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Amsterdam's distinctive defense tower began life around 1487 as the end point of the city wall. The term schreien suggests the Dutch word for wailing. As lore would have it, this "Weeping Tower" was where women came to cry when their sailor husbands left for sea and to cry again when they did not return (there's a gable stone from 1569 of a woman and a boat on the Gelderskade side). But the word schreier actually comes from an Old Dutch word for "sharp" and since the old city wall made a sharp corner here, it is a rather more accurate derivation for the tower's name. It's also famous as the point from which Henry Hudson set sail to America. A plaque on the building tells you that he sailed on behalf of the Dutch East India Company to find a shorter route to the East Indies. In his failure, he came across Canada's Hudson Bay and later—continuing his unlucky streak—New York harbor and the Hudson River. He eventually landed on Manhattan and named it New Amsterdam. The VOC café attached has a lovely view and serves jenever and other delights. On the next floor up, there's a nautical shop for modern-day sailors.
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I'm a little late in getting to it - our trip was in April 2013 - but I would like to share my trip report for all the wonderful Fodorites who helped in the planning (Thank You, Thank You!!), for all future Read more
We saw London, we saw France and lots more.
Day 1 (9/18) Amsterdam
Well I have put off this trip report long enough so here goes. I am writing this to pay forward the help and advice which I received from Read more
We are spending three days in Amsterdam, five in Rome, two in Florence and three days in Venice the first 2 weeks of May. Read more
· News & Features
Amsterdam has an incredible past, enticing sights, and tasty cuisine.... Read more
The Netherlands' charming capital city has a bit of everything—bikes and bars, cafes and canals,... Read more
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