Dam Square, Amsterdam
In the center of Amsterdam you find many Chinese businesses, not limited to the Chinese quarter.
Chinese Massage is one of those businesses and they might differ from one to the other.
Chinese Beauty Massage at the Gravenstraat 28 (behind the Nieuwe Kerk at the Dam square) is one of them.
The Dam Square is probably Amsterdam's most important town square. Its history dates back to the 13the century, when it was built as a link between the settlements on the banks of the river Amstel.
Nowadays the square is home to several sights, like the 22 m tall National Monument, which was errected in 1956 to commemorate the victims of the Second World War.
On the northern side of the Dam square the De Bijenkorf department store can be found. Its monumental building was designed by the Hungarian-American architect Marcel Breuer and inaugurated in 1957.
The grand neoclassical Royal Palace (Koninklijk Palace) dominates the western side of the square. It was actually built as the town hall in the 17th century.
Just next to the Royal Palace stands the New Church (Nieuwe Kerk). It was constructed in the 15th-century in Gothic style. Nowadays the church isn't used for church services anymore, but for exhibitions and alike.
Other notable buildings at the Dam Square include the Hotel Krasnapolsky and the Madame Tussauds Museum.
Several times per year, the square is also the location of a large funfair, which was also the case when we visited Amsterdam end of October 2012.
The Dam Square is situated right in the heart of Amsterdam's city centre, only 5 minutes on foot south of the Central Railway station.
Packed with locals and tourists day and night, there is always something going on here in DAM SQUARE. Expect lots of entertainment, like the man pictured here, playing with the pigeons.
The Highlight of the Square is the Royal Palace. Also in the square is Madame Tussauds' Wax Museum, National Memorial Statue and the New Church (Nieuwe Kerk).
Honestly, I've never seen anything like it - hundreds of people, just sitting around enjoying themselves in the warm sunshine. And the pigeons - hundreds of them.
The ROYAL PALACE OF AMSTERDAM was built during the Dutch Golden Age in the 17th century. It is situated in the west side of Dam Square in the center of Amsterdam, next to the Nieuwe Kerk.
The Palace is used by Queen Beatrix for entertaining and official functions during state visits.
Tours are available.
Yes in transit you can leave the airport easiest way is to use the train which takes about 10-15 minutes and takes you straight into Amsterdam central station cost 3-4 euros.
The Trains run regularly approx every 15 min so this will give a god time to explore the City.
The airport is like any other and as such 9 hours will be a very long time unless you hit a winning streak in the Casino.
Dam Square is Amsterdam's semi-official "post-card place" with mimes, and the Royal Palace - originally the Town Hall - is perhaps its most photographed building. The baroque-era building (architect Jacob von Campen) was originally constructed to be Amsterdam's glorious showcase of civic pride, so it's probably a "mistake" that for two hundred years it has been used primarily as a palace - first for the Bonapartist (French) occupation forces of the country, and later as the official Amsterdam residence of the Orange Kings and Queens. (The Netherlands may be quite happy to remain a monarchy, but from what I've it seems that the royal family is occasionally popular in Amsterdam.)
The virtuouso poet and scholar Constantijn Huygens declared that this was "the eighth wonder of the world" - and perhaps the interiors merit that description. From the exterior - on Dam Square - it seems like "just another royal palace," even if it is a stately one. When I was here in March 2008, however, the interior of the palace was closed for updating and renovations, so I'll have to come back and visit the state rooms some other time.
You'll want to take a stroll to the rear of the palace as well, where you can look up and see the monumental rooftop statue of Atlas holding up the world. It's actually a 2200 ball of copper, with that pleasant green hue of age.
Plot: Follows the cross-country adventures of the pot-smoking duo as they try to outrun authorities who suspect them of being terrorists when they try to sneak a bong on board their flight to Amsterdam.
Can you believe I was right there when they were shooting the Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle sequel??? Funny thing is no one knew or recognized these dudes as they were filming; then there I was flipping out like there's ants in my pants, trying to figure out whether to interrupt the filming and jump those guys or what. I wonder if they caught me on film...it would be nice to see myself, even just my hair or toes in the movie! :-)
Now here's the TIP -- walk around, do something, explore the city... you'll never know who you will run into.
