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Activities in Amsterdam (biking and brewery)

Activities in Amsterdam (biking and brewery)

Old Apr 22nd, 2013, 12:53 PM
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Activities in Amsterdam (biking and brewery)

My friend and I (in our 20s)are spending 3 and a half days in Amsterdam.
We are planning on doing the touristy stuff, such as museums, canal boat rides, and walking around the towns.

However we were thinking, one day we could go biking to the country side, or somewhere scenic, does anyone have any recommendations on that idea (where to go)?

Should we maybe take a day trip somewhere nearby, if so which place would you recommend?

Lastly, we were looking into going tot the Heineken brewery, but I have heard many mixed reviews. So I was thinking (from my reading) of going to a different brewery or a beer cafe.
What exactly is a beer cafe? Is there a specific beer cafe or brewery you would recommend we go see.

Thank you.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2013, 01:02 PM
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Have a look at Brouwerij 't Ij: http://www.brouwerijhetij.nl/homepage/spring-paasij/ Much better beer the the gnat's P that Heineken produces.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2013, 01:17 PM
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http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...ite-things.cfm

might find some biking things in this long thead of mine - to me one great day biking is to go along the Amstel River to Breukelen (namesake of Brooklyn!) via small bike paths thru Abcoude and other tiny villages - you can take the train back from Breukelen or go onto nearby Utrecht and put your bike on a train and return to Amsterdam.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2013, 02:17 PM
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Heineken's flagship Amsterdam brewery and that of its sister brand Amstel were torn down some years ago - Heineken left a facade standing behind which there is now an audio-visual presentation before heading to the tour highlight - the tasting room where you can gulp a couple of Heineies as part of the admission fee - once nearly free but now I think substantial.

Thus there is no brewery tour in Amsterdam - but many folks find the comraderie in the drinking room fun as you mix with folks from all over the world.

In olden days when I took the tour thru the real Heineken Brewery before it was demolished it was a great thing to do - but now just a prop for Heineken but still fun I would think.
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Old Apr 22nd, 2013, 04:14 PM
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Activities in Amsterdam (biking and brewery)
Posted by: edye123
My friend and I (in our 20s)are spending 3 and a half days in Amsterdam. We are planning on doing the touristy stuff, such as museums, canal boat rides, and walking around the towns. However we were thinking, one day we could go biking to the country side, or somewhere scenic, does anyone have any recommendations on that idea (where to go)?


I recommend going over to Haarlem to begin your bike ride. If you are there in time for the tulips go south to Keukenhof. See http://tinyurl.com/5nwqzp. If later then you can ride west through the dunes to the coast, and south as far as Den Haag if you wish. Get a bike map at the auto club office opposite the train station or at the Haarlem VVV tourist office in front of the V+D department store. Rent a bike at the train station or at one of the shops nearby.

Pubs throughout Holland are normally called cafes. The older ones are also called "brown bars" or "brown cafes" thanks to the accumulated tobacco tars on the walls. They serve tap beer primarily, along with jonge jenever (ice cold Dutch gin in a traditional fluted glass) and other spirits. My favorite cafes are the Hoppe at the Spui in Amsterdam and the Proeflokaal on Langeveerstraat in Haarlem. Inside smoking is now prohibited in all of The Netherlands.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 03:04 AM
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In general, a "beer cafe" is just a cafe where they serve beer. Usually not one single brand, but a number of different brands. There are a couple in Amsterdam: "Arendsnest" (http://www.arendsnest.nl/), "De Bekeerde Suster" (http://www.debekeerdesuster.nl), "De Brabantse Aap" (http://www.debrabantseaap.nl). The "Bekeerde Suster" also features a (very) small brewery.

