Well where do I start, what a beautiful city. I fell in love with it as soon as I got off the plane, found the hotel that I was staying at, i think the name of it was Hotel De La Haile, just a 1 minute walk from the city centre, it was cheap, comfortable and had a great breakfast.. Anyway after checking in, went for a walk and found myself in a coffee shop (Blue Dolphin, I think) and bought some pot and had a joint and what a nice place to do it at.. Left there and went for a walk just admiring the canals, impressive architecture and of course the people, who were friendly and helpful...
get a map and just walk from sight to sight and look at everything along the way!! look at the excellent architecture, and the variety of it. look at the hundreds of canals and bridges over them! and even the parked bicycles can be photogenic! did you know that only 2 million of the population of the netherlands dont have a bicycle!! (statistically).
and do one for the night view too , and another for the Queens Day visit!! well worth that wander!
Amsterdam is one of the best cities in the world for just walking. Strike out in any direction and you'll find interesting architecture, parks, canals, shopping areas, museums, restaurants and more.
Yes, you need to learn to be alert when walking in or across the bicycle lanes. But once you've mastered the art of dodging cyclists, all you need is a comfortable pair of walking shoes. If you get tired, you can always walk to the nearest busy street and catch a bus or tram. But if you can walk a couple of miles comfortably you can walk pretty much anywhere of interest in Amsterdam.
Take any tour of the city, walking, boating, biking, and your guide will inevitably recommend that you continue to cast your gaze upward to view the many types of gabled buildings lining the streets and canals. Good advice, but don't stop there. Throughout the city are numerous opportunities to see artistic form married to practical function.
This photo of a street lamp, taken during a walk along Damrak, near the National Monument, displays an artistry suggesting its own atomic dynamo may power such a lamp. Art is everywhere one looks in Amsterdam.
I didn't have enough time here.
With little time to see it all, I just in a nice little coffee shop with a cup of coffee and a map, I traced out a route which took me in a loop around the main part of the downtown area then headed out. The canal ring is where I spent most of my time. Just wander the canals and hit little shops along the way. I'm not a big museum guy, but there are tons of them from history to art to sex to cannabis.
Just keep walking along the canals.
You will see lots of goodies, like the Montelbaans toren build in 1512.
or a Dutch Reiger ....
or a loose crane ....
or an old bridge ....
or a great canal view.
The canals and boats are what Amsterdam is famous for. Walking along the canals, are exquisite homes and most people living on the water will have a boat. Houses along the water look a lot alike. The way the home owners show off their wealth and differentiate their homes from those of their neighbors are by adding gables to their houses.
The canals of Amsterdam are relatively busy today. In addition to the moored houseboats and pleasure craft, there are several fleets conducting canal tours by boat and a fairly timely water taxi that stops at most major sights of interest. Some purveyors still make deliveries using the waterways to access shops, restaurants and markets.
Unfortunately after the jet-lag of 8 hours of travelling, and another 8 hours the next day, the prospect of visiting the streets of Amsterdam wasn't particularly inviting, but BOY was i wrong. a country that has canals built around, is below sea-level. But beside's that, it is a very quaint, but expensive place to visit. The architecuture is very European, rather narrow, with the locals prefering the mode of cycling or driving.. An experience that i will nvr forget is passing a shop with ladies in windows beckoning ppl to come in and enjoy their "services"... i think that was the red light district...
When I was walking the streets , suddenly 2 police stopped me...! I was so shocked because I had not done enything wrong ! They asked me if I had all my money....They also told me how to hold on to my purse ....Nice guys!
Staalstraat is a narrow street with some nice shops and pubs. Very touristy, I admit, but lively. I'll put some photo's in the Shopping Tips section.
Halfway Staalstraat you cross the Groenburgwal (canal) with a grand view of the Zuiderkerk again.
The perfect way to see the city is by walking. Pick up your favorite canal street and enjoy the walk while admiring the view and taking lots of pictures.
There is so much history to absorb in Amsterdam, and its easy to catch the metro around the city. Below are some of the pics from my walks in the city
I just love to walk around the city and seeing what she presents to me. In this case she gave me a lovely Kodak moment. What do you think?
The best thing to do in Amsterdam is to walk around, take pictures, sit in cafes, eat, have a drink, smoke, and walk around some more... and repeat 'til you can't walk anymore!