Our first trip to Amsterdam together was back in June 2016. We were flying out to New York for my sisters wedding in June, and knowing there are no direct flights out of Nuremberg, we thought we would take a long layover in Amsterdam. It happened to work out perfectly as it was also landing on our 2 year wedding anniversary.
Our 3 days in Amsterdam also happened to be one of our friends last weekends in Amsterdam before she moved back to the states. Which was great because her group of friends wanted to do all of the 'tourist' spots, and as much as we like to act cool & like we're locals... it gave us a reason to see everything with friends.
OUR AIRBNB APARTMENT
We arrived in Amsterdam via Schiphol Airport, and after a quick metro ride we were at our airBnB apartment. The location was perfect - we were in the "Grachtengordel" area of Amsterdam, in the middle of everything. It's always fun to stay at an airbnb... it really makes you feel like a local. Oh how I wish these amazing windows were our apartment!
RENTING BIKES IN AMSTERDAM
After settling in our airbnb, we decided the next step to feeling like a local in Amsterdam is to pick up some bikes! Our airbnb hosts gave us the recommendation of using "Black Bikes Rental Amsterdam" . It becomes pretty evident that all of the locals ride around on these simple black bikes, and we didn't want to be the obvious tourists riding around on the bright yellow bikes that say "RENTAL" - so this made us feel like we knew what we were doing - until we started riding.
Riding bikes in Amsterdam is like no where else in the world - fast, chaotic, yet organized - and it feels like everyone else is in on these 'bike rules' that I was never taught as a kid.
- this website is a hilarious look at the rules of Amsterdams roads.
THE AMSTERDAM FOODHALLEN
After getting acquainted with our bikes, we made our way over to the Amsterdam Foodhallen. And yes, if you've read my blog (or know me) you know I am slightly in love with food, and especially food markets. What's not to love? A selection of different types of cuisines all in one room?! Heaven.
They have everything - mexican, french pastries, seafood, vietnamese street food, a spanish jamon bar, Mediterranean, a gourmet hot dog stand, Bitterballen (a Dutch take on croquettes), and what we went for: The "I want it all" plate from The Rough Kitchen (basically all sorts of smoked and tasty meats) & oysters from the raw bar. WOW.
After the Foodhallen, we roamed around the city a bit more.
We found a great little bookstore in the center of Amsterdam called Waterstones. 4 floors of amazing books ALL IN ENGLISH! We were in heaven. In Nuremberg, we have a nice little bookstore, but there is only a tiny little section with books in English, so this felt like we had all of Amazon at our fingertips.
We also stopped for some local brews while we watched the people bike past us in the area called Spui.
Towards the end of the night after our dinner, we met back up with friends on their 'being tourists in amsterdam' tour... As for what happened the rest of the night.... well lets say we did what the tourists would do visiting Amsterdam.
This was only day 1 in Amsterdam, to read more about the rest of our weekend in Amsterdam (including Vondelpark, boating on the canals, brunches & the Van Gogh museum) read on here.