There are many more breweries, some small some large, scattered through all of the Netherlands. In my hometown (Amersfoort), my favorite is "de Drie Ringen". The larger ones that certainly are worth a visit include Grolsch in Boekelo and Brand in Echt (the latter being the oldest in the Netherlands).
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 03:05 AM
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Darned, the hyperlinks include extra characters. You need to remove the closing brace from them to work. Sorry!
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 11:17 AM
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Breda in southern Holland is also a huge brewery town with tours I believe of its brewery that cranks out beer sold under a bewildering number of different names throughout Europe and the world.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 11:43 AM
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No brewery in Breda - Interbrew closed it down in 2004.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 11:51 AM
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Your mention of the old Heineken Brewery brings back memories, PalenQ. I spent part of a winter of 1975 living on a barge on a canal not far from the brewery. The tour was free, and I was broke, so it was a no brainer.

One amusing thing was going down to watch the tours let out. I don't think there was a limit on how many times you could have your glass refilled, and we would watch for the cops to roll by and then follow them to watch the fun. The police would block off the street at both ends of the exit. The doors would pop open, and out would come a stream of really looped young backpacker types who had filled their tanks inside. They would have been a real hazard to both the traffic and themselves as they ricocheted off the buildings and lurched from the sidewalks into the street. The cops would stop the ones who seemed unable to make it to the end of the block.

Perhaps that is one reason they tore the brewery down.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 12:38 PM
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Definitely go to Brouwerij 't Ij - great beer, cool place, nice prices.

If you are interested in a guided bike tour, check out Mikes Bikes. They do a countryside tour that is really good.

http://www.mikesbiketoursamsterdam.com/
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 12:42 PM
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"A pils please" is what Dutch ubiquitously ask the bar tender when wanting a beer - pilsener bill like true Heieneken brewed in Holland is - the stuff for export to States they say on the tour is made more for the American lager-loving market and is more a lager.

So the Heineken you get in Holland tastes IMO better than the Heineken you often get in the States. Well at lest it don;t taste like gnats' p... to me or to most Dutch who always seem to drink Heinekens.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 01:04 PM
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Our new king was nicknamed Prins Pils, when he was younger, so he is certainly fond of the stuff.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 01:21 PM
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PalQ because Heineken own most of the pubs and restaurants there is no choice when out and about.
At home many will drink Brand, Gulpener, or Hertog Jan over Heineken any day.

Heineken is foul stuff. Sadly they have bought up a lot of breweries, like Amstel, De Ridder and Brand - though Brand still brew their own beer and are under the brand family management, further reducing the choice.

InBev are no better of course. They own Dommelsch Hetog Jan and Oranjeboom along with Stella, Hoegaarden, Leffe, etc etc - in fact it is easier to list the brands that aren't owned by those two
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 02:51 PM
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I love Gulpener and every time I am at my favorite Amsterdam wagtering hole - the Flying Dutchman, near central station, I ask for a Gulpener in a bottle.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2013, 10:28 PM
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Breukelen isn't on Amstel, the Amstel gets you to Ouderkerk, a wonderful destination. Also by bike: the waterland area to the north of Amsterdam: 20 minutes by bike and you're there.

Yes to Brouwerij Het IJ.

And, rather than "een pils", ask for "een bier" at the bar: you'll get Pils nonetheless. If you want a specialty beer, ask for it by type. (trappist, double, triple, etc).
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Old Apr 24th, 2013, 06:22 AM
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Yes my suggested bike ride,one that I have done dozens of times, goes along the Amstel then inland to Oudekerk and eventually back to the big canal that Breukelen sits on.
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Old Apr 24th, 2013, 07:18 AM
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Ouderkerk is situated on Amstel river. To get to Breukelen from there is a considerable distance. That route you describe is about 60 km. The only thing I wanted to point out is that if you follow the Amstel you won't end up at Breukelen and that cycling to Breukelen and then back to Amsterdam is perhaps a bit much for an afternoon's ride.
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Old Apr 24th, 2013, 07:21 AM
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Breukelen and the area around the Vecht river is lovely, though. Well worth a visit.
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Old Apr 24th, 2013, 07:32 AM
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It's been a while since I've done that trek will have to get out the map and see how I went - ,many many times as part of a bike trip I organized but years ago.

Trains serve Breukelen so it is easy to put your bike on a train and get back to Amsterdam.
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