After relaxing with my siblings in Paris, I decided to take a week to explore Amsterdam.
A few notes:
- Took the Thalys train from Paris to Amsterdam, with a quick stop in Brussels. Only 3 hours from Paris to Amsterdam, with wifi on the train – an easy trip.
- Used AirBnB to book a great place to stay right in the town center. $50/night for my own apartment in central Amsterdam? Yes please.
- Dined at the popular Febo, a chain of Automats around town. Cheap, quick and dirty burgers and fries. Not the best food, but its easy and quick.
- Walked around town, passing over the frozen canals. With water running throughout the city, there’s a distinct sense of peace and tranquility. I loved having the water around all the time. And the Dutch houses lining the canals were absolutely beautiful.
- Rented a bike and rode north into the Dutch countryside. The canals continue north all the way out into the country, where they irrigate fields of crops. Houses are built all along the large and small canals. There’s a levee on the outskirts of the the farmland, which keeps the sea out. They’ve constructed a very long pathway on top of the levee, which was a pleasure to ride along.
- The crooked houses lining the canals are great. Since the ground is so soft in Amsterdam, all of the buildings are built on wooden piles. As the piles age, they deform, and result in houses that lean everywhere.
- Kinder Eggs! These are illegal the US, but sold everywhere else. Fun surprise in each one!