My experiences with Amsterdam till this point took place only in Schiphol Airport. Amsterdam to me was not really a destination, but an annoying, and necessary stop to get to where I wanted to go. Not a good representation, to say the least. Amsterdam turned out to be much more exciting. I fully recommend that if you are making a stop in this city to switch planes, that you change your plans and stay for atleast one day. Even more will make you even happier!
Its funny how some cities of the world are just so trendy and design focused. Amsterdam is definitely one of them. From the restaurants and shops to the people and their clothes, great design is everywhere. It draws you into every shop and makes you want try every restaurant. Unfortunately, it also makes you a little self conscious in your typical tourist clothes. For us, design is very important and usually makes us fall in love with a city.
My favorite area of the city is the De Negan Straatjes or the Nine Streets. Its a small area of the city that is full of lovely boutique shops, cafes and restaurants. From very trendy (read: expensive) to vintage shops, I was totally in my element. Best shopping I’ve had so far in Europe. Often my only souvenir from a trip will be an item of clothing or jewelry. Amsterdam was no different – a gorgeous scarf and jacket remind me of the city every time I put them on!
We stayed at the Notting Hill Hotel while we were there and really loved it. Its a small boutique hotel with just the right number of rooms and great service. The wall of antique suitcases behind the reception were my favorite. Highly recommended for a weekend break.
Theres a lot more to this city than weed and sex, if you stop being a tourist and act like a local. The relaxed atmosphere and amazing design sense makes it one of my favorite spots in Europe.