WARNING: This blog post may contain stereotypical images of Holland and the Dutch.
After a few days in Amsterdam I can safely report that the place is crazy. Totally crazy. I'd like to write this post avoiding any stereotypical images, but I think that may be impossible. So I thought I'd get them all out of the way early on….
The first thing you notice on arrival in Amsterdam are the bikes! Bloody bikes everywhere! Every space in the city has a bike attached to it. I'm sure that if you stood still long enough someone would prop a bike up against you. So not only do you have to contend with cars, buses and trams, all driving on the wrong side of the road, you have bikes whizzing everywhere. It is quite a challenge.
Marijuana. You can't write a blog post about Amsterdam without mentioning weed. Who had the idea that it would be sensible to make it legal to enter an establishment and smoke weed? On top of that they call them 'coffee shops' just to add to the ridiculous idea. And then just for people that don't actually smoke you can buy a 'space cake' and join in the crazy behaviour. Furthermore, it has become a tourist attraction.
Talking of tourist attractions, what city in the world would you see prostitues selling themselves in shop windows as families walk past pointing? It is a very strange situation.
Amsterdam does, of course, have some pretty typical tourist attractions: museums, historical buildings and canals. It wouldn't be right to visit Amsterdam without visiting the Van Gogh Museum and getting a picture of the famous 'Sunflowers' (also please note you can buy all sorts of crap under the guise of sunflowers). It was also surprising to see the man himself in the foyer painting…..
Amsterdam is a
strange weird fantastic city and well worth a visit.