Both Solli and I are preternaturally late. Bear never. He got us to our 7:25 am Thalys train at Gare du Nord on time thank goodness. Always at track 8 or 9 by the way.
3 hours later. Voila! AMSTERDAM!
Off to our AirBnB in the Red Light district to dump our stuff and then explore and EAT LUNCH!
Amsterdam has not changed so much physically from the old days.
Yet it is a vibrant, energetic city with a town feeling and endlessly, breathtakingly beautiful.
I immediately fell in love with all reflections
In the canals.
Even on fabulously shiny doorways.
We never got to ride in a canal boat, though I'd love to paddleboat next trip.
We never got to the tulip fields, Keukehof. Too early. We heard everything blooming was inside the green houses.
We did get to the small, informative Tulip museum on Prinsengracht 220 right next to
The Cheese museum, more of a shop with plenty of tastes and fun.
We never got to eat waffles or pancakes!
Or sit in all the beautiful canal-side cafes. Next time.
How come everyone looks like
They stepped out of a Vermeer painting?
Everyone was delightful, helpful and friendly!
We did eat applecake on at least 3 occasions in 2 days. That big puff is whipped cream on top not meringue. These are from Patisserie Holtkamp, the best in Amsterdam we were told by the customers and I don't doubt it for an instant.
We did get to eat the BEST lunch of our lives at The Seafood Bar - a whole post to come.
We did visit the canal house museums (a must-do) like the Museum Van Loon - an exquisite look inside life of wealthy Amsterdamers of 300 years ago.
Back in the Red Light District the swans don't mind a bit and neither did we. Did we like Amsterdam? We LOVED it!
What to do in Amsterdam?
THANK YOU PBers for all of your terrific suggestions in the comments. You made it so easy. Basically you can be happy just wandering. Amsterdam is a lot like Venice, but alive, bustling and in some residential areas like Jordaan quiet, contemplative.
More Amsterdam posts to come!
More Amsterdam pictures on Flickr.