May 9th - Getting There Was... Visiting Amsterdam (Page Two)
It's just a hop, skip, and a jump! Thirteen hours in the air and about the same waiting to get on or off the planes!
Woke up early to prepare to head to Ontario airport and excited for the trip ahead, a text alert comes in regarding flight delays. Anxiety sets in…After a few more flight delays, Robin calls the American Airlines Customer Service to find out what’s going on. Because of weather in Dallas (our connecting flight) flights were being delayed so to make a long story short, we are booked on a different flight from John Wayne to Chicago. (instead of Ontario to Dallas)
A short "HOP"
We got to circle Chicago several times!
While heading to Chicago we had to circle a few times do to, yes you guessed it, more delays…
We barely made it onto the plane to France where we once again need to connect to get to Amsterdam. Oh the adventures of flying!
SKIP across "The Pond"
We had a little friend visit us!
Charles De Gaulle International is just outside the city...
Short "JUMP to Amsterdam!
The Amsterdam is right on the water
The airport was quite busy!
Did You Know? - When you land at the airport you are landing 3.5 feet below sea level!
Bob has a sharp eye!
The first sight... chocolate!
Can't miss it... Interesting architecture
The Hilton Amsterdam Airport Schiphol has interesting windows!
May 11th - We have the necessary tickets ready to go! Decided to take the train into Amsterdam (about 30 minute ride)
Time to see the city!
About Amsterdam: There is a fairytale quality to the tree-lined canal streets of Amsterdam. Boutiques, cafes, apartments and hotels may hide behind the facades of the gabled townhouses, but the look of this beautiful old city has not changed much since its 17th-century Golden Age.
Some 7,000 historic buildings remain, many of them beautiful merchants' mansions, located along canals that are laid out in five concentric circles, connected by bridges and intriguing small streets. No matter how many times you walk along the canals, they are enchanting to see, even when traffic and whizzing bicycles dispel the Old-World illusion. On a silent Sunday morning or on a summer evening when the old facades are floodlit, the city is magical.
Amsterdam is small enough that much of the city can be covered on foot, allowing visitors to savor sights such as the charming no-two-alike gables atop the houses, houseboats bedecked with potted greenery and masses of blooms in the colorful, floating flower market. Shops offering antiques and avant-garde art beckon everywhere. Outdoor markets, selling everything from postage stamps and parakeets to "junk-tiques," are another intriguing facet of the city.
Considered one of Europe's major art capitals, Amsterdam boasts three great Dutch museums as well as a branch of the Hermitage, the famous trove of art treasures in St. Petersburg, Russia. The Anne Frank House and Rembrandt's home are also popular attractions. In the performing arts, the city has two international stars: the National Ballet and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. (A 2008 poll from classical music magazine Gramophone called the latter the wo rld's best.)
The canal streets of the old city are protected by ordinance and will never change, but Amsterdam is expanding outward and architecture buffs will find both modern and historic neighborhoods to explore.
Amsterdam Central Station is the transportation hub
Get a ticket to ride
The trains are modern
The basilica of St. Nicholas (Sint Nicolassbasiliek), which dates from the 14th century, is one of the most majestic buildings in Amsterdam.
A few blocks away and its the main drag.... Just a few bicycles!
More bicycles than people!
Canals are all over the city
Did You Know? - Amsterdam, capital of the Netherlands, has more than one hundred kilometers of grachten (canals), about 90 islands and 1,500 bridges. The three main canals (Herengracht, Prinsengracht and Keizersgracht), dug in the 17th century during the Dutch Golden Age, form concentric belts around the city, known as the Grachtengordel. Alongside the main canals are 1550 monumental buildings.
The 17th-century canal ring area, including the Prinsengracht, Keizersgracht, Herengracht and Jordaan, were listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010, contributing to Amsterdam's fame as the "Venice of the North"
Half a click to Westerkerk and Ann Frank's home
Churches abound in the city dating back 500+ years!
Did You Know? - The Westerkerk was built between 1620 and 1631 in Renaissance style according to designs by architect Hendrick de Keyser (1565-1621). He is buried in the church he designed earlier: the 'Zuiderkerk'. The building of the Westerkerk was finished and completed by his son Pieter de Keyser (1595-1676) and inaugurated on June 8, 1631. The church has a length of 58 meters and a width of 29 meters. The high nave is flanked by the two lower aisles. The three-aisled basilica has a rectangular plan with two transepts of equal dimensions. As a result, the plan for this church was given the form of two Greek crosses connected with each other. (a patriarchal cross).
We just made it!
Ann Frank House - The Anne Frank House is a writer's house and biographical museum dedicated to Jewish wartime diarist Anne Frank. The building is located on a canal called the Prinsengracht, close to the Westerkerk, in central Amsterdam in the Netherlands.
The day was cool but sunny!
Passed at the age of 17...
Just hanging around - Hooks are mounted at the top fo the houses. The stairways are so narrow, these hooks we used as pulley’s to get equipment, even groceries to the higher floors
As if there weren't enough reasons to visit Amsterdam, you'll be able to check out Apple's new Store if you go to the city next year. New friends, Hisrch and Cie
May 11th - Heineken factory, (no time to taste)
Everything is close together
Did You Know? - The set up here is what most people imagine when they think of sex shows in Amsterdam, a theatre set up with seats close to the stage so everyone can get a look. It is also possible to sit at the bar, where of course it is easier to get your drinks, but the waitresses walking around the room are also perfectly willing to fetch refreshments for you.
The atmosphere at Moulin Rouge Amsterdam is a lot less seedy than most people might imagine. Instead of the perverts in dirty raincoats you might expect, it is likely to find the theatre packed with young backpackers, mixed groups of guys and girls and couples of all ages. Both bachelor parties and bachelorette parties are very fond of the Moulin Rouge, due to the club's willingness to accommodate group bookings, and so finding yourself in the middle of one of these is not unusual.
Canal boat tours can be arranged all over the city!
Let's find somewhere to eat!
Easy to find places to eat in this city!
My Dutch is not so good... I gave them the incorrect shoe size
May 12th - This was the final day before the season was over. Some flowers were already spent, but still very beautiful
Did You Know? - Keukenhof (English: "Kitchen garden"; Dutch pronunciation: [ˈkøːkə(n)ˌɦɔf]), also known as the Garden of Europe, is one of the world's largest flower gardens, situated in Lisse, South Holland, Netherlands. According to the official website for the Keukenhof Park, approximately 7 million flower bulbs are planted annually in the park, which covers an area of 32 hectares (79 acres).
Keukenhof is located in South Holland, south of Haarlem and southwest of Amsterdam. It is accessible by bus from the train stations of Haarlem, Leiden and Schiphol. It is located in an area called the "Dune and Bulb Region" (Duin- en Bollenstreek).
Keukenhof is open annually from mid-March to mid-May. The best time to view the tulips is around mid-April, depending on the weather.
Every color one could imagine!
A sea of red and white!
More than tulips!
Must have a windmill!
Standing in a sea of tulips!
Flowers seem to grow everywhere!
We sang "Tip Toe Through The Tulips" all afternoon!
We needed a shoehorn!
It's getting late so back to the hotel!
Hilton Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
Schiphol Boulevard 701, Schiphol, 1118BN NL (31 207104000)