Category Archives: The Netherlands

Amsterdam Day 5: the last day

Day 5 was pretty basic! We looped back and conquered the Rijks Museum, and then went to an office party at the beach. It was pretty relaxed, but we had a great time. I’m happy we ended up going out with the pega folks, it was really good to see a different part of holland (and not with a tour). Thanks for the hospitality, Pega Amsterdam!


Amsterdam Day 4: Windmills, etc.

Due to internet difficulties this post has been delayed by a couple days. But have no fear there are a TON of photos to make up for it.

On day 4 Lucia and I did an “excursion” with a tour company. It was 10.5 hours of efficient tourism! We saw windmills, the delft pottery factory, a clog factory, a cheese factory, the Hague, and Madurodam (a giant park of miniaturized holland which has a strikingly similar name to the current Venezuelan president).

I ended up having a pretty unhealthy (but delicious) food day. For breakfast I had a fresh waffle with raspberries and creme — DELICIOUS. For lunch/dinner I had a plate of fish deep fried in a thick and spicy batter — also delicious.

Other than that, I think most things are captured pretty accurately in the pictures. Stay tuned for a roundup of Day 5!

Amsterdam Day 3: Rainy and Sick

This will be a disappointing post for many. Lucia woke up with feeling pretty sick, so we had a lighter day than we had hoped — also no pictures because of the rain!

First off we woke up early, had breakfast at our favorite cafe (vinnie’s deli), and then took the tram to the museum district. We were fortunate enough to be around 5th in line to get into the Rijks Museum (when we left 15 min later the line as hundreds long), but because Lucia was sick, we did little more than buy the tickets — which we’ll use on Friday morning.

After sitting for a bit and reading about the Rijks, Lucia was feeling better but not 7 hours of museum better. We decided to delay our Rijks visit and instead visit the much smaller Van Gogh Museum. There we got to see so many amazing paintings. Since you see so many up close, you can really get a sense for how his style changed over time. Also the way they set up the tour, you really see how different artists and styles directly affect his own style. It’s pretty amazing.

After the Van Gogh museum we took the tram to the marriott where I weasled our way onto a business center computer so we could print out some trip confirmations and book our train rides to Brugge.

Then came nap time.

Then the fun stuff happened! Lucia’s high school friend, Vincent, actually lives in Amsterdam. When we messaged him, he let us know that another one of their friends from school was visiting at the same time! Tonight we all went out to dinner and drinks, and had a great time — except when we saw a mouse in a pizza joint…not so appetising.

Today was a slow tourism day, but was still a great time.

Have a good night! Expect some pictures tomorrow.

Amsterdam Day 2: I Amsterdam

Today we wanted to take it easy a bit. We had only one real goal — see the I Amsterdam sign. Mission accomplished, but along the way we saw quite a bit more!

We started the day at our new favorite cafe, Vinnies Deli. While enjoying our coffee, we noticed everyone eating delicious food, so tomorrow — we will be those people. From here, we walked over to the Anne Frank house. Along the way we actually found a cracked open door which displayed a beautiful garden behind it. We actually learned about this on our canal tour yesterday. Apparently many of the more expensive apartments actually conceal large outdoor living areas behind them. Just past the secret garden, we saw a cute dog that we think either likes watching everyone go by or is just stuck because we saw the same dog yesterday in basically the same spot. When we finally got to the Anne Frank house, there was a line around the block. The line moved fast, and even if it didn’t, it was well worth the wait…and not only because we saw a sleeping baby on a bike.

From the Anne Frank house, we moved through central Amsterdam in search of short socks for Lucia. Ultimately we found some at H&M, but just when I thought we were done, she had to get some nail polish. This is when she abandoned me outside, alone, with french fries, for like 15 minutes — good bye diet. Once Lucia was done, we kept walking and found a great Indian place to get some food (which we was recommended by a woman at ANOTHER store, sissy boys — this was the first time today that lucia’s shopping benefited me ;-p ). The food was amazing. It was called Mayur Indian and it’s right near Leidseplein.

After dinner, we completed a short trip to the final destination: I Amsterdam. The sign is really cool, and is right in the middle of the Museum District (which we’ll be hitting up tomorrow). We spent a bit of time in the area walking around, and enjoying the park and then moved on towards our home base. On our way, though, we actually spotted a resaurant named Pasta E Basta! Our 5 college friends will like that one =).

Once we got back to our room, we decompressed a bit, and went out for a drink at a local bar called “Harlem.” Named for the street it’s on. Now we’re in bed, and it’s time to get some sleep. Hope you enjoy the photos, and we’ll keep you up to date with our museum visits tomorrow!

Amsterdam Day 1: Zombieland

Hey everyone! Lucia and I landed safe and sound in Amsterdam this morning. We grabbed some much needed coffee, and hopped on a train to the city center. From there, we lugged our bags in the direction of our room (Air BnB with Audrey) and found a nice cafe (NOT coffee shop) to sit in and waste some time while we waited for check-in.

Instead of just facebooking, we decided to actually plan our trip a bit — since there hasn’t been much time for that. So far our trip is shaping up nicely. On the 6th we’ll be leaving Amsterdam to head for Bruges, Belgium (2 nights), and then on to Paris (4 nights). That’s all we have so far — but we may make a detour to Germany for a few days and ultimately travel to Barcelona (our final destination) through Lucerne, Switzerland.

After the hour or two in the cafe, we dropped off our bags and started our zombie march through Amsterdam. I showed Lucia where I spent time when I was here for work, we took a canal boat tour, and then just got lost walking through the streets along the canals. Despite the fact that we were both falling in and out of sleep during the tour (I also fell asleep at the table during lunch), we both learned a bunch, enjoyed the scenery, and met some really great folks from Sydney, Australia who happened to sit right next to us!

Our host, Audrey, seems really nice and recommended a dutch pancake place to us for dinner. We ended up getting a pancake with bacon, cheese, and onions — it was awesome. No more commentary needed there.

Today was definitely a bit of a blur after the long red-eye flight (not too long thanks to a few episodes of Top Gear), but it was a good introduction to the city and we’re excited to jump into things tomorrow when we’re a bit more rested.

The internet here isn’t that great, I’ll add some photos from the cafe tomorrow morning. Good night!

UPDATE: here are some photos!