City Guide: Amsterdam

Tuesday, August 16, 2016


On to my favorite city and the last city of our trip, Amsterdam. Oh how I love this city. It is filled with the most beautiful canals and great food. We took the train from Paris and the ride wasn't too bad, about three and a half hours. We arrived in the afternoon and headed to get settled in. Our Airbnb was right by Vondelpark and was decorated wonderfully! 


Once we got settled in, we headed for lunch at Foodhallen. It was amazing! It is a food hall filled with all different kinds of foods from, sushi, BBQ, gelato, cupcakes, fish, burgers, smoothies, and much more. 

The bar

I got a crumbled chip and bacon hot dog, Anna got a fried fish sandwich, and Sandy got a BBQ sandwich. They were all pretty good, but the BBQ sandwich was by far the best! If you are in the area, it is definitely worth stopping by and grabbing a quick bite. They also have a huge bar if you are looking to drink. After lunch, we headed to a canal tour with Those Dam Boat Guys. Other than the on and off rainy weather, it was a blast! There were only about 10 people on the boat and it was very laid back. We got to bring whatever we wanted, food and drink wise, on board. 


We stopped and got some wine before hand and enjoyed it during the tour. We were in a small boat, so we got to go up a lot of the canals that bigger tour boats wouldn't be able to. While in Amsterdam, you should definitely do a canal tour with these guys! However, I wouldn't recommend this tour with kids because smoking is allowed on board...unless your kids cool with that. After our canal tour, we picked up some groceries and then went back to the Airbnb to relax for a little. For dinner, we went to Edel. It was super close to our house and right on one of the canals. It was too cold to eat outside, although we did try for about 10 minutes and then went inside. The decor was really cool and the place had a lounge kind of feel. We got some wine to start and then had asparagus risotto and seabass. It was good but not the best meal ever. I would say this place is better for just a drink then a sit down meal.

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The next morning, we headed to the Moco Museum near Vondalpark. Moco is Amsterdam's modern contemporary museum, showing work from Andy Warhol and Banksy. We pre-ordered tickets online incase there was a line, but it wasn't crowded at all. You definitely could get your tickets there and be fine! 




It was a really cool museum and was a nice break from all the older art we had seen. It isn't a huge museum and only took us about an hour to go through. If you have time, it is worth a visit! After the museum, we headed to the Albert Cuyp Market. It is Amsterdam's biggest farmers market and we wanted to walk through and try out some traditional food. It was huge! They has so many different vendors and lots of food options. We ended up getting some Poffertjes, which are basically mini pancakes covered in butter and powdered sugar. They were delicious! 



After the market, we headed to get some lunch back near Moco. When I came to Amsterdam last year, I had the best burgers and hot dogs from a little food stand right near the I Amsterdam sign, so we went there. The stand is called Foodcrib and their burgers and hot dogs are some of the best i've ever had. I got the Fatboy burger and Anna got the Chubby dog. We split them both and it was the most amazing thing ever! Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures to drool over. After lunch, we headed to Brouwerij 't IJ to try some authentic Amsterdam beer. 



This brewery is in the only remaining windmill in the city, how cool! We each ordered a flight, which came with 5 of their beers. They have a bunch of outdoor space, so we sat out there until it got too cold and then moved inside. The beer was really good and the atmosphere was fun! Definitely worth a visit!

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The next day, we headed back towards the Moco Museum to grab some breakfast before going to the Van Gogh Museum. When I was in Amsterdam last year, I got the best Nutella waffles from Kiosk Rembrandt Van Gogh right near Foodcrib, so naturally I had to go back. The waffles did not disappoint, they were just as amazing as I remembered! I mean seriously, what's better than Nutella melting over a warm waffle?? Not much. 


Since it was early, it was also prime time to take pictures of the I Amsterdam sign before the crowds of people flooded the area. 


After breakfast, we headed over to the Van Gogh Museum. Luckily, we pre-ordered tickets so we got to skip the long line. I have always been a fan of Van Gogh, so it was cool to learn more about him and see some of his work. They are very strict about taking pictures, so unfortunately I didn't get any. The museum was awesome, however I was disappointed that they didn't have Starry Night. That is my favorite painting of his and I didn't even get to see it. Other than that, I thought the museum was very well put together! Next, we wandered around Jordaan and did some shopping at De Negen Straatjes. There were a bunch of shops that we hopped in, but nothing too amazing. I wouldn't say this is a must visit. 



After shopping, we headed to a cheese tasting at Reypenaer. It was a really good deal, we got to taste unlimited amounts of cheese and each was paired with wine all for 15 euros. We also learned a lot about Gouda and how it is made. 



I would call myself a die hard cheese lover, but this was just too much. I came to the conclusion that I don't like aged gouda at all. It was just too strong in flavor for my liking. I definitely prefer the younger cheeses that are soft and mild in flavor. I would only recommend this for big gouda lovers, because that's all you get to try. After, we needed to walk off some of that cheese so we headed to Begijnhof, which is one of the oldest inner courtyards in Amsterdam. It also use to be home to Beguinages until 1971. 


It was really beautiful and quiet for being inside the city. After, we headed home to eat dinner and relax. That night, Anna and I went to the Red Light District. We went around 9:30 PM, when it was still bright out so it wasn't as sketchy as it could of been. We walked through the entire district so Anna could see what it was all about. After, we headed for some ice cream from Ice Bakery, a store owned by Nutella. It is filled with so many different things incorporating Nutella and other yummy sweets. It was my kind of heaven! Their ice cream was delicious and it is definitely worth a trip!  

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For our last day in Amsterdam, we had booked tickets to the Anne Frank house. I would highly recommend booking your tickets ahead of time so you don't have to wait in a 3 hour line. Tip: they usually go on sale 3 months in advance. I had been before, but I wanted my Mom and sister to experience how great of a museum it is. It is probably my favorite museum that I have been to so far and is absolutely a must while in Amsterdam! The rest of the day we just walked around enjoying the city before we had to leave. We even stopped at a bakery and bought some chocolate covered stroopwafels because we hadn't got to try them yet. 


They were amazing and a must try while in Amsterdam! We even bought some at the airport to bring back because they were so good. Another Dutch staple that we hadn't tried yet were pancakes, so for dinner we went to Mook Pancakes. Boy were they delicious! We ordered three different kinds and got to taste them all. We got the chocolate sensation (chocolate covered), nutty by nature (dates, nuts, and honey), and the blue magic (blueberry). My favorite was the nutty by nature. They also have creative alcoholic beverages. Anna and I both got their mango mimosa, which was so good and refreshing. This place is definitely worth going to! 

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Amsterdam will always hold a place in my heart and I am so happy I could take my mom and sister there to experience it. I can't wait to go back one day and continue to explore one of my favorite cities and I hope you have the chance as well! 

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