A Trip to Amsterdam; the Saturday City

Amsterdam, the capital of The Netherlands, is famous for its red lights, coffee shops and canals. But it offers a lot more than that; a trip to Amsterdam will convince you.

trip to amsterdam

One of my favorite cities in the world is Amsterdam. I love its brick buildings, rich history, open skyline and relaxed, easy going attitude towards life. Amsterdam has so much to do that, even after so many visits, you will still find new things to do and see. The city deserves much more than just the few days travelers give it, but if a few days is all you have and you want to make the most of it, I will give you mouthwatering reasons why Amsterdam is so special.

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So You Only Have 48 Hours in Amsterdam

Amsterdam CanalsOftentimes there is one thing that we lack when we are traveling – time. If you need to make the most of the time you have and still want to experience some of the best that Amsterdam has to offer, we will help you pack as much as you can within only 48 hours. This should be enough to allow you to experience everything from modern Dutch life to the wonders of the 17th-century Low Countries.

Day 1 – morning – moving from the Dam Square to the Anne Frank Huis

Once you get to Amsterdam in the morning, the first half of the day is spent on the Central Canal Belt in Amsterdam. This functions as a semi-circle around the Central Station. Once you start at ‘Centraal Station’, you head south until you reach the Damrak. This is the most noticeably tourist-centered street in all of Amsterdam and the range of souvenirs that you find here run from hilariously kitsch to tasteful.

At the end of the Dam Square, you will end up with the National Monument to the east and the Royal Palace (Koninklijk Paleis) to your west. You should take a moment and appreciate the Empire-period decorative arts that are spread across the 17 different rooms in the palace.

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Explore The Netherlands’ Lovely Castles

177128987If you’re a lover of castles, manors, and other royal residences, you’re in for a treat while exploring the beautiful countryside of The Netherlands. From the borders near Germany and Belgium to the vast expanses by the North Sea, The Netherlands is full of spectacular castles, some in excellent condition and others little more than barely recognizable ruins. But for the castle fanatic, a trip from one to another is certainly exciting, and the opportunity for great photos abound.

Below we’ve listed some of our favorite Netherlands castles you might want to consider visiting next time you’re heading to Holland.

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Plenty of Kid-sized Fun in Amsterdam

138085156Mention that you’re going to Amsterdam to your friends and family with some travel smarts, and they’ll probably toss you a smirk and ask you why you would take your children to such a destination. After all, Amsterdam boasts quite a well-known “red light” district, certainly not appropriate fodder for a family vacation. And then there’s those “coffee shops”. Everyone who knows anything about international travel can tell you that they’re not peddling “cups of Joe” at those locales but, rather, offering legal cannabis, marijuana, and other substances to those who wish to indulge in “soft” drug use.

So, given all that, why bother to take your children to Amsterdam? Because this wonderful city in Holland has so much more to offer than it’s (slightly) seedy side. Whether you’ve got toddlers in tow, elementary aged children, tweens and teens, or a combination of all three along for the trip, you’ll find that there’s plenty to keep them busy and that the activities that appeal to them will also – for the most part – appeal to parents as well.  (more…)

Travel Holland’s Flower Route this Spring

Tulips and Windmill in HollandHistory tells us that the first tulip was planted in the Netherlands some 420 years ago. Since that time, the Dutch and tulips have become synonymous. Perhaps you’ve seen the photos of the expansive fields of red, orange, and yellow tulips blanketing the Dutch countryside, sun shining and windmills turning in the background. If you’re an avid gardener or amateur horticulturist, a whiz with a camera, or someone who just admires great beauty, maybe you’ve always wanted to admire that sight in person.

The time is now! Spring provides the perfect opportunity to make a tulip trip to Holland. Specifically, April – especially around mid-month – is ideal as the flowers are at their most glorious about that time of year. Holland has even provided a “Flower Route” for those who wish to spend time amid the tulips, whether you prefer to drive at your own pace or to sign up for escorted tours that include a chance to admire the springtime colors of Holland while enjoying wonderful cities, towns, and villages along the way. (more…)

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