Blogs from Netherlands, Europe - page 7


Europe » Netherlands » South Holland » The Hague June 3rd 2015

I arrived in The Hague late last night and met up with my roommates aunt, who is the court reporter for the final trial being held at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). Last night was also the first full night sleep I got since I began travelling so it was well needed. The next morning I went to the ICTY to witness part of this final trial, the man on trial is Ratko Mladic, nicknamed the "Butcher of Bosnia," who was Chief of Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska and is accused of being responsible for the Siege of Sarajevo, the largest massacre in Europe post-WWII. The tribunal was really interesting as at the time i was there the main defence lawyer was questioning a witness, but this lawyer had quite ... read more

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam May 25th 2015

Last night, we were so tired, we just dropped into bed. Today, we took a walking tour of Amsterdam. Some of the sites visited were the Central Station, the Damrak (major road in Amsterdam) Dam Square with the Niewk Church, Kalverstraat (major shopping street), De Papegaai (hidden Catholic Church), Amsterdam Museum, Begijnhof, Mint Tower, Flower Market, Konginsplein and Leidsestraat. That afternoon, we went over to Museumplein to go to the Van Gogh Museum. The line was an hour long and it was going to rain, so we passed. That evening, we visited the Red Light district (De Wallen). Was quite interesting! Unfortunately, the condom store was closed or we would have brought home a lot of souvenirs. Walked a total of almost 12 miles.... read more

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam May 24th 2015

Goedendag! All flights were fine. Had bulkhead seats for overseas flight so had lots of room. It was hard to sleep because most of the flight was during the day/evening hours. Arrived at Schipol airport and took train to main station in Amsterdam. We were able to walk to our hotel which is very nice and centrally located. A few minutes to freshen up and we were off. Walked to the Heineken Experience which was enjoyable but not like the last time I was there. Not much of the actual factory. And we surely enjoyed our 4 beers at the end. After that we took a canal ride. As we were waiting for the boat to come, we started speaking with the gentleman next to us. Lo and behold, he was to the the driver/captain on ... read more

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam May 24th 2015

For our last day in Amsterdam we decided to skip the museums and such and instead did some touristy things. After breakfast we headed out to go on a canal cruise. Along the way I stopped for the obligatory waffle and we grabbed some water bottles at a local supermarket. (One thing that is hard to come by here is a public toilet. Most museums have only one bathtoom no matter how big the museum. Also, we have only come across 2 drinking fountains since we left the US and both of those were at the British Museum in London.) Today was a busy day for canal boat tours. All the boats were packed, including the one we were on. After the boat ride, and another frantic search for a bathroom, we headed towards the Amsterdam ... read more
Amsterdam central station
Bicycle parking garage
Tower as seen from the canal

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam May 23rd 2015

It was another beautiful day in Amsterdam today. It seemed like everyone in the city was out and about. The central area was packed with people. We did a good job though of avoiding lines. We found an out of the way place for a waffle snack and went to two museums less popular with tourists. The first museum was the Amsterdam Museum. Not surpridingly, it was about the history of Amsterdam. The displays were really well done. They usually started with a large painting remenicent of the Dutch masters. (Just to be clear, as far as paintings go in Amsterdam, they'er practically stacking up like chord-wood.) The painting was also on a large vidro screen. The painting was somehow animated while still looking pretty much like the painting on the wall. It was very cleverly ... read more
Brendan next to bust of important person in the history of Amsterdam.
Cookie break
Cat art museum.

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam May 22nd 2015

One thing I didn't know before we came to Amsterdam was how much bikes are used here. They are everywhere being ridden by people of all ages. Compared to those in the US, the bike lanes here are very wide. Most are wide enough to drive a car on. It is a no-no to stroll down the bike lane and it is very important to be alert before trying to cross one. Fortunately, the locals are more than happy to provide instructions if you aren't paying attention. Today we did some more exploring along the many canals in Amsterdam. Also, while our visit to the Belgium Resistance Museum was still fresh in our minds we decided to visit the Dutch Resistance Museum. This one was very well done. They focused on people who were colaborators, those ... read more
View of a canal near our hotel
Wooden locks
Child seat basket on a bike

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam May 21st 2015

Today we took the TGV (high speed train) from Brussels to Amsterdam. Even though we were moving from one country to another the was no passport or customs control. We just boarded the train and away we went. The train didn't leave until almost 3:00 so we spent the morning at the Belgium Resistance Museum. This museum is in a part of town that is decidedly non-touristy. It is easy to tell because all the restaurants are much less expensive. This museum is a little hard to find and you have to ring the bell to gain entry. When we arrived there was an elderly gentlrmsn outside smoking a cigarette so we didn'the get to ring the bell. He ushered us in and we were the only visitors. Compared to all of the other museums we ... read more
Just off the train in Amsterdam
Steve in front of the TGV

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam May 18th 2015

I left Waterford at 4:30am and crossed over the River Suir for the last time. I was on my way to Dublin Airport, where I would fly out to begin my twenty days of travel. First stop, Amsterdam. I arrived in Amsterdam and made my way to my hostel and then onto the city. I arrived in the city at the Central Station and took off down the main street, Damrak. I made my way down to the National Memorial that commemorates all those that lost their lives in WWII and to the Royal Palace. Both the palace and the memorial sit on Dam Square, the original spot where the Dutch people put a dam in the River Amstel, thus creating Amsterdam. At the square, I admired the many bicycles that where around before making my ... read more

Europe » Netherlands May 15th 2015

We left Belgium and then we drove to Holland. We drove toward the islands and went under the Westerscelde tunnel it was very long and scary as it was dark. I saw lots of wind turbines and mummy said they make electricity, I also saw some little windmills. We arrived at a beach in Renesse. I went up a big sandy hill and I ran down it with Sophia and we slid down the sand and it was lots of fun. I didn't go in the sea because the sand was full of shells and they were hurting my feet as they were spikey. It was very windy. We got to our camp site by the river Oudemaas. Daddy and I put the tent up and then I got to blow the air beds up this ... read more

Europe » Netherlands » North Brabant » Baarle-Nassau May 15th 2015

Baarle-Nassau and Baarle-Hertog - the conjoined twins of geography In Netherlands there is a town with the name Baarle-Nassau. In Belgium there is a town with the name Baarle-Hertog. These two towns may be lying in different countries but are in fact one town. The reason it has two names is that through the town there are several borders between Belgium and Netherlands which divides the town in two. So parts of the town is in Netherlands (Baarle-Nassau) and parts of the town is in Belgium (Baarle-Hertog). A town with a country border going through it is a bit odd, but not completely unique. There are other towns and cities in the world that are divided. What makes Baarle-Hertog/Baarle-Nas... read more
One town - two countries
Metal plaque sitting right on the border
Baarle map

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