I always dreamed of going to The Netherlands. Even though when I was younger I wanted to see Rotterdam, over the past few years visiting Amsterdam has been high on my bucket list. So a few months ago I decided to do it.
I knew that if I wouldn’t do it this summer, I would have to put it off for another year. I am not a fan of cold or rain, so I had to visit during summer time. And even though I already had a few other holidays planned, I decided that making my dream come true is going to be well worth it.
I already talked about how traveling makes me feel alive, but oh boy, you should have seen me a few days before my trip. I was going to explode from all that excitement! On Saturday morning when I was on my way to Bristol Airport I was feeling more energized than I ever did after having a Red Bull or accidentally getting myself on a sugar rush.
I landed at Schiphol Airport early in the morning and took the train to Amsterdam Central Station. The first thing that crossed my mind when I got out of the train station was, ‘WOW! This place is so pretty!’
I booked my accommodation at Hotel Il Fiore (former Hotel Cappuccino) on booking.com as per usual. Once I got to my hotel I was told that the room would only be ready after 2pm. They did mention that when I first booked the room and asked for an early check-in, but I was hoping that it would be ready sooner. It wasn’t. However the lady at the reception was quite lovely and after she put my luggage on hold in the back, she gave me a map of Amsterdam and gave me a few recommendations.
She said I HAD to try an apple pie from Winkel 43, a café that was only 5 minutes from the hotel. It was getting close to 11 o’clock, and given that my last meal was some McDonald’s at 2 in the morning, pie for breakfast sounded like a great idea. Let me tell you, the queue at Winkel was quite ridiculous. I must have waited over 20 minutes to get inside to order an apple pie and an iced coffee. It was kind of worth it, I would say. The apple pie was delicious and quite different compared to the ones we make in my country. And the iced coffee, well I am always down for coffee.
I didn’t really have much of an itinerary or a plan for what I wanted to see in Amsterdam. I’d only booked a couple of things, and for Saturday evening I was only supposed to go to A’Dam Lookout after 6 pm (more on that later). Since I had some free time I decided to go to the Dam Square and start visiting a few attractions there. But first, I had to take a selfie in front of the canals!
‘Amsterdam is gorgeous!’ is something that didn’t take me long to realize and I kept thinking it over and over again. And once I arrived in Dam Square I was like ‘WOOOW’ once again. The architecture left me kind of speechless, but the horse drawn carriages made me go like ‘awww, so cute!’. It was also quite busy, and I was loving it.
I saw everyone sitting down on the steps in front of the Dam Monument. So I sat down too and had a cigarette and took in all of Amsterdam’s City Centre beauty. Then I decided it was actually time to visit some places and learn a few new things. I went to the Old Church first so I could get my Museum Card. If you plan on visiting a lot of Museums, get yourself one of these cards. It’s better to pay €60 once and then get in almost everywhere, rather than paying €10 here, €17 here and €8 there over and over again.
The Old Church was interesting, but it was the Royal Palace that made my jaw drop. The place is just absolutely stunning! It used to be the old Town Hall up until 1808 actually. But when you go inside it’s just gorgeous. The architecture, the statues, and oh don’t even get me started on the rooms! For my silly blonde brain, it’s hard to even comprehend how the elegant places and rooms from hundred of years ago still look so luxurious now.
And of course, when I visit a building of high importance I need to stop and take a mirror selfie. Because my Gerard Cosmetics highlighter is still popping, even 12+ hours later. That’s why it was in my 2016 favorites, haha.
After I finished seeing all of the Royal Palace, I headed towards the Amsterdam Museum. I have to admit, the Palace impressed me so much that Amsterdam Museum didn’t really knock my socks off. Of course it was interesting, but my brain was still fixated on elegance and luxury.
One thing that I really loved was just walking and strolling around the streets of Amsterdam. I just love the architecture! I wish someone would have given me a heads up about the cobble stone streets though. Even my most comfortable flats were killing me by the end of my trip.
Finally, time to head back to my hotel and check in. It was about time for a change of clothes. My room was really nice, a bit bigger than I expected and the bathroom was quite big too. I mean, I never plan on spending a lot of time in my hotel rooms, but I always prefer to pay extra and stay in a place that looks nice. However, I was not happy that I paid about £100 extra to have a room with a so called ‘balcony’.
You see, when I booked my room I thought, you know what? It would be nice to sit on the balcony in the morning and people watch while drinking my coffee. Well, it turned out that the so called balcony was more like an exit to a rooftop. No view whatsoever and no people to watch. Meh, I was still glad to have a place to go out in the morning and have a cigarette instead of having to go downstairs, outside. But I can think of better ways to spend those £100.
After I had a hot shower and touched up my makeup, I decided it was time for dinner. My hotel had an Italian restaurant downstairs, but for some reason they didn’t make pizza. Yeah, what the heck? I know. I found another Italian restaurant nearby, Restaurant and Pizzeria Lucca Due, and I had a delicious pizza. A huge, delicious pizza. Honestly, I thought it’s meant to be for 2 people, it was that big. And the cocktail was huge too, so by the time I finished eating my dinner I was quite tipsy.
Time to head to A’dam Lookout, yay! It’s that tall building that you see behind my sleepy self, and y’all know I love tall buildings, haha. The best thing about it was the observation deck on the 20th level, the view was pretty great. And so was the swing!
I took something that resembles a small ferry from the Central Station and crossed over to the Amsterdam Noord area. When you get to A’Dam Lookout they take a couple pictures of you that you can take home as a memory, and then you head to the 20th level. The view from over there was quite pretty! I had a free cocktail included in my ticket so of course I had to sit down and admire the view.
Okay, finished the cocktail, time to head outside and swing ‘Over the Edge’. The queue was not too big, but it was moving quite slow. I was actually glad because by the time it was my turn to swing the sun was back up! (It was pissing down rain just a few minutes before)
The swing was quite nice. I didn’t get as much adrenaline out of it as I expected, but it was still a unique experience. The downside? They didn’t let me do it alone because there were too many people waiting so I got a little photo bombed. Then, of course, I had to explain to everyone I know that I had no idea who that guy was (I really didn’t) and that he wasn’t even my type (he really wasn’t). But the swing itself is something I recommend you try out if you plan on seeing Amsterdam! And no, in that first picture I was not scared shitless as so many of my friends said, I was tired (up for 24+) and half drunk, haha. I’d like to see what some of them look like without sleep and tipsy.
Now you see, you cannot go to Amsterdam without stopping at a coffee shop at least once. Given that the last time I tried to smoke, sometime last year, I figured that was not keen on it anymore, I decided I’m just going to get a brownie. YUMMM, I always wanted to try a special brownie!
It was a bit of a bummer to pay €5 for something that looked and tasted like a muffin. With weed. I think my momma needs to head to Amsterdam ASAP and show them what a real brownie looks and tastes like, haha. I mean, it’s not about how much I paid, it’s just that I had different expectations. A brownie is a brownie, a muffin is a muffin, for hell’s sake guys.
I was also vlogging! If you’d like to see everything I talked about in a video format, then check out the YouTube video below 😉
Have you ever been to Amsterdam? Would you like to go or do you find it overrated?
Would you like to see more travel blog posts from Amsterdam? Check them out!
Madame Tussauds, Canal Cruise, Red Light District & More! | Amsterdam Day 2
Museum Hopping! | Amsterdam Day 3
Last Day & Final Thoughts | Amsterdam Day 4
Until next time…