Amsterdam is hands-down one of the coolest and most interesting places I’ve been to. I did no justice to this beautiful city with just 1.5 days planned out for a trip.
Travelling to Amsterdam :
Myself and three other friends decided to spend the weekend there. As it’s already a short trip, why waste time on travelling? We took the Thalys from Brussels to Amsterdam. It’s a high-speed train, racing across Belgium, Netherlands, France and Germany. We boarded at Brussels and it’s a 2 hour journey to Amsterdam and costs around 50 to 60 euros per person based on how early you book.
Staying at Amsterdam:
I’m the kind of person who doesn’t like to spend time at hotel rooms or just chill indoors when I’m on a trip. Vacations when taken just to rejuvenate are different. I always want to be on the move, check out the city, museums, architecture, do touristy as well as non-touristy things and buy souvenirs.
But even I wanted to spend time just chilling at this trippy af hotel !! We stayed at Volkshotel – it’s design is every decor-addict’s dream. The rustic grunge theme with quirky furniture and decor pieces at the lobby immediately blew me away. It was love at first sight. And then came the actual room. Aaah. We took a 4 person room and it had a suspending loft bed and two single beds. And so so comfy. One funny thing though – the bathroom doesn’t have a door , just fancy chains pretending to take cover. We ended up wondering why is this design implemented in a room which was designed for 4 people 😉 😛 But the design still wins my heart ! ❤️
And it had such lovely staff and a hot tub that we didn’t check out (because no time!!!!) and hotel bikes that you can rent out for the day! It’s located centrally too, and just a 2 minute walk away from the nearest tram station on Wibautstraat.
My friends are very well habituated to how the metro and tram works in every city. So I had no problem navigating and completely using public transport through out the trip. Except the one time we took a cab. Public transport in Europe is actually one of the best and easiest option if you just know to use a physical train/metro map! Google feeds you every information you could realistically want, and there’s very little decision-making involved on your part. So take the public transport ! We got our 24hour GVB cards at a kiosk, once we landed in Amsterdam Central. That was valid for unlimited trips across any mode of transport for 24 hours. Cool !
We were on an aim to replenish ourselves with Indian food. So we had most of our meals at Hotel Saravana Bhavan!! What joy it is – to taste that mini 14 idli and ghee masala dosa after a month!!! And for dinner we tried Namaste India – for briyani of course and it was very good indeed! Wish we had such options at Mechelen 🙁
Places to visit:
I was not very ambitious. I just had 6 places in mind – to cover in this short trip. But we ended up doing 4. Could have managed time better, but maybe this will be an excuse to come back 😉
Madam Tussaud’s Museum
I’ve still not been to London, so the wax figurines were still awe inspiring. Some of the personalities were so realistic that it creeped me out :/ and the tiny activities they have within the museum here and there – like getting a digital painting of yourself near Van Gogh figure is quirky and fun! Had a blast with my friend there 🙂
The Amsterdam Centraal is supposedly one of the most happening places here with shopping, food joints and a common area where you can just get yourself something to hog and just people-watch. If I were a localite, it’s something I’d do. Just sit there and watch tourists visit my city with awe and reveling at that 😉 Oh, what joy. <3
This was almostttt missed – but finally we decided to go for it because I was constantly giving the dead grumpy face. I was genuinely sad and disappointed that we are not doing the canal cruise in Amsterdam of all places! And I’m so glad we did! (P.S.Thanks Riz!) The cruise costs about 12-17 Euro per person for an hourly tour around the city. The guided tour explains why each destination is special with a detailed insight on its history which is honestly very informative ! And the view is fantastic from the cruise, so no regrets!! 🙂
A few pictures that we managed to take :
In the Thalys <3
Saravana Bhavan !! _/\_
Our humble abode.
Few other things I so wanted to check out but missed are – Anne Frank House , Rijksmuseum and the I ❤️ Amsterdam sign near Dam Square. Oh! Also the Nine Streets where the localites go to shop. Oh and also the floating flower market. I mean – I’m over ambitious for a 1.5 day visit you could say :/ but oh well, I’m coming back.
If you’re sometime in Europe, add Amsterdam to your bucket list. You wouldn’t regret it 😉 xx