Things I Have Learned In Amsterdam

Things I Have Learned In Amsterdam

IMG_7372

“The pleasure we derive from journeys is perhaps dependent more on the mindset with which we travel than on the destination we travel to.”Alain de Botton

There are over one million bikes within the city limits, yet there are only about 700,000 people in Amsterdam.

DSC00130
Stairs in Amsterdam are many and very steep –  like ladders.  (Rembrandt’s house)

IMG_7401
There are 51 well-known museums that are dedicated to varied topics from the history of sex to the use of marijuana to the life of a famous painter. (Stedlijk Museum)

DSC00141
The passageway of the Rijksmuseum has the best acoustics in the city and many professional musicians come there to practice.

IMG_7231
The majority of Amsterdam is below sea level. At its lowest point, it is 6.7 metres below sea level. If climate change causes even a small increase in global sea levels, Amsterdam may go under.

DSC00191
The entire city of Amsterdam was built on piles — massive stakes that are driven into the ground. These piles laid the foundation for every building in the city. This means that if you stay at one of the many Amsterdam hotels, you are actually staying on stilts. Over 6,000 piles are used to hold up Central Station. Regular maintenance keeps these piles in load-bearing condition.

DSC00114

The lines at the Anne Frank House rivals the Uffizi and the Louvre. Get tickets online in advance.

IMG_7189

Amsterdam Is full of Polyglots. Polyglot is a term used to describe anyone who is fluent in more than two languages. 86 percent of Amsterdam residents are polyglots, speaking English, Dutch and a third language fluently. This makes a trip to Amsterdam an easy experience for English speakers.

Amsterdam residents are the second largest consumers of coffee in the world.

DSC00358

It’s estimated that during the Golden Age (put here between 1580-1670), when Dutch painters were among the best of the world, 5 million paintings were made – surely one of the most amazing Amsterdam facts. Almost every Dutch home had at least one painting. Now we have iPhones to take pictures of paintings. ( self-portrait Rembrandt – Rijksmuseum)

IMG_7201

Amsterdam natives are the tallest in the world. According to several different studies, this height is attributed to their DNA and healthy eating habits.

IMG_7194

Tulips, tulip fields and flower bulbs are typically Dutch. Yet, tulips do not originate from the Netherlands. The first tulip bulbs were imported from Turkey to the Netherlands, where they proved to grow extremely well on Dutch soil.

IMG_7509
Amsterdam knows how to brew a beer. The Netherlands is the world’s biggest exporter of beer. Twice as much beer is exported from the Netherlands than the United States, the second biggest exporter.

Amsterdam Has More Canals Than Venice .

DSC00113

Often called the “Venice of the North,” Amsterdam boasts over 165 canals that compose a comprehensive network throughout the entire city.

DSC00174
Amsterdam has one of the most famous Red Light Districts in the world with window prostitution. There are almost 500 such windows in Amsterdam, next to brothels etc. Most  of the girls are Eastern European, Indonesian and Malaysian. Few are Dutch. There is definitely a lot of human trafficking involved in bringing these girls here.  There are no photos allowed. ( Belle – statue for prostitutes all over the world)

IMG_7355
There are over 200 ‘coffee shops’ in Amsterdam where you are allowed to buy up to five grams of cannabis (marijuana or hash). Since the 1970s, buying of cannabis has been decriminalized. Five grams, by the way, is enough to stay high for several days.

DSC00346

Someone dropped their hash packet when i was having lunch . He didn’t know. I waited and decided to pick it up and return it. That would not have happened in the states.

DSC00407
In 2008, a tobacco smoking ban was introduced in Dutch cafes and restaurants, but you are still allowed to smoke marijuana and hashish in Dutch coffee shops – if only you don’t mix it with regular tobacco… That is bad for you.

Fly safe,

JAZ

 

Nine Reasons To Visit Amsterdam That Don’t Involve Smoking Pot And One That Does

Nine Reasons To Visit Amsterdam That Don’t Involve Smoking Pot And One That Does

“Some tourists think Amsterdam is a city of sin, but in truth it is a city of freedom. And in freedom, most people find sin.” John Green

Amsterdam is  probably the best place to visit a coffee shop since this is perfectly legal.You are allowed to buy other drugs as well, but you will have to find someone on the street. If you’re not sure whether a pill you bought is good, you can send it to the government for free and they will test it for you and send it back.

The Diary Of Anne Frank was the most important book I have ever read. It was how I learned about the holocaust and maybe even love. It hit me hard. There are long queues for The Anne Frank House if you don’t get advance tickets. . Get your tickets online before you go. It is a bucket list things for me.

Photos of rainbow carpeted flower fields and bunches of tulips are the iconic symbol of the Netherlands. A short ride away from Amsterdam in Lisse is the Keukenhof Gardens. From March to May tourists, visit this beautiful flower park. I might catch a few windmills on the way.

Amsterdam is a pioneer in green and eco-friendly cities. it is listed as one of the fifteen safest cities in the world.

Watch out for cyclists. The city is famous for bikes. It is a healthy and easy way to see the city.

The Dutch love their street markets. Every day of the week you will find vendors setting up stalls somewhere in the city. There are different markets for antiques, art, produce, fashion and vintage. There is something for everyone at Amersterdam’s markets.

Gouda and Edam are among my many favorite cheeses. There are five traditional cheese markets in the Netherlands. I’m planning to go to one.

Canals are everywhere. Getting around can be a bit confusing because everything sort of looks the same. ( especially after you visit the coffee shops) . It gives the city a unique and beautiful atmosphere.

Amsterdam’s most famous and unique tourist site is the red light district. Whatever your opinion of women on sale in windows, you won’t see it anywhere else. Pictures are forbidden and your camera will be confiscated if it is seen.

There are plenty of museums to check out as well. The Van Gogh museum has permanent queues in front of it, to see some beautiful paintings by the most famous Dutch artist of all time – even if he wasn’t well known at all in his lifetime. The “Potato Eaters” is there. The Rijksmuseum is huge and needs several hours to go through and has many paintings by Vermeer and Rembrandt.

Goede reis,

JAZ