Amsterdam

After an amazing time in the United States I had to say goodbye to my beloved family and my favorite place on Earth, Oregon. Whenever I travel I realize how lucky I am to call Oregon home. It has so much of “the best” available all in a small area. If you haven’t been there yet, you must, it is amazing. But I had to leave and return to work, but not before I had one last adventure. A long layover in Amsterdam.

I’ve flown through the Amsterdam airport a few times, but this time I planned it so I would have about four days to visit the city.  I arrived, very jet lagged, but it was 9:30am so I had to get out and see the sights. I spent the day in the Museumplein, I visited all three museums. I really enjoyed the Stedelijk Museum, which has modern and contemporary art. There were some cool furniture pieces.IMG_5062

While visiting the museums I was interested in how culturally mixed the visitors were (and later realized that is Amsterdam  is very demographically mixed). At the Van Gogh Museum, which had a great interactive display, I saw a wonderful example of these demographics. I spent the remainder of the day in the Oosterpark neighborhood where I was staying.

Cultural dress in the Van Gogh museum.

Cultural dress in the Van Gogh museum.

On day two I enjoyed a four-hour bike tour of the country side in northern Amsterdam. It was lovely to ride though the country and see the quaint villages. During the afternoon I toured on foot in the city center, following Rick Steves’ audio tours.  And enjoyed a canal boat tour.

Bike parking garage at the train station.

Bike parking garage at the train station.

Touring the Red Light district.

Touring the Red Light district.

On day three I did some more sight seeing in the city and during the afternoon I went on a little adventure. I’d read about a castle that was near the city and was curious about seeing it. So I went to the train station and asked for a ticket to the town nearest the castle with a train station, Weesp. The castle, Muiderslot, has a website which gave very limited directions. It simply said take a bus from the train station to Muiden. So when I got to the train station in Weesp I realized that there was more than one bus that went to Muiden. Luckily, I was able to ask the bus drivers and they helped me on my journey. The castle was cool. Small, but still cool to see. IMG_5124 IMG_5138

That evening I visited the Anne Frank house, which was actually larger than I expected and was an interesting visit.

On my final morning I visited the last standing windmill in Amsterdam city, which is now connected to a brewery, before heading to the airport. It was a lovely visit to Amsterdam and a great way to deal with the sadness of leaving home. IMG_5155

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About Andrea

I am teacher and traveler blogging my experiences living as an expat from the USA. From 2007-2012 I lived and worked in Oregon, USA. From 2012 (when I started blogging) to 2014, I lived and worked in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. In August 2014 I begin living and working in Santa Ana, Costa Rica.
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