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A City of Many Faces

All of what I'm about to say in this introduction can be summarized in one sentence: Amsterdam is what you make of it. And one thing is sure, whatever your choose to do in Amsterdam, be sure to take plenty of energy and enthusiasm with you. The city offers so many things to do, that it takes far longer than a few days to explore it. Another thing that I believe is true is that this is not a place to visit if you don't have an open mind. Because that's what Amsterdam is about, tolerance and open mindness. As a frequent flyer on KLM I go to Amsterdam at least twice a year and even if my stops are short, I still get to enjoy the city quite often. Every time I tell my friends in US that I'm going to Amsterdam, the answer seems to be invariable the same "Are you planning to get high?" It seems that for most visitors the attraction of the city revolves around its drug and sex activities. But there's a lot more to Amsterdam than these trades. As I said you can make your stay in Amsterdam whatever you want it to be. It can be as fun, as hippy or as sleazy as you want to make it. All is available for you and that's why I like Amsterdam.

Amsterdam is an amazingly beautiful city, which has the advantage of being very compact and therefore easy to explore on foot. The city is a maze of canals with several drawbridges spanning the canals, many dating from the 17th century. The buildings lining these canals only add to the charm, and most of them were also built in the 17th century, during Amsterdam's "Golden Years", when trade was flourishing. My advice for anyone traveling to Amsterdam is to spend as many hours as possible walking around the city, just taking it all in. Amsterdam is one of those great places where you can wander for hours and just lose yourself in the endless maze of small streets. Also, I am simply amazed at the variety of museums to visit in Amsterdam. During my visits to the city, I have only visited a small part of the places that I would love to see, places such as the Van Gogh Museum, the Ann Frank House, the Rembrandt House, and the Rijksmuseum which are not to be missed.

We also enjoyed the wealth of cafes, bars and restaurants all of which contribute to the city's laid-back ambience. Like almost everywhere in Europe it always makes me smile in a slightly envious way that you can sit almost anywhere, day or night, and enjoy an espresso or a cold beer whilst watching the world go by. It's hard to find that here where I live - in the USA - , where you won't find people sitting and drinking coffe for more than 20 minutes.

Amsterdam is a tourist friendly city, very easy for English speakers since almost everyone here speaks a really good English.

In conclusion, it doesn't matter how long you have, you will have something unexplored for your next visit.

Things to see in Amsterdam

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