Maybe it sounds a bit weird, but as an experience traveler I know that you every now and then need this kind of information in advance: electricity in the Netherlands is 230 Volts, alternating at 50 cycles per second. If you travel to the Netherlands with a device that does not accept 230 Volts at 50 Hertz, you will need a voltage converter.
There are three main types of voltage converter. Resistor-network converters will usually be advertised as supporting something like 50-1600 Watts. They are light-weight and support high-wattage electrical appliances like hair dryers and irons. However, they can only be used for short periods of time and are not ideal for digital devices. Some companies sell combination converters that include both a resistor network and a transformer in the same package. This kind of converter will usually come with a switch that switches between the two modes. If you absolutely need both types of converter, then this is the type to buy.
Outlets in the Netherlands generally accept 1 type of plug: Two round pins (see the picture). If your appliances plug has a different shape, you may need a plug adapter. Depending on how much you plan to travel in the future, it may be worthwhile to get a combination voltage converter and plug adapter.
Let’s make no secret of it. We both like a nice cold glass of beer. Being at our travel pace is always a challenge to find a beer we like, which reflects our taste of having a beer. At Alkmaar (and this probably counts for our entire home country) it was rather difficult. We found out that there are a few local beers, only known in the particular area. But anyway nothing really special, which was a bit of a disappointment. Therefore we finally bought the same beer as we drink back home, Grolsch!
Grolsch Brewery (Grolsche Bierbrouwerij) is a Dutch brewery founded in 1615 by Willem Neerfeldt in Groenlo (Grolle). The beer from Groenlo gradually became better known in the surroundings of Groenlo. Through the years the demand for Grolsch beer shifted from a local to national and eventually international level. It is a bit bitter and has a pale colour. You can taste the hop flavour, and has a alcohol content of 5 percent. You should try it!
I guess we all agree on this on; there is nothing more exciting than going travelling - exploring another country, experiencing a different culture, travelling around in new ways, sampling the local cuisine and chatting to the local people for a different perspective on life.
However during our travels we learned that there is one certain thing that you should be aware of and prepared for to make sure that the trip is as easy and enjoyable as possible. We always try to see everything once we're there, but this is not always an act of responsible travelling. We always talk to the locals and we know that they have the information about just the right spots to visit and how to undertake them. It will not only enhance your experiences but also avoid any unnecessary hassles.
For me the travel tips I have written down in this section made the most of mine travel experience and I came home in the same happy, healthy state that I left.
The swirly pissoirs here, topped with the cartoon character "Miffy, bring to mind the old joke about the Admiral and the Field Marshall at the annual Combined Services Dinner:
As the Field Marshall finishes his business with a quick shake, a rezip and heads towards the door the Admiral admonishes him, "Excuse me Sir! At Dartmouth we were taught to wash our hands after using the toilet."
To which the Field Marshall responds, "Actually Dear Chap, at Sandhurst we were taught not to pee on our hands in the first place!"
Ha, OK "Toilet Humour"! But the point is that the arty pissoirs are just that, so follow the Field Marshall's example ;P
A local custom is the welcome party for Sinterklaas. Especially loved by children. Not so strange, since this man, Sinterklaas, is bringing gifts from Spain. In 2011 Sinterklaas arrived in The Netherlands on november 12. He will leave the country again after his birthday on december 5.
Once a year, in 2011 it was in July, there is a concert on the Utrecht Canals. Diffferent musicians play classical music, while the audience is listening from both sides of the canal-walls. Or you can use a boat to get a VIP seat; with a nice picknick basket.
Like anywhere else in the world, locals and tourists love nothing better than to sit in the sunshine outside a cafe either alone or chatting with friends and watch the rest of the world go by... fascinating.. we all do it!!! Utrecht is full of little cafes and restaurants where we can indulge in this most relaxing of activities.
In Holland in general and above all in Utrecht you'll see that everyone uses a bicycle rather than a car, for short or even long trips
Sometimes you'll hear Dutch people saying: "You want me to give you a ride?" They mean by bike of course!
It seems Utrecht residents enjoy food from a wall. There were several of these things in Brugge, and we wouldn't consider buy food from here unless all the restaurants and stores were closed...and we didn't have a bag of chips to eat.
Too young for a little job, but.....it is rewarding playing your flute in the shopping malls.....
pedestrian areas...so everything is quiet, no cars, buses, trams or other noise.
She did her utmost and was doing really fine.
How different her books were from mine!
Hers are really designed for children, pretty to see, with nice drawings and sayings......and I remember my Duvernoy & Czerny piano books: so boring and unpleasant .....that was really hard work......for the little 7 year old girl I was at the time!
things have changed a lot for children, which is a great thing....
This girl showed courage and determination: she will make it!
And the more musicians in the streets the better!
This is more or less a sneak preview for I have not asked my niece if it were ok to place this pic here. But hey! I do not think she knows I am on this site :).
After a couple is wedded, it is tradition to throw rice at them as symbol of hope for fertility for the newly weds. Click on this pic and see the rice fall! :)
As soon as a ray of sun starts to shine, the streets along the canals and even down by the water will be filled with tables and chairs from the cafés. Look how Dutch people like to sit watching at the street and profitting from every minute of sun they have.
Parking your bicycle in the city center and especial at the Centraal Station is a challenge.
The Signs VERBODEN FIETSEN TE PLAATSEN (forbidden to park bicycles) does not help at all.
We came across these two locals, who decided that the pavement was the best place to soak up the sun. They were not interested in the passersby and was rather upset by me taking their photo!
We saw a number of people fishing along the canal. Not sure if it was done for recreation purposes or to feed the family.
I love this hotel. It is an old building (from the 1800's) that was originally built by Louis...more
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