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  1. #21
    Almighty Cruiser Copper10-8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy7
    hehehehe see you shouldnt have inhaled LOLOLOL ! And why did you have a cop escort ????
    Kinda hard not to inhale when you're in there for 20 minutes. I was on a ridealong with the Amsterdam Police It's my home city and lived there for 18 yrs
    "Nemo Hispanic Inquisition expectat!"

    .

  2. #22
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    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by Copper10-8
    Kinda hard not to inhale when you're in there for 20 minutes. I was on a ridealong with the Amsterdam Police It's my home city and lived there for 18 yrs
    Well ya learn something new everyday

  3. #23
    Super Cruiser localady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Copper10-8

    A word for the wise; go to the Red Light District if you'd like. It's an experience. Daytime is fine but it can get "uncomfortable" at night (stay in a group) and never take a picture of the girls behind the windows because they or their "supervisors" will chase you down and demand your film!

    Take care and be safe!

    JP
    A wise tip, after all those gals have Mom's and Dad's too!!


    I also recommend a visit to an area like the Joordan....just to walk through the streets and soak up the atmosphere....It is more of a neighborhood and less of a tourist area. There are lovely restaurants and neighborhood bars, and the side streets are filled with residents living daily life.
    Loca Lady
    HAL-152 days; Celebrity-27 days; RCCL-28 days; Disney-7 days Total- 214 days
    Coming up- 11/07 Veendam, 2/08 Oosterdam Yum Yum Man cruise, 9/08 Eurodam NE/Canada

  4. #24
    Casual Cruiser GramaFran's Avatar
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    Thank you all for your advise and great ideas. We will be in Amsterdam for 3 days before our cruise on Sept 2, 2006. Booked at the Hotel Grand K
    right on Dam Square so we will be able to see it all.
    My DH keeps saying Rembrandt is all he wants to see. I just want to see it all.
    question: I can not walk very well mainly distance, is there a hop on hop off type of bus so we can ride between the sights/museums?

    Thanks again for all the info.
    Francine
    Francine

  5. #25
    Super Cruiser localady's Avatar
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    GramaFran-
    There sure is a hop-on/hop-off "bus", it's called a Canalbus and is a wonderful way to see the canals of Amsterdam while you get from one venue to another. At times it can require patience, as the Canal buses can fill quickly, but it is an integral part of Amsterdam!!
    Enjoy Amsterdam and remember, it's okay to inhale there! !
    Loca Lady
    HAL-152 days; Celebrity-27 days; RCCL-28 days; Disney-7 days Total- 214 days
    Coming up- 11/07 Veendam, 2/08 Oosterdam Yum Yum Man cruise, 9/08 Eurodam NE/Canada

  6. #26
    Super Cruiser Trixsea's Avatar
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    Does anyone have any idea how far it is from the ship terminal to downtown?? Is it walkable??
    Terry

  7. #27
    Cruising Machine stowaway2k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trixsea
    Does anyone have any idea how far it is from the ship terminal to downtown?? Is it walkable??
    Hi

    Most cruise ships berth here
    http://www.ptamsterdam.nl/homepage/e_index.html

    It's about a 15 min. walk to Central Station, where trams are available to go most anywhere.
    From Central Station, it's about another 5-10 walk to Dam Square, the center of the main historic district

    Here's a good map
    click on the map to enlarge it, however your computer does it.
    http://www.transsib.ru/Eurasia/Map/amsterdam-center.jpg
    You'll see the PTA, the Passenger Terminal Amsterdam, on the center right of the enlarged map.
    To the left of the PTA, you'll see Central Station. Going straight down from Central Station is the Damrak, the main street. You'll walk down that to the Dam, where you'll find yourself in the center.

    Have fun!
    kyle
    click here to see my photos!

  8. #28
    Super Cruiser Trixsea's Avatar
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    Thanks so much for the quick response. I really did not want to take a structured tour and this sounds like I will be able to explore on my own!
    Terry

  9. #29
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    Holland Country side

    Quote Originally Posted by glory4usa1 View Post
    visit the red light district... check out the coffee shops... and buy some.... you know what only because you can... legaly...lol
    Indeed have fun! After you have explored Amsterdam you might want to visit the beautiful country side of The Netherlands. For inspiration check: Holland= All-included private Netherlands tours. Your Holland travel agent!

