Saturday, July 22, 2017

Amsterdam Station and the Canals

Have to say that we were quite impressed by the Amsterdam Station. We took the train from Ghent with Andrew to Amsterdam and stepping on the platform with our bags and looking around was like being enclosed in a giant birdcage. AS we were early and could not book into our hotel room, we decided to have a light lunch at the Station. The architecture certainly dwarfs Melbourne's Flinder's Street Station.

We've been in railway stations of Paris and Rome, plus many of the regional French stations such as Tours, Avignon and Marseilles but Amsterdam is by far the most interesting with the design and marble columns.

Arriving at Amsterdam Station
Looking towards the exit
Overlooking the exit.
It could be an opera house rather than a station.
On our first day we took a stroll to acquaint ourselves with the local district. A hotel was only a short walk from the station and in the middle of the tourist hub of the red light district.

We had booked into Hotel France which is located on a walking strip beside one of the canals. Hotel France is beside Molly Malone's Irish Pub where the hotel has a contract to supply breakfast. We've taken calling in during the afternoon to relax with a Guinness or three with our son Andrew after our day excursions in Amsterdam. The canal has a continual flow of tourist boats with the occupants enjoying the sun and a few drinks. Some of the tourist canal boats are quite luxurious.

Where we have breakfast and also an afternoon Guinness after seeing the sights.

Some arty-farty canal pics

Photo opportunities at every canal bridge.

We've walked many of the back streets of the inner Amsterdam district and being the tourist city, it is quite busy. The constant ding ding of bicycle bells is constant and the put-put of 50cc scooters are at least louder to give warning. The bicycle lane network is marvellous and we in Australia could learn more by example. One taxi driver explained that if you hit a cyclist, the driver is by law at fault and will be punished for the offence.
There definitely is a respect and a sense of patience with the sharing of the roads and pathways.

Opposite our hotel
Think I'm adding kgs due to the constant foods and drink in cafes such as this one. Usually we would sit outside however this morning it rained very heavily for 30 mins and then the sunshine appeared. 

Our next post will be on our visit to the Rijks Museum where we spent most of yesterday afternoon.

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