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Trip Report Amsterdam Trip Report

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I apologize for this late report. My father went into the hospital during our trip and passed a week after we returned. Very difficult.

Anyway - it was a great trip thanks to the great members here!
We stayed at the Clemens Hotel. We took the airport shuttle which was very easy. It's a small, boutique hotel with a LOT of steps. They couldn't be nicer handling all of the luggage, but it is a steep climb each time you go back to the hotel. The room was small, but adequate with good wifi. Location was what made it great. It is right by Nine Little Streets, Dam Square, and the Ann Frank House. Perfect. Breakfast was good - not special.

Day One: Jet lagged, we did an alternative tour with Sanderman's. They showed us street art, coffee shops, etc. My son enjoyed this somewhat but was disappointed we didn't go into the coffees hops. So of course we returned. Dampkring and the Bulldog are the two I recall, though my son found many when he went out at night without me. We also took a canal tour (hop on) which we found boring.

Day 2: We rented bikes. Best decision we made. There is no doubt that riding a bike in Amsterdam is challenging and you need to be aware of pedestrians even more than cars. But we really enjoyed biking to local restaurants. We only took the tram once - the day it poured.

We visited Ann Frank House. We made reservations THREE months in advance. TRUST ME - you do not want to wait in the long line. Included in our reservation was a 30 minute "lecture," which was very interesting with pictures. The museum is very small - very worth doing!

Then we biked to Vondelpark We loved this. It was beautiful and totally enjoyable to bike through the park.

Dam Square and the palace visits

We stopped at the area across from Bulldog which had many outdoor bars/restaurants for drinks.

Day 3 Favorite tour was with those Dam Boat Guys. They were amazing. They meet you near Ann Frank House and they take you on a small boat to have an intimate tour of the canals. They are great at getting people talking to each other - extremely nice day.

We shopped at Nine Little Shops. We found some great presents for ourselves and family. It was such a pleasure.

Day 4: Trip to Utrecht - We biked to the train station and took the bikes on the train. I couldn't have done this without my son who did all the work. The town was lovely and there was great shopping.

Day 5: Rijksmuseum - Again we took our bikes and rode under the museum - quite a view! We did the tourist thing and took pictures at I Love Amsterdam. Then we spent about 2 hours in the museum. I am not an art museum type, but was awed. Loved it.

Red Light District - Total bore and way too many people.
Day 6: Heineken Experience - We only did this because it was pouring. But I'm glad we went. It was fun. There is a lot to do for the cost of admission. If the day had been beautiful, I probably wouldn't have gone, though my son really liked it.

Restaurants: We ate mostly in local places near our hotel. Our favorites were Walem Cafe and Greenwood. We also ate at Morlangs (not so great), Herengracht (really good), and Seafood bar (rip off expensive)

We did a lot of just wandering too. It was a great trip with my 20 year old son.

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