    If you like more information on The Netherlands, follow my new blog Netherlands Travel Expert

  10. #30
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    Time is a luxury, and it's one many are often short of when they travel. As an experienced traveler, I find Amsterdam, as one of Europe's smallest capitals, lends itself well to whistle-stop tours thanks to its compact city center and excellent public transit (or rent-a-bikes!). If I had just 48 hours to see it all (and did at the beginning of our last European River Cruise), this is how I'd pack the most of Amsterdam into two days: a personalized tour for the time-constrained, from the wonders of the 17th-century Low Countries to modern Dutch life. The Amsterdam cruise terminal is busy in season, hosting roughly 900 ships (more than 100 ocean-going vessels and almost 800 river ships) and more than 250,000 passengers from spring through fall. The terminal, near the start of the new Eastern Docklands development, is a 10-minute walk or a five-minute ride from Central Station, where all of the city's bus, trolley and boat lines can be boarded. The multitude of river cruise vessels dock behind the Central Station on the River IJ, along a long street called de Ruyterkade

    Need some pointers on accommodations? Find the low-down on everywhere from backpacker hostels to five-star luxury hotels under Amsterdam Hotels & Hostels. A nice hotel recommendation either the Banks Mansion or the Hilton Amsterdam.

    Amsterdam is small enough that much of the city can be covered on foot, that is why we always plan walking tours and visit the shoe store prior to the cruises for comfortable shoes allowing us to savor sights such as the charming no-two-alike gables atop the houses, houseboats bedecked with potted greenery and masses of blooms in the colorful, floating flower market. Shops offering antiques or avant-garde art beckon everywhere. Outdoor markets, selling everything from postage stamps and parakeets to "junk-tiques," are another intriguing facet of the city. On Foot: For visitors who plan to explore on their own, almost everything can be done on foot -- and when you tire, trams cover the main areas of the old city, and buses go almost everywhere, including the Docklands area. (The tourist office, opposite Central Station, is a convenient place to get maps and information and purchase tickets.).

    The city's central point is the huge Dam Square, just a five-minute walk from Central Station via Damrak, a busy tourist street. The canals form five circles around Dam Square, and several other squares will help you get your bearings as you study the city map. Lively Leidseplein and Rembrantsplein are lined with sidewalk cafes that are ideal places to rest and watch the passing scene.

    Major museums and the classic Concertgebouw concert hall are near the Museumplein, just beyond the canals. Waterlooplein is home to the Jewish Museum, the Muziektheater, the city's handsome concert hall, and Amsterdam's biggest flea market; the Hermitage museum and Rembrandt's House are also nearby. The Jordaan, a bohemian neighborhood with unusual shops and galleries, can be found by looking for the Westerkerk Church and the Anne Frank House.The adventurous can join the Dutch on their bicycles; rentals are available at MacBike at Central Station for, about 9.50 euros

    Tip: A 48-hour I amsterdam Card is the ideal compliment to my 48-hour tour: it offers free city-wide public transport, free entrance to most of the recommended attractions, and a 25% discount at a selection of central restaurants. A map is also handy for Amsterdam's often serpentine street plan: the I amsterdam City Map sold for € 2.50 at the VVV (Tourist Information Center), across from Central Station, is adequate.


    We usually arrive early morning, process thru and then the first 24 hours are devoted to Amsterdam's Central Canal Belt, which arcs in a semi-circle around the Central Station. Start at the station and head south to the Damrak; this most conspicuously touristic street in Amsterdam is loaded with souvenir shops whose wares run from tasteful to hilariously kitsch. At the end is Dam Square, with the Koninklijk Palais (Royal Palace) to the west side and the National Monument to the east. Step into the palace and admire the 17 illustrious rooms of Empire-period decorative arts.
    I love to take a peek inside the Gothic Nieuwe Kerk (New Church) and check out the temporary exhibition if it appeals. Then head west on the Radhuisstraat to the Westermarkt, site of both the Homomonument – a sensitive memorial to all those persecuted for their sexuality – and the Westerkerk, whose 85m church tower, the tallest in Amsterdam, rewards climbers with a lovely panorama. To the north, the Anne Frank Huis needs no introduction; bypass the queue with pre-purchased online tickets. (Note that the Anne Frank Huis is not included in the I amsterdam Card!) Visitors are unanimously moved by their experience at the Anne Frank Huis, and you will undoubtedly be too. Even thou we grow tired my wife says -Don't stop now – retrace your steps to Spuistraat and head southeast: with only 48 hours, have lunch on the move from De Vleminckx Sausmeesters, Amsterdam's favorite friet (French fries), at Voetboogstraat 31.
    Late afternoon we were able to witness the most picturesque enclave in all of Amsterdam farther north on Voetboogsteeg: the Begijnhof, whose private residences nestle around an inner court. The handsome wooden house at number 34 is one of only two that survive below the river IJ. We followed this with a snack and then the Oudezijds Voorburgwal up north to Oudekerkplein (Old Church Square), seat of the monumental Oude Kerk, consecrated in 1306. At the north side of the square is the Museum het Rembrandthuis, where the artist lived in his heyday; here Rembrandt's masterpieces are superimposed on a superbly restored interior. Another pause for refreshment .
    By now we were in Amsterdam's fabled red-light district, De Wallen. Adults with a sincere curiosity about the sex trade in the Netherlands can take a non-sensationalistic tour of De Wallen with a former sex worker. We skipped out! And instead climbed up to the splendid attic church concealed in an ordinary house at Ons' Lieve Heer op Solder ("Our Lord in the Attic"), where persecuted Catholics worshipped in the 17th and 18th centuries in was an interesting twist on events. Late we rounded off your first 24 hours in Amsterdam with a typically Dutch supper: the Pannenkoekenhuis Upstairs at Grimburgwal 2, one of Amsterdam's best pancake restaurants, where savory pancakes are doled out in a tiny but convivial space. Think pancakes are just for breakfast? Sample the irresistible fondue at Café Bern (Nieuwmarkt 9), which serves Swiss specialties in a typically Dutch bruin café (great since our River Cruise was to end in Basel, Switzerland!) We headed back to our superb hotel and got some much needed rest.


