Blogs from South Holland, Netherlands, Europe

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Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » Rotterdam August 17th 2019

August 16, 2019 – Rotterdam, Netherlands – End of the first leg of the voyage & start of the second - Weather: 69°F/21°C, partly cloudy, wind 13.9 mph, humidity 64° We arrived at the mouth of the Scheur at approximately 3:30 am and proceeded up river at a modest 9 knots in the dark. When we arose at 5:30 we were still moving forward. The Captain had informed the ship last evening that several miles from the pier he would have to turn around and proceed slowly stern first to the berth in the shadow of the Erasmus Bridge which crosses the Nieuwe Maas. A relatively small number of guests, 250 ended their journey and left the ship and were replaced by an equal number. Rotterdam, today home to 1.3 million people, has one of the ... read more
2_Weathervane
3_Erasmus Bridge
4_Canal in Gouda

Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » Gorinchem August 3rd 2019

14th July - 3rd August 2019 After a quick look at Trakai castle we crossed over from Lithuania to Poland. Jim had identified a national park camping spot on his phone and recorded the approximate co-ordinates where the pin seemed to be and we headed there. It was a very quiet rural area with only the odd small house dotted along the beautiful, slow flowing river of crystal clear water and reed beds. The road was an unpaved track but passable. After a few minutes wandering up and down where Kate kept saying we should turn into our camp site we realised there was no camp. We had turned back towards the main road when we saw some kayaks on the river and a sign, so Jim hopped out to read it. It said (Jim guessed, ... read more
Trakai Castle, Lithuania
Hitler's bunker
Most of the bunkers have collapsed

Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » The Hague July 26th 2019

Picking up where we left off last night... We headed to Damrak 5 to board our dinner cruise. It was an open air boat, which would ordinarily be nice, but due to the extreme heat here, made things a little uncomfortable. But, we survived, and enjoyed a canal-eye view of all things Amsterdam. We saw many houseboats in varying condition and learned that no more may be sold, so they are at a premium. We saw many locals on boats and in the water seeking respite from the heat and at one point stumbled upon hundreds of boats that created a kind of "redneck yacht club" (a country song recalled by Rich). The dinner was pretty good but, universally, we all particularly liked the red pepper soup served in a cappuccino mug. Sitting at the next ... read more
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Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » Gouda July 25th 2019

The Gouda Cheese Market is only on Thursday’s. So that’s where we headed today. About a two-hour drive got us there and we met up with friend Hans again, this time joined by his daughter Sterre-Lieve as well as his son we met several days ago. I believe we may be talking them into visiting us next year. Marion and I had visited the market back in 2002 with our daughters, but we did a more thorough tour of the city today. As with many of the Dutch cities, Gouda has a lot of history that dates back hundreds of years, not sure but at least back to say 1200 or so. The Sint-Jan church dates back to the 1500’s and was built as a Catholic Church, as all of the older churches were, but was ... read more
Gouda cheese market
Catering to tourists, with plastic cheese
Farm girls (maybe actors) pose with tourists

Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » The Hague July 21st 2019

Friday was a day set aside to visit with the Doreleyers family in Schijndel, my father’s hometown about a 25-minute car ride from where we’re staying. Dutch and English were freely intermingled and Marion is beginning to understand some of it. We had dinner back at the house from Albert Heijn, the grocery store at the end of our street that has many freshly prepared foods. On Saturday July 20 we drove the 1 1/2 hour to The Hague to meet up with our friend Hans, from the Ottawa-The Hague Twinning Games back in the eighties. We started with some excellent coffee at Capriole at the Fokkerkade from where we travelled by tram the rest of the day. Sandwich of the day at the Kicking Horse Cafe was a roasted chicken sandwich with a whole bunch ... read more
Market at The Hague
Market at The Hague
Van Kleef Distillery

