June 18, 2013

Way back when, when I was a mere 22 I spent an amazing pre-birthday weekend in Amsterdam.

Sex and drugs obv.

But really, had a lovely time sightseeing and staying with my lovely friend Francesca who is studying there. Amsterdam is a city I could really see myself living in –and who knew it was so close to the UK? I think the flight may even have been shorter than when I used to fly to uni in Edinburgh.


chocolate penises. I found it very amusing that these were casually being sold at a market –note the ‘super size’ sign.
Chocolate penises
I would have brought one back –but really who would this be a suitable souvenir for? “Here mum I got you a chocolate penis”….awk

As well as the cholate penii, I also enjoyed the chocolatey goodness of the most amazing waffle I have ever had!

This face shows pure joy! (sorry about the ugo)
Om nom nom -waffle

Stumbled across a giant pillow fight.

Aggressively throwing feathers…
Surprise pillow fight

…for a pretty feather photo :)
pillow fight feathers

Kept finding feathers all over the place after that…

So, Amsterdam =sex and drugs

This is the red light district =beautiful!
more canals Amsterdam

There were literally girls on windows on this street and all around this area of town. I knew this was going to be a thing but I had no idea what it would actually be like. There is genuinely every type of girl just chilling in their windows any time of day (although I think the fitties are saved for when it’s busiest/they can afford to pay the higher window rental fees). It was the weirdest seeing a family with kids wandering through this neighbourhood.

We went on part of a tour of Amsterdam and did actually hear about this part of town (before we abandoned the tour in search of a space cake, which I think I was miss-sold as it was surprisingly delicious and had absolutely no effect).

Apparently the girls hate to be thought of as being in any way victimised; they have chosen to do this and are often making a lot of money in a way that they enjoy. Girls come from all over the world to work in the windows here and a really small proportion of them are actually dutch. All very interesting, and made me feel a lot less guilty about hanging out in the red light district hoping to see a guy actually go in (I did see this, someone on a stag do, in the middle of the day :) ).

We spent our evenings drinking in the tiniest cutest bars.  Amsterdam seems like somewhere where you could go to a different bar each night and never run out. Only issue is with all the canals everywhere looks the same so I mostly had absolutely no idea where I was. At least they’re pretty :)

forever friends

We spent our last morning cycling around Vondelpark which was so beautiful. Perfect place for a picnic and a bike ride.
Random Park amsterdamVondelpark Amsterdam

Getting to and from the bike rental shop was absolutely terrifying though. Even the other bikers scare me as they casually cut the tourists up. And cycling on the wrong side of the road….what do you possibly do at junctions?  I had to get off and cross the road on foot, could not work that one out (I dread ever having to drive a car in a foreign country).

Obligatory I Amsterdam sign photos:

A local
cycling Amsterdam sign

I always chill like this…
D Amsterdam sign

So you know blue bols (aka the blue stuff that goes in a blue lagoon cocktail)? That stuff is made here, along with every other flavour you could possibly think of. And there is a tour you can do that includes cocktails and shots! A perfect time was spent at the House of Bols.

House of bols smells
High quality analysis of delicious flavour 783 (or thereabouts)House of bols shots
Tasty tasty shots

I even made the discovery of natural yoghurt bols. I know it sounds horrendous but a shot has never gone down so well. It tastes like petit filous. I had to buy a bottle of it in the airport on the way home because I needed that goodness in my life.

I did of course also go to the Anne Frank museum. It was so strange being there and thinking that it was literally where they had lived for all that time. It felt a lot more human when I saw the posters Anne had on the walls and the actual diary that she first wrote in….beforehand it had been somewhat of an abstract concept. It was very interesting  (also surprising large…I’d been thinking more along the lines of a Harry Potter style cupboard tbh) and definitely worth going to if you’re in Amsterdam. And fyi the cue was huge but really didn’t take that long to go through –I think we waited 15mins max.

Better lighten the mood now….

Giant penis
giant penis photo

It’s a hard life…
It's a hard life

Amsterdam you are a great city, I will definitely be back :D.



p.s. Interesting fact –if you think you see a parrot, you’re probably right. The parrot’s in the zoo don’t live in cages and are free to roam around the city.