Friday, 17 July 2015

Four Days in Amsterdam: Part One

Four Days In Amsterdam

This is the first time I have sat at my computer in a while and, although it might not seem like I have been away as blog posts have been going up as normal (thanks to the wonderful creation of the schedule button) I have spent the past four days in Amsterdam. This is a trip that my family and I have had planned for quite a while and I have been very excited about it since I found out we were going. Some of the things I particularly wanted to see were the Anne Frank house, the Van Gogh museum and also the Fault in Our Stars bench (yes, that really was something I wanted to see!). Today's post will be part one of the trip (days one and two) and on Monday I will post part two which will consist of the things we did on day 3 and 4. If I did it as one post it would get very long and probably a bit boring!

The first thing that was great about this trip is how close to home it is. Living in the south of England means that the flight time is only about 1 hour so after getting a 10am flight we had arrived in Amsterdam by 11am (or 12pm local time). We took the train into Amsterdam Centraal station and then got a cab to our hotel. We stayed at the NH Schiller Hotel which was located in a very touristy part of town. My dad described it as being a little bit like Leicester Square in London. There were a lot of very touristy restaurants and quite a few bars with crazy flashing lights. Personally I think I would have preferred to have stayed somewhere a bit more in the canal area but that was just because I thought that area was stunning. Having said that we were only a short walk away from some of the canals so it really didn't matter.

Four Days In Amsterdam

Our first day was spent walking around the city and getting our bearings. After having lunch near to our hotel we walked past places like the Anne Frank House and popped into a little cafe called The Happy Pig for some very yummy pancakes (with strawberries and Nutella of course!).

One of the first things I noticed about Amsterdam was how pretty all of the buildings were. Each one was so different from the next and they just looked amazing next to the canals. Another thing that I noticed was how many bicycles there were. One tip I would give to anyone going to Amsterdam is to watch out for the bikes when you are crossing the road, they are all over the place and very rarely stop to let you cross the road!

Four Days In Amsterdam

Four Days In Amsterdam

Day two was a slightly early start as we had decided we would go to visit Anne Frank's house that day and since we hadn't booked tickets we needed to get there early to avoid being in the queue for too long. We had arrived at the house by 8am and there was already a pretty big queue, so get there early if you don't want to be near the back! Myself, my brother and my dad went off to try and find something to eat and my mum very kindly stayed in the queue (we did bring her back a croissant and a coffee, don't worry!)

By about 9:30am we were inside the house so it really is worth getting there early if you haven't already booked tickets as by the time we left the house at 11ish the queue had tripled in size.

The house itself was an amazing experience. Having heard about the story and watching a TV adaptation of it a few years ago I knew the story, so to actually see where they lived for two years was quite surreal. The house was tiny for the amount of people living in it and it was quite a weird experience to be in the same house that these people had been trapped during the war. I would say that if you were going to do one thing in Amsterdam this should definitely be it as it is an amazing thing to experience.

Four Days In Amsterdam

After that we headed into the centre of the city and went on a canal tour. It was a really nice way to relax but at the same time see some of the city that I hadn't already seen. We then decided that after a very late lunch we would head to Rembrandt's House. Personally this wasn't up my street since I'm not really in to art and to be honest I hadn't actually heard of Rembrandt until we went to his house but if you are in to art or love Rembrandt this would be a good place to go as you get to see where he lived for some of his life.

So there is part one of my trip to Amsterdam and part two will be up on Monday at 12pm!


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