It's Small but Effective
Amsterdam is such a diverse city - you will certainly meet plenty of different nationalities, and be allowed to do things that may be forbidden or frowned upon in most other major cities.
It is a large city, however most of the action is centred in or around a fairly small area, the visitor attractions like musuems are away a bit from the red light area - well there are a couple of museums there too, but they aint dedicated to Rembrandt or Van Gogh !!! I am paricularly fond of a liitle bar almost on Dam Square - it's proper title is Cafe de Dam - also known as Louis Bar, just as you enter Damstraat from Dam Square. It has a sign saying it is one of Amsterdams Smallest Bars - no doubt about that, but it is full of life, nice staff and it gives you a chance to see the colours of your favourite football team. Although it slightly favours Newcastle and Liverpool it has a scarf from just about every British football team and lots of the main European ones also. Serves excellent bier and an assortment of everything else from coffee through all spirits, even has a little terrace for warmer afternoons & evenings. You can even get a chance to leave your mark in the pub, sign your name on the back of a beer mat, then try to find somewhere firm to secure it to the wall - but beware, if it falls off - it goes in the bin !!!
Makes a good meeting point and there is always someone to talk to.
People watch. Very interseting...
People watch. Very interseting what you might see just walking the streets. listening to a street musician play 'A Day in the Life', and seeing the rain come down and thinking that Im really in Amsterdam!
Amsterdam counts 100 canals with a length of 100 km span by 1000 bridges.
I think the most famous of these bridges is the "magere brug" show in my front page.
In 1963 Amsterdam put a lot of iron gates along the canals to protect cars from falling in the water, however they can't prevent that at least once a week a car ride into one of the canals.
NICE TO KNOW THINGS.......
THE AMSTERDAM TOURIST BOARD
Besides tourist information (hotel reservations, excursions and theatre tickets etc.) the Amsterdam Tourist Office (still called by its former name " VVV ", provides info on guided walking tours, attractions, restaurants, shops, parking facilities and public transportation.
The Tourist Offices can be found at 3 central locations: CENTRAL STATION, LEIDSEPLEIN and STADIONPLEIN.
Amsterdam Tourist Board: 0900 400 40 40
Why the Dutch don't wear bicycle helmets
For a conscientious helmet-wearer like me, it was shocking to see that hardly anybody in Amsterdam wears a bicycle helmet, not even the children.
After asking around a bit, I learned that Dutch traffic planners decided years ago not to make helmets a part of their safety package.
Their reasoning: If you tell people to wear helmets they are likely to get the impression that cycling is too dangerous or uncomfortable, and stop doing it altogether. This results in more automobile use, more congestion, more pollution, more noise, more accidents, more deaths and injuries, less exercise and more heart attacks. In short, the negative results of a helmet campaign far outweigh the benefits.
The Dutch approach to bicycle safety is to invest in the infrastructure and in the education of everyone who uses the streets. They have also made some progress towards allocating public street space more fairly, meaning roughly one-quarter each for pedestrians, trams, bicycles and motor vehicles. To accomplish this took (and takes) hard work and persistence, since it was (and is) opposed every step of the way by the powerful lobbies that promote excessive automobile use at the expense of public health and safety.
Two more lessons of Dutch bicycle policy:
--There is safety in numbers. The greater the number of cyclists on the roads, the safer they are.
--There is safety in skill and competence. If people cycle a lot, starting in early childhood and continuing throughout their lives, they are bound to get very good at it.
Second, third and fourth photos: Young cyclists without helmets.
Fifth photo: This is the only child I saw wearing a helmet. (I did see three or four adults wearing helmets, but I suspect they were foreigners like me.)