Favorite thing: Just back for a semi annual trip to Amsterdam. I can honestly say the city is going to hell fast. The gangs and graffiti is bad, real bad. Dam Square and most canal street are tore up with construction but the gang graffiti is on everything including famous landmarks. Most of the gangs very visable are North African and Arabs. Very scary in the Red Light ! Be very careful even traveling with a partner. Night time was the worse but even during the daytime little thugs are watching you. Stick to the Museum district for everything!! This maybe my last visit to Amsterdam for awhile, Rotterdam is looking much safer!
Favorite thing: Situated in Dam Square is the Royal Palace, open to the public with guided tours daily during June-July 10am-6pm and August 12.30 to 5pm. It was built during the 17th century as the city's town hall and became an official royal residence in the early 1800's.
Favorite thing: Dam square is a hive of activity there are the usual hot dog stands. Human statues which move when you put money in their hat. Sometimes there are more unusal street performer acts like the one in my photo of 2 sailors puppets dancing. There is a person inside the puppets making them dance
Favorite thing: Dam Square is the heart of Amsterdam. The square gets it name from the obvious fact that there was at onetime a dam here that impeeded the flow of the Amstel river. Today Dam Square is a whirlwind of tourists and business people clammering about to get to the city's attractions and shops. Such major attractions as the Royal Palace, Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum and the Nieuwe Kerk flank the square. From Dam Square there are many pedestrian malls stretching out through out all of the Central Amsterdam. Also the Red Light district and the Central train station are just a short walk away. In fact I took this picture as I was rushing off to the train station like so many other Amsterdam communters.
Whilst the Post Office is still the best place to change cash, this place is just about the best if you cant make the Post Office.
Situated at Swissotel on Damrak, they do Wester Union/Money transfers. All at a fair rate.
DO NOT be conned by the Change Kiosks offering free commision and best rates, they are a rip off.
These are some of the best spots for free people watching
Have a seat at our national monument (on pic) on Damsquare. It´s ideal for watching at all the fascinating people that come to Amsterdam and live there. The momument itself is for all Dutch people who died during World War II
If you don´t want to sit on cold stone try the Vondelpark, it´s situated near the Museumsquare. Jog with the locals, try on your skeelers, join in a soccerplay whatever. Also nice with a book and an icecream.
Last but not least is the Museumsquare. Join the crowd, sit back and relax. Once a year in August, there is an open air concert by the Concertgebouw orchestra, one off the best in the world.
Favorite thing: Check out this guy, he's a living statue. They are all over Europe, I don't really get it but people give them money. I give him credit, he was very much like a statue. So much so...a bird landed on his shoulder and left him a surprise. all right, maybe not. But, it could happen.
There are quite a few places we should have visited, and would like to on a future trip. Seven days was a fairly long stay, but there's so much to see and do in the greater Amsterdam area it's hard to see it all in a week. The short Winter days decreased our time spent out and about. We found out quickly that the city didn't seem to really come alive until after nine or ten o'clock or so in the mornings, with a lot of the more popular attractions not being open any earlier than that. On our first few days there and when getting up early and ready to explore, the streets felt dead and fairly deserted except for locals going about their business. Also, some days were cold while we were there, and after spending the day out in the elements we were ready to hibernate in our apartment when the temps started to drop even more in the evenings.
Our list of "we'll do it next time" things would be:
The Royal Palace. Yep, it was right on Dam Square, and you can go inside and see parts of it. I'm sure it sounds goofy that it was right there where we stayed and we didn't even go in, but you just had to be there. So many places to see and visit, we somehow didn't think of it.
The New Church. Also right on the square, just to the right of The Royal Palace when facing it. We did, however, visit The Old Church not far from Dam Square, and listed on our Must-See Activities page.
De Molen van Sloten ("The Windmill from Sloten"). Located not too far outside the main Amsterdam city area, with as the name says, the 1000 year-old village of Sloten adjacent to it. I've read that the village still maintains it's picturesque appearance from the older times, and that the windmill is still operative. It's located at one of the Amsterdam ring canals, and is apparently used to pump water for maintaining water levels in the lower lying areas.