In the past, all I’ve ever heard about Amsterdam was the Red Light District. Therefore, it was not a top (or bottom) destination for me to visit. But over the past few months, I’d seen sooo many beautiful photos of Amsterdam on Instagram until I decided I really should pay a visit.
If you’re a regular follower/reader here or follow me on Instagram, you know I spent the past two weeks in Europe. I mentioned earlier here that I’ve visited Italy every year for the past four years and that this year would be year five. Because I was so anxious to visit Amsterdam, we decided to scratch Rome off the list and fly into Amsterdam instead. Even though it was only going to be a twenty-four hour visit, I figured that would be long enough for me to get a taste of Amsterdam. And if I liked it, I could always come back another time for a longer visit.
To say I fell in love with this wonderful city would be an under statement! I loved everything from the architecture to the history, from the food to the entertainment. I knew that one bicycles were a big deal here (one of the biggest forms of transportation) and had seen photos of them. But to actually see them in person was amazing! They were everywhere. They even have bicycle garages…the same that we have here in the States for our vehicles!
We stayed in what I thought was the ‘happening-est’ hotel, The Double Tree by Hilton Centraal Station that houses the hot and always crowded SkyLounge.
Like I said, we only had twenty-four hours to get in as much as possible. And even though it rained the majority of our stay, that didn’t stop us from getting out and around. Here’s what we did and ate and where we stayed. Jacket, Laceup Stripe Top, Black Jeans (old, Forever21) | Sneakers (old, Charlotte Russe)
Where We Ate:
Eastwood Beer & Grill: We arrived in Amsterdam very early in the morning and arrived to our hotel by 7:30 am. Once we were checked in, we decided to eat the hotel’s breakfast. There ‘Continental’ breakfast is NOTHING like the American Continental breakfast. It’s been about four years since I’ve had sweet waffle and that was just about all I ate.
The Pancake Bakery: George has been to Amsterdam several times for work (in Germany) and has raved about this place. Most of you don’t know, but he is a serious foodie. He decided he didn’t get full off of the early morning breakfast because he wanted to take me here. Lucky for us, when we arrived, we got a table almost immediately. When they brought our drinks, the line was out the door and around the corner! FYI…The list of choices to choose from are endless, so that’s a huge plus. The special ones are already prepped so don’t ask to omit something from the mix. Also, these are technically crepes, not pancakes.
Dragon City Chinese: I can never get away from Chinese food and this is what we had for lunch. I love good shrimp fried rice and wonton soup and this place didn’t disappoint. When we arrived, it was raining fairly lightly. But the time we left, it was pouring! But we moved on to the next stop and enjoyed the rain in the process.
Sea Palace: (Yes, Chinese twice in one day!!!) When we first walked in, I thought I’d walked into a Chinese casino. It was just that grand. When we ordered, I thought the place was over-rated. But when the food came, I kinda changed my mind. The food was very tasty but very pricey!
Somewhere along the way, I had a vanilla and chocolate covered waffled. And Oh My God!!! It was absolutely amazing! I just may research this and open a shop selling these delish items here in the US!!!
Where We Stayed:
DoubleTree by Hilton Centraal Station: The best of everything at your fingertips! Set in the heart of the historic district, everything is in walking district: Food, tourist attractions, shopping, canals, everything! Our room had (as all their rooms do) floor-to-ceiling windows that faced the canal (IJ River) and was equipped with the Apple imac PC/TV. The first floor lounge area was awesome. The walls were filled with books which almost made it looked like a coffee shop and library rolled into one. Speaking of coffee shop, Starbucks, as well as the bar, is in the lounge. What makes this area super cool is the DJ they have there…daily! Everything about this hotel was just on point. They thought of everything when they designed this hotel.
What We Did:
The Anne Frank House: Get your tickets online prior to showing up or you will more than likely be out of luck. The line was incredible. I really felt bad for those waiting to get in. Whether you buy your tickets in advance or wait for hours in line, it is definitely worth it. It seems everyone has read this book but me. As soon as I get back to the States, I will purchase the book.
The Canal Tour: I never knew Amsterdam had as many canals as it does. This is one tour you need to take. Even if you don’t listen to the recordings (which you should) just seeing the canals and architectual beauty is worth it!
The Ice Bar: I didn’t think I would enjoy this as much as I did. Everything from the bar to the beer and shot glasses are made from ice. I had a couple of shots of Nutella vodka that was sooo amazing!
The Nines: This is an area that consists of nine picturesque narrow streets with boutiques, art galleries, jewellers, gift shops, bars, cafes, and restaurants. I can totally imagine it being all decked out for the Holidays!
The SkyLounge: This gorgeous place was located on the rooftop of the hotel we stayed in. If you get there any later than around 8 pm, you run the risk of NOT getting in! The atmosphere is very fun and party-like. We only went for drinks and the amazing view of the city. Cheers!
Twenty-four hours was enough time for me to realize I definitely need to return and spend more time getting to know this beautiful, historic, and picturesque city. If you’ve ever visited Amsterdam, I would love to hear about your experience as well as places I should visit the next time that are off the beaten path. Thank you so much for reading. And as always, have a beautiful day.
Make sure you sign up for my newsletter to enter to win July’s Monthly Giveaway: $30 Target Gift Card It’s easy! Just click on the image above to subscribe to my newsletter (just enter your name and email address) and you will automatically be entered into the June Giveaway! Giveaway ends July 31, 2017 and the winner will be announced on August 1, 2017 on my Facebook page. It’s that simple!
June Giveaway: $30 Nordstrom Gift Card xxx GIVEAWAY CLOSED xxx
May Giveawy: $30 Absolute Beauty Gift Package xxx GIVEAWAY CLOSED xxx
April Giveawy: 8-Piece Melamine Summer Plate Set xxx GIVEAWAY CLOSED xxx
March Giveaway: $50 Nordstrom Gift Card xxx GIVEAWAY CLOSED xxx
February Giveaway: NYX Beauty Pack xxx GIVEAWAY CLOSED xxx
January Giveaway: $25 Gift Card (3 Winners) xxx GIVEAWAY CLOSED xxx