Blogs from North Holland, Netherlands, Europe - page 5

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Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam December 8th 2018

May 20,2018 I've always enjoyed traveling solo. I love the freedom of being able to decide on where I want to go each day; of how long I want to spend in a particular museum or site; of deciding when, what, and where I want to go to eat. Last May, as I entered my 76th year, the idea of being alone in a foreign city and possibly having a medical emergency made me think that perhaps being solo wasn't the best idea. Please welcome to my blog my travel companion, my nineteen year old granddaughter, Stella Jarmulowicz. I'm about to share with you the highlights of Carolyn's and Stella's Excellent Adventures in Amsterdam; Bruges, Belgium; and Iceland. Spoiler alert: she was a great travel companion! We left Newark, NJ aboard an Icelandair flight which first ... read more
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Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam November 7th 2018

I am currently winging my way back home. I flew from Athens to Amsterdam yesterday evening and this morning boarded a nonstop to PDX. (I spent the night at the Hilton airport hotel in Amsterdam.) This has been another good trip. The high points included Japan, especially seeing Kyoto for the first time. I can see why people get deeply involved in Japanese gardens. There is something compelling yet restful about them. I’m glad to have visited Beijing, especially the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace, but I will not be in a hurry to return to China. Cambodia was the unexpected high point of the trip. I loved Siem Reap and visiting the Angkor sites. Bangkok struck me as a big modern city with some worthwhile sights and I might try to go back there ... read more

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam November 2nd 2018

After leaving my friends, I took a train to Amsterdam Centraal. With my heavy bags, I just took a taxi to my hotel in Westerpark. The Conscious Hotel was our designated accommodation for the training, even though the training itself was held at other locations. This is yet another modern hotel, but placed in a former factory in a beautiful park. So the location was nice, but kind of far away from everything. Check in was similar to my first night, where we had to do it ourselves. But my room was ready and it was huge. And freezing. Someone had left the window open and it didn't warm up until well after I went to bed.... I was able to take a nap and a quick shower before meeting our group at a nearby restaurant, ... read more
Breakfast at the Conscious Hotel
Conscious Hotel
REM Eiland

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam October 15th 2018

Traveling is addictive. I know, because I’m willing to spend money I don’t have, dismiss my family and my job to disappear on a whim, and tolerate loads of discomfort and pain just to get my fix. I’m so deep in, there’s no kicking it now. Hello, my name is Andrea, and I’m a travel junkie. According to the cartoons of my childhood, teleporting should be a thing by now. But it’s not. So, layovers have become my essential travel tool. Those long haul 18+ hours flights, seated in coach, are the true definition of hell. But. Can’t stop. Won’t stop. I love Amsterdam and it has become my preferred halfway point for any African or Middle Eastern excursion. Years ago, I loathed this stopover and I simply referred to Schiphol as Shit Hole. Then one ... read more
Amsterdam - Not Just Cheese & Dykes
Floaty McBoaty, Amsterdam style
Cheese Museum

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam October 14th 2018

Today we cruised into Amsterdam at 10am, our last port of call. After breakfast we started to pack bags. Lunch then a lovely cruise around the canals in a small glass topped motor boat. Lots of typical Dutch homes on the canal banks and being Sunday lots of people about. Bikes everywhere ridden by young and old. Plenty of museums, shops and offices around too. Across on the newer side of river are plenty modern glass buildings. Tonight we pack and tomorrow leave our ship at 6.15am for flight to Prague. So its early rise at 4.30am. ... read more
Amsterdam harbour
Our canal boat
Amsterdam old town

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam September 10th 2018

After 18 months of travelling we headed home to spend exactly one month in the Netherlands. What a month! We were looking forward to and needed some serious TLC from our loved ones, as most of them we had not seen for 1,5 years. Being in the Netherlands as part of our travels was quite an intense experience. On a daily basis we have met for dinner, drinks, a coffee or tea or lunch with different friends and family. Some of it planned, because we wanted to make sure that we could spend sufficient quality time with them, but we also left time open for spontaneous meet ups. We felt loved by our friends and we felt at home with our families. We laughed, drank wine (a lot!), we ate great food (a lot!), partied. We ... read more
Family & friends
Family & friends
Family & friends

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam August 3rd 2018

Just a few countries this time. France we have visited a few times in the past but the Netherlands and Iceland are new for us. A meme that circulated at some stage noted that "I would love to visit that place but it is just too far away - said no Australian ... ever". Of course, it would be more accurate to refer to Australians who travel. We travel, and distance has never been an issue but, just quietly, there were times on the Brisbane - Singapore leg, sitting bolt upright for over 7 hours overnight on a seat that refused to recline, I definitely was not looking forward to the remaining 15 hours of the trip. Long haul air travel was losing its allure. I may have given some indication of discomfort, frustration or something. ... read more
Urban concrete batching
Amsterdam Police Station
Magere Brug over Amstel River

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam July 28th 2018

We knew the day was going to be long, what we didn’t know was it was going to become 2 days. Neither of us slept well. Susan still didn’t feel great after last night and then we had to wake up early so that we could get on the shuttle to the airport. We arrived at the airport and we were the only ones from Viking taking TAROM air (the Romanian airline) Almost everyone else was on British Air. We got to the check-in desk and she checked me in and said, “you will have to pick up your bags in Detroit”. Wait, our flight is thru JFK. Originally it was thru Detroit but when a schedule change happened that gave us 15 minutes in Detroit to go thru customs, go thru immigration and passport control, ... read more
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Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam July 25th 2018

Cycles and canals. Such a cruisy start to day 1 in Amsterdam. No nonsense this time leaving the airport. We found the train then a taxi to the door of our hotel. We had been warned about the steep staircase but wow…. what a mountain to climb! Fortunately the guy at reception helped us lug our bags up and offered us bottled water. We left the bags in his capable hands and headed off for our first look-see at the canals of Amsterdam. We had an easy 3 minute stroll to the Westerkerk Protestant church which is located just alongside the Anne Frank house. One look at the crowds and we were pleased we hadn’t pre- booked a ticket. Even with a specific entry time those poor blighters were already heating up whilst waiting, waiting, waiting ... read more
Canal buildings
Canals Couples Coronas Cycles
Pancake breakfast

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam July 22nd 2018

Today was officially our first day in Amsterdam. We decided that since Amsterdam is an incredibly small city, and we’re only here for 3-4 days, and it’s our last city for the trip, that we would just take this time to chill out. Have a really nice relaxing few days in Amsterdam before heading home, and not pressure ourselves to do too much. Today was the perfect day to start that, since because of our late night last night we slept in until 10am! We left the bnb at 12 and headed straight to brunch- The Avocado Show. This is a restaurant that we have been so excited to go to since before we even added Amsterdam to our trip. It’s basically a restaurant based on avocado- every single item on the menu is avocado based. ... read more




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