Thursday, 29 April 2010

Amsterdam: canals, narrow houses, tulips and lots and lots of bikes

So, Rob and I spent a few days in Amsterdam, the city of tulips! Did I ever mention that tulips are my favourite flower? Well, I am saying it now. I have loved them for a very long time and now I like them even more. Did you know that there are over 1000 varieties of tulips in the world? And did you know that tulips didn't originally come from Holland but Central Asia instead? I have learnt this and more at the Tulip Museum, a little, cosy museum you must visit next time you are in town. Of course, we went to the flower market as well and bought some bulbs of black and blue tulips. We'll plant them this weekend and can't wait to see them blooming!

Amsterdam really is the city of flowers, they are everywhere. And everywhere are canals and little, narrow houses...

not to mention bikes! Please be careful when you walk, bike riders really don't care about pedestrians, they are the queens and kings of all the roads!

We stayed in this beautiful hotel, full of character and great design, Hotel Arena. Don't you just love these chandeliers? If I had a big enough house, with very high ceilings, I would definitely buy them. They are a bit weird, perhaps, but so am I!
So, a few recommendations:
The Cat Cabinet: if you love cats as much as I do, go ahead and visit this amazing museum completely dedicated to cats. At the entrance there will be two cats welcoming you and if you show them enough love, they will follow you around the house. The house is a gem in itself and certainly worth a visit.
And of course Rembrandt House and Anne Frank House. Don't bother to go to the Van Gogh Museum, you will spend 14€ to see paintings that *inspired* Van Gogh and just a very few of his own!
A very big highlight of the trip was this burger diner suggested on my guide: Burgermeester. This is your chance to taste the delicious Blonde d'Aquitaine, and no, it's not a beer, it's a type of meet! Believe me when I say that I have never, ever, eaten a better burger, not even in the States!
So, I would definitely advise you to book a trip to Amsterdam as soon as possible! And one final piece of advice: don't breath in the air too much, you'll find yourself all stoned even if you haven't touched a sigarette :)

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