[R] Freisland - Northern Holland

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September 13th 2007
Published: September 21st 2007
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We spent two nights in Leeuwarden, staying with Brandt's cousin Femke, her partner and their cats. It was nice to stay in a proper house again after living in our small flat in London, and then travelling the past few weeks.

Yesterday we did a lot of driving around the small Friesland villages recommended by Femke. We drove into Gaastmeer for a coffee, and then onto Heeg where we had a good lunch, then continued along the coast. We saw a lot of farmland, and the traditional high roofed farm houses where hay used to be kept in the top levels and thrown down to the animals. We also saw a few traditional windmills on our way to Workum, with the new wind turbines visible also. Our last stop in the afternoon was Hindeloopen where we drove along the sea dykes. We also saw the village church which is on a serious lean! When we got back to Femke's house in the evening she had prepared for us a typical Dutch dinner of apple sauce, potato and sausage.

This morning we visited the small fishing town of Harlingen. It is a neat little village centred around its port and nestled behind the sea dykes. Its central street had plenty of boutique shops and outdoor eating areas which kept us busy for the morning.

We drove back to Leeuwarden in the afternoon, and Femke took us biking around the city which was fun way to see bits of the town we wouldn't see driving around. Old buildings (and especially the big ones) have trouble staying upright in Holland - Femke showed us another church leaning over while we were biking around.

We are driving back to Amsterdam at present, where we will fly out from on Saturday to begin our Contiki tour from Madrid to Rome.

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