Today I’ll be sharing some pictures and experiences from the second part of our late honeymoon/one year anniversary trip: the Netherlands.
Before getting to the good stuff, though, I just have to share a couple of pictures from our flight to Europe:
We spent the majority of our time in the Netherlands in Amsterdam, which was an incredibly beautiful city with a really laid-back, cool vibe.
We took a canal cruise in a glass top boat, which was an awesome way to see a lot of the city. I think I took at least 30-40 pictures during that cruise, but these are a few of my favorites:
One of the things I really wanted to do while in Amsterdam was visit the Anne Frank House. Thankfully, we had time to squeeze that in during our free time! It was just as powerful as I imagined it would be … I got really emotional while we were there. We weren’t allowed to take pictures inside, but we snapped a couple as we waited in line to enter:
We also spent an afternoon in Volendam, first touring a cheese/clog making shop and then stopping for lunch. We were able to sample a bunch of the cheeses at the shop, and Eric and I picked up a couple of our favorites to bring home (gouda with cumin and smoked gouda with black pepper).
As in New York, I took pictures of a couple of our more memorable meals.
In addition to pictures of our food, I also took some pictures of our hotel. We stayed at the Park Plaza Vondelpark in Amsterdam, which was kind of small and cozy, but overall a nice place to stay. We were in what the tour guide referred to as the “posh” part of the city, so it was a very quiet, safe neighborhood. We even walked through the nearby park on our way back to the hotel one night after dark and it was completely fine … There were actually a ton of people out bicycling and jogging through the park.
Eric and I went to the Red Light District one night, but it was honestly a little underwhelming. I think we just went too late because most of the shops were closed (which was crazy since it was only 9:30 p.m. when we got there), but we were at least still able to do a little window shopping. We did grab some beer at a bar and enjoyed people watching, though. We didn’t take any pictures while we were there because we didn’t want to be too obviously touristy (though I’m sure everyone could still tell we weren’t locals) and because we knew that pictures are generally frowned upon in that area.
I will say, though, that I’m really glad we went, even if we didn’t get to go in any of the sex shops. (They had a condom shop that looked really awesome, and I was really bummed we couldn’t get anything there. Oh, and that link? Not safe for work.) We briefly considered going to a strip club, but decided against it because we weren’t sure how much it would cost and didn’t want to waste a bunch of our cash so early into our trip. If our stop in Amsterdam had been at the end of our trip, we definitely would have gone!
I was really proud of us for figuring out the bus system as well. We took the bus down to the Red Light District and then back to our hotel when we’d finished hanging out. (We only spent about an hour and a half in the area.) We both felt like Amsterdam had a pretty confusing layout, so it was actually just impressive that we found anything at all (whether on foot or via public transportation)!
And finally, I have to share a picture Eric and I took on our first night in Amsterdam. We took this in our hotel room right before we went downstairs for a meet and greet dinner with our tour guide and the rest of our group because it was officially our one year wedding anniversary.
So here’s what one year of marriage looks like:
We’ve already discussed going back to Amsterdam in the future. Our tour gave us a taste of 3 areas in Europe (which was really nice!), but we could have easily spent at least a week in Amsterdam. We were able to check off my top 3 things to do there, though (a canal cruise, the Anne Frank House, and the Red Light District), which was obviously awesome. And hey, maybe next time we’ll head to the Red Light District a little earlier in the day and go to a strip club. Why not, right?