Photo Essay – Amsterdam Revisited

5 Mar

Revisiting a place has very many benefits – you can see the things missed out on your earlier trips, re-live the earlier holiday, eat more of the local tasty cuisine, check out the non-touristy sites, take this trip at a more leisurely pace and see the changes that have taken place in the intervening time frame. Last year I had a chance to revisit Amsterdam for a day (after 5 long years) and loved my second trip here. (You can read my post on the earlier trip at – Amsterdam – The City of 3Cs). Since I had seen the touristy Amsterdam on the previous trip, I spent my day just aimlessly walking around noticing the things I had missed out on my last trip and revisiting some of its famous sites. Though I still have a left to explore on my next trip (I keep figuring out things I missed through other blogs, magazines etc), I am sharing my experience of this trip via a photo essay below –

Just like my last trip I reached Amsterdam this time too via a train and the Amsterdam Centraal Station was my introduction to the city. But on my previous trip it was covered in scaffolding and protective covers due to ongoing renovation and we had not been able to see it. But the restoration work was now complete and I had a fabulous time walking around this gorgeous building.

The gorgeous Amsterdam Centraal

The gorgeous Amsterdam Centraal

Amsterdam Centraal

Amsterdam Centraal

The moment you step out of Amsterdam Centraal you see the old part of Amsterdam with its signature narrow long tilting houses, gables and hooks. It’s a timeless picture postcard and doesn’t change at all. These houses are narrow for a reason. In earlier days when taxes were charged;  houses were valued by width, not depth or height. So people built narrow buildings throughout the city.

The long narrow lean tilting houses of Amsterdam

The long narrow lean tilting houses of Amsterdam

There is also a scientific reason for these tilting buildings and the hooks. This is a city built on canals and hence susceptible to flooding. Thus upper floors were the safest places to store items. But the stair cases in these narrow houses are also extremely narrow and furniture cannot turn in these narrow spaces. So the Dutch found another way to move their large items. They hoisted them up outside the house via the large arm and hook at the top of the house. Items could just be tied to this hook and pulled up to the desired floor. The houses also lean a little forward so that the items could easily be taken in through the windows and not collide with the outer facade.

Houses with long arms and hooks

Houses with long arms and hooks

All building are built on canals and you can see boats parked all along the cars like cars along the lanes in our cities.

Houses on canals

Houses on canals

Amsterdam can be explored via boats, cycles, trams and walking. On my previous trip we had walked all around but since I was short on time on this trip, I found a cheats trick – trams. There is a fabulous tram connection all over this city and for Euro 7.5 you can buy a 24 hour unlimited travel pass. Then just pick up a tram map and keep hopping on and off. 🙂

Amsterdam Trams

Amsterdam Trams

Amsterdam Tram Stations and Trams

Amsterdam Tram Stations and Trams

I also saw the old floating flower market where you can mix and match and buy all kinds of tulips and other flowers. You can read my detailed post the same at – A Unique Souvenir from Amsterdam – Tulip Bulbs. 

The Floating Flower Market of Amsterdam

The Floating Flower Market of Amsterdam

Mix and Match Tulips

Mix and Match Tulips

I am extremely fond of deserts and in a small roadside cafe came across this traditional Dutch treat called – Poffertjes.  It is like a small bite sized fluffy pancake made of yeast and buckwheat flour. Served with strawberries, cream and chocolate sauce it was the perfect accompaniment for my afternoon coffee. Since Indonesia was a Dutch colony, each cuisine has influenced a lot of the other and Poffertjes is thought to have influenced the Indonesian kue cubit.

Poffertjes

Poffertjes

Trying to walk off all the Poffertjes, I landed at the Rembrandtplein or the Rembrandt Square. This  is a major square in central Amsterdam and named after the famous painter Rembrandt van Rijn who owned a house nearby. The square has a beautiful statue of Rembrandt and is surrounded by numerous clubs, restaurants and pubs. It’s a definite stop on the nightlife tour of the city.

Rembrandtplein or the Rembrandt Square in Amsterdam

Rembrandtplein or the Rembrandt Square in Amsterdam

If you have sometime and its sunny then do rent a solar boat and go for a self rowing canal tour. It’s a fabulous way of experiencing and seeing this city. I couldn’t do this as I didn’t know about these solar self rowed boats and by the time I tried booking one it was all full.

Self Rowing Solar Boats, Amsterdam

Self Rowing Solar Boats, Amsterdam

And finally I ended the day by the side of a canal watching the sunset on these old buildings and timeless canals. A perfect way to end a perfect day.

Watching the sunset on the city and its canals

Watching the sunset on the city and its canals

Have you had a chance to revisit any places? Do share your experiences of the same.

Advertisements

17 Responses to “Photo Essay – Amsterdam Revisited”

  1. corneliaweberphotography March 6, 2016 at 07:04 #

    Amsterdam is such a lovely city. I should revisit it, it’s been over thirty years ago I went there.

    Like

  2. mvschulze March 6, 2016 at 08:29 #

    Wonderful overview. Liked your first visit entry as well. M 🙂

    Like

  3. SandeepaChetan March 6, 2016 at 13:42 #

    Thank you for sharing your experience. We can relate with many things that you’ve shared. We revisited Rio before we wind up our South America trip. As we landed there the first feeling was like everything looks familiar, as if we are returning our home. There was no need of orientation. We knew every corner of the city. So we decided to imitate life of Carioca for four days. Carioca is a term used for locals living in Rio. Though our visit was just after four months we discovered many positive changes in the city. Rio was gearing up for 2016 Olympics. Traffic situation was improved, road construction or repairing work was in full swing and most of them were at finishing stages. BRT project was complete and fully operational. Most of the olympics stadiums were ready. It was a summer time and the whole atmosphere was changed. All the deserted beaches now were looking crowded. It was like visiting the city for the first time.

    Like

    • getsetandgo April 4, 2016 at 18:27 #

      Dear SandeepaChetan. Thanks for visiting my blog. I have been following your travels since a while now and love your posts… I totally agree with you on your take on revisiting a city and couldn’t have expressed it better myself 🙂 Though I haven’t been to South America yet I hope to make it there soon…

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Misskissvolunteers March 6, 2016 at 22:59 #

    I adore Amsterdam! Such a fun city! Thanks for sharing!!! 🙂

    Like

  5. Ami Bhat March 7, 2016 at 15:58 #

    Amsterdam is my favorite city…had a very short visit there and I am wanting to go back….Sigh! Nicely captured through your blog

    Like

    • getsetandgo April 4, 2016 at 18:29 #

      Thanks for visiting my blog and the kind words… I loved Amsterdam too and looking forward to visiting again 🙂

      Like

  6. Jenny Patlan March 8, 2016 at 20:31 #

    I want to go to Amsterdam!

    Like

  7. 2travellingsisters March 8, 2016 at 22:32 #

    We had visited Amsterdam few years back and would love to revisit again, as you said in a non-touristy, relaxed way exploring all the hidden gems…:)

    Like

  8. Chaitali Patel March 19, 2016 at 22:29 #

    Loved this post! You showed me and told me so much about the city in such an interesting concise manner! 🙂

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: