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Trip Report Amsterdam Short Trip

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Thank you to everyone for making our quick trip to Amsterdam the BEST! It went like clockwork with all the tips. Our hotel, The Owl, was wonderful. The staff couldn't have been more helpful. It is situated near Leidseplein Center and convenient to everything we wanted to do. Tram and bus stops near. We did, however, walk to most places.

So, upon arrival: departed plane into a huge, bustling area and just followed signs and people. Got some Euros and a map at airport and went outside to stand at the B9 bus stop for the 197 bus (red) to Leidseplein. Walked to hotel (located behind the Marriott and across street from Best Western). Bus ride was very good way to go - cost 4 E each. We bought our tickets from a man stationed right at bus stop but could buy them on board as well.

Took a shower and headed out to explore. The people were the very best thing about Amsterdam. They love Americans - we were even told that so I'm not deceiving myself! The only thing we had to watch - those bicyclers - holy cow! Pedestrians are dispensable. Only had one time where I was almost run over and even though he was a bit disgruntled, never was rude to me - just kind of rolled his eyes!

Went to the Anne Frank Huis - what a place. I felt like I was back in the era outside with the cobblestone streets, old houses and that police siren that makes you feel like Nazis are coming. We stood in line and toured building - took approx. two hours for all. Well worth it.

Went on a canal cruise - fun - saw stuff we normally wouldn't have. It rained part of the time so good to be under shelter. The weather was weird - would rain hard for ten minutes and then have sunshine for a couple of hours and then back to rain and then back to sunshine - for two days. The last day was wonderful. Just take a raincoat and umbrella.

Went to the Van Gogh Museum - everyone should go - so wonderful to see all the works but especially the famous ones - The Bedroom, The Yellow House, Sun Flowers, and his self portraits. Good gift shop also.

Do not buy tulips at any place other than airport to bring home. Or maybe can elsewhere but have to have a seal. Mine were taken away in Chicago. Just wanted to see red tulips in yard next spring as a perpetual souvenir.

Bought a red purse at open air market - can't remember the name - it's by dePipj (not sure of that spelling) neighborhood - several blocks long. Good deals and no one hassles you.

Food was sooooooo good. Best meal was chicken sate at Toom Cafe/Restaurant (on Overtoom). It was near our hotel. That is what chicken is supposed to taste like - so tender and juicy.

There are MANY places to eat and we just looked to see if it was cozy and not pricey. Had good house white wines everywhere. Trebbiano Rubicone was to my liking.

People just always had a smile (except for that one biker!) and went out of their way to answer questions. Would like to return and go into the countryside one day.

There are so many small hotels in every district and the whole area is walkable so don't overthink which district to stay in unless you have specific requirements. We didn't see any area where we wouldn't have liked....well, maybe we wouldn't stay in RLD. The 20 somethings would though.

To sum it up: can get around easily, food is good, many places to eat, plenty of small hotels (ours had breakfast included), and the people are welcoming.

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