Ok, before I talk about our recent Amsterdam trip, first I have to whinge (complain) a bit: it's the 2nd bank holiday (3 day) weekend this month (yay) that it's been miserable and rainy. I mean, it's like a week away from being June, and I was wearing my heavy wool coat and hat today, and I could see my breath at like 1pm. Global warming, my bum.
But last weekend Hank and I took a spontaneous trip to Amsterdam, land of windmills for a very, very good reason (they have some serious wind). It was such a lovely, laid back city with canals weaving through it. There are bicycles EVERYWHERE. We sadly didn't rent any (I didn't feel I could juggle a bike, camera and map, and one bike crash per year is my limit), but it's definitely the way to travel there. The trams around the city were pretty easy, but mostly we just walked and enjoyed the lovely houses and quiet streets. We spent one day wandering around the city and taking a boat tour of the canals, one day on a trip out to the surrounding area to see the town of Edam (yes, like the cheese but not where cheese is made ironically) and touring working windmills, and another day museum-ing.
Most of the Rijksmuseum seemed to be closed off, but we did see the amazing Rembrandts on display. The Van Gogh museum also had so many pieces of his that I'd never seen even in poster form before, really fabulous stuff.
On a culinary note, we discovered how brilliant Dutch pancakes are. Yuuuuum. If you're ever in London, there's a great place to get some called My Old Dutch, however there's still no comparison with the real deal from the Netherlands.
Ooh, yeah, and they have really good cheese sandwiches in the Netherlands as well.