27 – 30 APRIL: AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS
Continued from part 14: Day four in Paris
THE HIGHLIGHTS FROM THREE DAYS IN AMSTERDAM
As with most things in life, all good things must eventually come to an end. I’ve been putting off writing this post (for a month, I know!), as I feel that it will finally conclude a trip I’m not quite ready to forget.
We depart the beautifully wet city of Paris on an early morning train to Amsterdam. The owner of Pension de Laurier, the B&B we will be staying at, kindly smsed us details explaining which trams to take to get there safely. Of all the train stations we’ve arrived at over the last four weeks, Centraal Stasie seems to have been the most confusing one to decipher. It cost two journeys back to the station in order to get tickets for the bus and tram system, but finally we succeed.
Arriving at Pension de Laurier could not have been more different from our Parisian “hotel” experience. It felt like arriving home to a place of love. We showered and felt 1000 times better for it, ready to take on the city of Amsterdam.
After Venice, Amsterdam seemed a breeze to navigate. The streets were easy to understand and the entire city if amazingly beautiful. I truly feel as though I would be able to live there, if ever I wanted to leave the sunny “velde” of South Africa behind.
We had so much planned for Amsterdam, but after so many museums, beautiful parks, exciting roadtrips and historical sites; we were completely touristed-out. We spent our last three days in Europe being far less industrious and far more relaxed. We also stopped taking notes of what we did every day, so I am recalling the highlights from memory!
1. Walking to the Van Gogh Museum and instead of going in, enjoying a picnic of cheese, fresh bread and champagne on the lawn in front of the museum.
2. Shopping in De 9 Straatjes area. The shops here are quaint and small and intimate and awesome!
3. Sharing a serving of fresh ‘frittes’ with Francois in De Dam Plein, watching the “kermis”.
4. Finding a cheese shop with amazing fresh breads down the road from where we were staying.
5. Discovering that Burger King was running a promotion 🙂
6. Walking through the Westermarkt market on Sunday.
7. Marvelling at the very Dutch, very lopsided architecture.
8. Enjoying the rest of Amsterdam, in gloriously sunny weather.
9. And of course, being in Amsterdam on 30 April 2012 for Koninginnedag!