 5 litre keg of delicious Kolsch beer. Of course we all had a snoot full, my glass was very small so poor Dom had to keep filling it...man that was good beer!. Was a bit hard to find the Inddonesian restaurant after that but sobriety prevailed and we had a delicious spicy dinner.
Off to bed for a well deserved rest....to be continued.
Wayne

Posted by hbwatson 07:55 Comments (1)

Arrived in Amsterdam Ahead of Schedule

Let's start exploring!

semi-overcast 18 °C

Left Vancouver on schedule and actually arrived in Amsterdam 20 minutes ahead of schedule. Had amazing service on KLM - would certainly fly with them again. Dominic, Franz-Josef and Maria met us at the airport right on time then drove us over to Haarlem, a 20 minute drive away. Flying in it was amazing to see all of the canals, very flat and very green. In many ways if felt like flying over Richmond, many fields and very flat with ditches replaced by lovely canals.Seems like we have missed the blooming tulips as we haven't seen any yet.

Made it to the Bot Bed and Breakfast situated right across the street from a canal. This house was built in the mid 1800's and is full of charm and character. Carried our bags up 6 flights of very steep stairs, got settled in and then crashed for a couple of hours. FJ and the rest picked us up and drove us out to Zandvoort on the North Sea. It was a bit overcast but warm and the long sandy beach went on for every. If this was a warm location it would have been swarming with sunbathers for sure! Wander the town for a while, had some dinner at an outdoor Italian restaurant then headed back to Haarlem.

The 4 of us wandered around town for a couple of hours. We are happy to be staying here - what a special town. Lots more to see and explore in the coming days. Heading in to Amsterdam tomorrow. Will try posting some photos in the next post - haven't loaded any on to the computer yet.
Bye for now

Posted by hbwatson 22:43 Comments (1)

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