Europe » Netherlands » South Holland July 20th 2019

July 19/20 Boarding the Viking Eir (pronounced "air") The next leg of our journey begins in the port of Amsterdam just 10 minutes from our hotel. The Viking ship Eir sat glistening in the sun waiting for us to board and as on previous trips we were welcomed aboard relieved of our luggage and invited to lunch in the Aquavit Lounge until our room was available. Tom and I already knew the routine, once our room was ready a crew member came to find us and lead us to our room to explain all the amenities. The dinner hour now near we were hoping to meet a few couples to help make this journey fun and happily memorable. Tom and I went to the table at the back of the dining room on the left side ... read more
Wooden shoes in process
waiting on the ladder looking at the 300 year old gears
Best Dutchman picture ever - He's calling for help

Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » The Hague May 10th 2019

Nog 1 nacht te gaan en dan is het eindelijk zo ver. Het gene waar ik maanden lang naar heb uitgekeken en voor heb gespaard: ik ga voor een jáár lang helemaal alleen op reis! Maar waarom zou iemand helemaal alleen voor zo'n lange tijd weg van huis willen gaan? Sommige doen het om iets te verwerken, anderen doen het om van de dagelijkse sleur te ontsnappen. Ik doe het voornamelijk om twee redenen: 1. Ik wil mijzelf (her)ontdekken om er achter te komen wat ik verder in mijn leven wil gaan doen. Na twee keer een studie niet afgemaakt te hebben voelde ik mijzelf een beetje doelloos en heb ik wat horeca baantjes en zelfs heel even in de sales gewerkt. De horecabaantjes waren best prima en met name bij mij laatste baan bij Vitesse ... read more

Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » Rotterdam April 19th 2019

First, let me fix a photo, the one of a work by Hockney that was so inspired by Van Gogh. It showed up funny on the blog. Also, Fran pointed out that the group of dancers in the pub on the boat were probably in their 40s, not 60s. More on them later. Yesterday, I wrote about the tulips and the visit to Keukenhof, and now, back at the ship, having finished our outstanding dinner at Jansz, we had our first evening and overnight traveling. We were moving along through a canal at a moderate speed, guessing 15 knots. We felt nothing; heard nothing; no engine or generator noise, even when another ship or barge passed by making a wake. If you didn’t know you were on a boat you wouldn’t know you were on a ... read more
Erasmus Bridge
Central Station Rotterdam
Tree Houses Rotterdam 1970s

Europe » Netherlands » South Holland November 23rd 2018

Plan na dnes teda holandsko a mestecko maastricht. Ranajky totozne ako v predchadzajucom ubytku len s tym, ze tu kopa erasmus studentov zo strednych skol (na vs vyzerali neaky mlady). Na cestu si berem banan, jablko a vajicko. Este kupeny listok na flixbus, ktory stoji o polovicu menej ako vlak. No rano ziadny dobry spoj. Potesil aspon fungujuci 20perc kupon na zlavu. Rychlo krokom po nabrezi smer na vzdialenu zel stanicu guillemenis. Prichadzam 10min pred odchodom vlaku, tukam do automatu, tu tri rozne stanice mojho mesta, volim len maastricht. Na moju kolaj najskor prichadza iny vlak, o 5min vsak uz spravny. Tento neni ic ale regional, podla toho aj vyzera. Zastarale vozne (nase su omnoho lepsie, no ale zas uz mame vela novych suprav), dnu par ludi. Tesne pred hranicami (ktore clovek ani nevie, ze prejde) ... read more

Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » The Hague November 3rd 2018

I woke up fairly early on my last day in Amsterdam. I hoped to get a small breakfast from the hotel restaurant but it was either all you can eat for 25 euros or nada. Instead, I went out for a little walk along the canals and cute streets, looking for a nice little shop to get a little food. It was a nice stroll, and I enjoyed seeing the buildings that had settled, tilted or cracked significantly. It was something we had all discussed a bit, curious as to why we didn't see many. But I think if you looked closely, you could. It is still amazing as many of these buildings are very old, built on timber piles that penetrate only into the first sand layer. I also enjoyed seeing the city workers cleaning ... read more
Royal Palace
Parliament
Oliebollen stall




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