Archives for posts with tag: canals

Following from Milan, mister and I took the train to Venice. The only times I had ever seen Venice were from other people’s holiday snaps or in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, however, unlike my favourite fictional character, I wasn’t prepared to see Venice’s underground pipes. I couldn’t believe my eyes, I was in Venice! I looked around everywhere and took in as much as I could. Who knew when I would be back in this amazing sinking city?

Venice is just gorgeous. Just, simply, breathtakingly gorgeous. It’s quaint, quiet and in typical Italian style architecture. It’s quite funny when you actually get there, and if you’re like me you’ll be expecting to see cars, but there are no cars in sight. Even the police patrol with speedboats. No cars, no pollution. Maybe that’s the world’s solution?

There are churches everywhere! I suppose that’s what Europe is famous for. San Marco is quite a spectacular sight to see, however, make sure even if you do go there in summer, you still need to cover up. No bare shoulders and bottoms need to cover the knee down, out of respect of course. The Grand Canal is just amazing. Lots of people everywhere and street vendors selling souvenirs, it’s so clean and feels safe.
Wherever you go in Venice, do not leave without a map. There’s hardly any street signs so you really need a detailed map to find your way back to your hotel!

Where can tourists find the best food? Anywhere really. Because Venice is surrounded by water, seafood is with almost every dish on the menu!

I’m fortunate to be almost completing my travel bucket list, but make sure you do too and put Venice on your list. Friendly locals, great culture and architecture, it’s a spectacular sight for sore eyes!

Having fun along one of the many canals in Venice

Having fun along one of the many canals in Venice

San Marco church is just amazing to look at!

San Marco church is just amazing to look at!

The Grand Canal. Trust me, it's a lot bigger!

The Grand Canal. Trust me, it’s a lot bigger!

 

 

Hello Amsterdam!

Wow, this is city is really a sight for sore eyes. The architecture will leave you in awe and the people will delight you. Mister and I continued on our European journey to Amsterdam and we were thoroughly impressed.

Being the typical history buff that I am we went to the Anne Frank House. I was not able to take photographs in there which I respected but gaining a further understanding of the horror that Jews went through during the holocaust. It made me thankful to be born in a country and era where I know an atrocity like that will never happen.
Amsterdam is filled with many canals and people on bikes. Everyone gets everywhere on a bike, Mister and I should have done it as well, however, we were content with using public transport.

Amsterdam is one of those countries where you don’t feel at all like someone is following you to pick your pockets because you are a tourist. After visiting the Anne Frank House, we conducted our own tour of The House of Bols. It’s a specialised alcohol that Amsterdam stocks and we were fortunate to go on a tour. I highly suggest not doing what Mister and I did and start the tour before you have lunch, on an empty stomach because you get free alcohol at the end. Yes free alcohol on an empty stomach. We stumbled out of there that’s for sure! The House of Bols will show you how their alcohol is made and the flavours it comes in. You can smell the flavours (yes smell them), try your hand at throwing a cocktail shaker and of course the free alcohol at the end.

The following day, Mister and I went to the Heineken Brewery (please don’t think there’s an alcohol related theme here), which was impressive. I don’t drink beer but this brewery was well worth the visit! You can see how beer is made, what ingredients are used and learn how to pour the perfect beer. Yes, throughout the entire tour you get free beer as well. I had one beer and then gave the rest to Mister but this time we had full stomaches!

The best thing about Amsterdam is that it’s one of those cities where you can just walk through street after street, not looking for anything in particular, but just wondering. I was even able to find the world’s biggest wooden shoe and was able to sit in it! There are cheese shops a-plenty! For all you cheese lovers out there you will sample some of the most delicate, obscure and delicious cheese flavours in the world.

If you’re like me and you like wondering and exploring strange cities without a map, then in Amsterdam you will come across the infamous Red-Light district. It is, however, pin pointed on a map but you wouldn’t know it until you were in it. During the day, it’s a footpath (no cars can drive in there) with people going every which way but by night, well, let’s just say it becomes something else. No cameras are allowed as there are scantily clad dressed woman who want to earn a living. If I walked a little in front of Mister and he appeared on his own, I could actually see he was winked at by the women. If you want to know more about Amsterdam’s Red-Light district it really is something you have to see for yourself.

Amsterdam is wonderful and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to find the right words to describe it as it is indescribable. A remarkable, breathtaking city which I certainly plan on returning to in the (hopefully) not to distant future.

The visually stunning The House of Bols and their amazing drinks!

The visually stunning The House of Bols and their amazing drinks!

Me trying to shake and throw a cocktail. I'm clearly not made for the hospitality industry!

Me trying to shake and throw a cocktail. I’m clearly not made for the hospitality industry!

Me trying to pour the perfect beer at the Heineken Brewery. In the end I finally got there!

Me trying to pour the perfect beer at the Heineken Brewery. In the end I finally got there!

The best show in the entire world! It was love at first sight!

The best shoe in the entire world! It was love at first sight!