Top 5 Things to Do in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is city full to the brim with character, color and spells the trip of a lifetime to anyone who decides to travel there. From the sights, the reputation it’s not hard to see why hundreds upon thousands of people venture over to the Netherlands just to experience this widely cultured city. Yet once you get there, what is there to do? Well here’s just five (though there’s so many more) things you can do whilst you’re in, as the kids call it, Dam.

Cycle, cycle, cycle

If you haven’t heard comedic stories of the number of bikes you see around, then I don’t know what to tell you. Amsterdam is a bike city, with over 800,000 of them wheeling around the packed streets. They are a part of the city itself, the sound of the tyres spinning, and the wind in your hair as you zoom passed the buildings and the humble streetwalkers. If this description has got you excited to be cycling around you can rent a bike in Amsterdam and discover every little part of the City for yourself.

The Ice Bar

This bar has been the centre of attention in many a Facebook and Instagram photo. With the subjects wearing large coats and woolen hats with their glove-wrapped hands gripping a drink. The attraction is based on a very unique concept. It looks very aesthetic with everything looking like it’s made out of ice. Which to its credit, it is! Everything is kept at a consistent temperature of -10 degrees (Freezing) meaning that if you’re planning on wearing your shorts, I would urge you to strongly reconsider. This one though you cannot just walk in. You can book a ticket and it’s not too expensive for such a fun time.

Food

If you’re always hungry like me, you’ll be interested in the cuisine that can be found around the city. One key staple is the Herring carts. This fishy delicacy is served raw from vans, and before you go it’s worth doing some research as there is a specific way one should throw down this strongly tasting sea creature.

If you don’t have the stomach for that though, you may want to look at a more structured food tours around the city. One to look out for is the Hungry Birds tour where you will be transported around and given the opportunity to try all sorts of Danish street food.

…And drink

After a big lunch, breakfast or dinner, you’ll have to wash all of it down. Heineken offer the Heineken experience, where you can find out how a small brewery became what it is today. You’ll also see how it is brewed. It also includes 2 free beers if you want to try what you’ve just been taught about, as well as a free map to all the secret gems in Amsterdam, so you can do your own, slightly tipsy, exploring.

Canals

Another thing that Amsterdam is famous for is its canals, so you would be remiss to not jump on for a boat tour. There are many places that offer canal tours as well as a combined offer of the Heineken Experience as well as a canal tour (if you can stomach it!) There are also different qualities of trip included a luxury options, so whether you’re treating yourself, a significant other, or your best friend you can find a boat trip that is just right for you.

These are only 5 of the many, many, many attractions in this wonderful place so look out for any we missed.

 

A Backpacker’s Guide to Travelling Europe

Deciding to backpack can be a daunting but exciting time and without proper planning or travel experience you may not end up having the time that you expect. My advice would be to sit down and make a plan for the places that you want to visit and even the specific landmarks that you want to see. The important thing to remember when it comes to backpacking is that the opportunity to go backpacking isn’t one that comes around too often so it is vital to ensure that you get everything that you want from the experience so you can look back on it without regretting not doing more.

Another important tip when it comes to backpacking is to pack well, with only a limited amount of travel storage there are certain limitations to what you can bring with you. Don’t overpack when it comes to clothes, I would advise to pack a weeks worth of clothing as you will find that whether you stay in hostels or hotels there will more than likely be laundry facilities available for you. Saving space by packing fewer clothes allows for you to pack the important things such as maps, food and drink, medicines and first aid supplies, it is important to think about the situations you are going to be in because although backpacking comes with a certain spontaneity it is always better to prepare for the worst and not need it rather than be caught in a situation without the necessary equipment. 

A final thing that I would consider when backpacking through Europe would be to enjoy yourself, you only get the opportunity to backpack so many times in your life and it’s too short for you to not take any of these experiences, do what you want and visit wherever you want.