    Day 2 Arose early in Amsterdam (headed for thejacuzzi at the hotel) then it was out in the Old South, whose celebrated Museum Quarter houses the pride of Dutch patrimony in its three institutions, and where the Vondelpark with its innumerable attractions sprawls. We started (due to the fact that it is so very popular) with the Rijksmuseum, another attraction included in the I amsterdam Card, whose permanent collection boasts the best of Dutch and Flemish masters. The museum is under renovation until 2013, but visitors can still drop in to see "De Meesterwerken", a temporary exhibition of the Rijksmuseum's most beloved masterpieces. This naturally includes Rembrandt's De Nachtwacht, the Leiden-born artist's 1650 ensemble portrait of city militiamen, as well as selected works by Jan Vermeer.
    The Rijksmuseum collection reaches into the 19th century, but the most seminal Dutch painter of the century has his own institution in the Museum Quarter: the Van Gogh Museum. Gerrit Rietveld's phenomenal architecture sets the scene for this entirely unique collection of some 200 canvases and hundreds more sketches by the artist, in addition to his Impressionist friends and Post-Impressionist disciples. Catapult into the 20th century with a quick meal at the Cobra Café. If the artworks from the Brussels-born Corneille or the Amsterdammer Karel Appel (the "Br" and "A" in CoBrA, respectively) tickle your fancy, pencil in a trip to the brilliant Cobra Museum in nearby Amstelveen for next time; for now, it's off to another bastion of modern art, the Stedelijk Museum.The Stedelijk Museum is Amsterdam's answer to MoMA, the Musée d'Orsay and other worldwide temples of modern art. Its Museumplein location has been temporarily reopened to the public (until January 9, 2011) in the midst of renovation and expansion for two contemporary art exhibits – an excellent window of opportunity for art lovers! Then we headed northward and let culture secede to consumerism on P.C. Hoofdstraat, Amsterdam's own Champs-Élysées. Upscale chains line the street; rub elbows with their well-heeled clientele as you browse Hermes, Louis Vuitton, and other exclusive retailers. Or just skip on over to the Vondelpark, the verdant heart of Amsterdam, for a late afternoon stroll or one of the abundant indoor and outdoor activities in the park. We decided to celebrate the close of your 48 hours in Amsterdam with one last typically Dutch experience: eat rijsttafel at Sama Sebo, one of the top Indonesian restaurants in the city. Rijsttafel, which literally means "rice table", is like tapas on overdrive: a feast of small Indonesian dishes, plus rice, that tests even the heartiest appetites. Not traditionally Indonesian, rijsttafel is a Dutch colonial invention that allowed colonists to sample dishes from all over the islands. So eet smakelijk ("bon appétit!"), and have a toast to your next 48 hours – or more – in Amsterdam!


    Shore excursions my best advice is quite concise:

    For the first-timer, a canal boat cruise in a glass domed vessel is a great way to get an overview of the city. There are some 60 miles of canals -- more than you'd find in Venice! The standard tour takes you past landmarks like the Anne Frank House, countless houseboats and Amsterdam's famous gabled homes, built by merchants during the city's golden age in the 17th century.

    For the art aficionado, don't miss the chance to take a guided tour of the Van Gogh museum, which features a massive collection from the Dutch master (and from his contemporaries). Just as fascinating as the art is the artist himself, whose tumultuous life story culminated with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

    Get outside the city to Zaanse Schans, an open-air "recreation" museum that showcases 17th century Dutch life. The wooden shoes, cheese and windmills are all there. A visit to the nearby city of Edam -- well-known for its red-wax covered cheeses, flower markets and canals -- is almost always included in the excursion.

    Let me know if I can answer any further or future questions!
    timwilloughby likes this.

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