It’s officially been one month since my last holiday, so I thought I’d take this opportunity to write a post about my Amsterdam trip. Plus it gives me something to do this Sunday because it’s snowing… again!
Last month, I was finally able to enjoy the present my boyfriend got me for my 22nd birthday – a day trip to Amsterdam! And if there’s one word I’d use to describe how that weekend went, it would definitely be weird. Yup, you read that right. We travelled by ferry from Hull to Rotterdam (here’s the link to P&O Ferries if you’re interested), which was a first for me and I actually enjoyed it because it was quite a pleasant journey.
I didn’t get a chance to take a photo of the room we stayed in because we were far too hungry, but what I can tell you is that the room is tiny; we got a Saver ticket so we had the Standard Cabin. There were two bunk beds that folded away, a small vanity with a stool and the ladder to the top bunk where I slept hung on the side so it’s out the way. The ensuite was again, tiny, but it had toiletries and towels so you had everything you needed. The shower was even smaller than the one I had in my uni flat, if you can believe it, and I found out the next day that flooding the ensuite was very likely so long showers were a definite no-go.
Top tip! Take an international adapter with you. We forgot to take one with us so we had to buy one on board, which was more annoying than anything really.
After quickly leaving our things, we headed straight for the buffet, which was paid for in advance so there was less faffing about. I found that around 90% of the staff on board were Filipinos and it didn’t take me long to get chatting with them about missing home – they were the nicest bunch and it made me feel a little less homesick, which is always great. Anyway, were seated, ordered our drinks and then attacked the buffet, which was called The Kitchen. It might be a bit expensive, but there are loaaads of different kinds of food, so it is worth it. I’d recommend paying for the buffet in advance (you get 10% off) if you want to save a little bit of money.
After the meal, we walked around for a bit before finally settling at the Show Lounge. A couple of drinks later, a band came on and we stuck around for a couple of hours before going back to the room for a good night’s sleep. How boring are we?
The next day, we finally arrived at Rotterdam! We got our passports checked and got onto the bus for an hour and a half transfer to Amsterdam, which went by quickly. As soon as we got dropped off, we milled about until we saw a chip stand called The Manneken Pis, so naturally we ordered some and I got mine with garlic sauce, because why not?
With our chips polished off, we started making our way to the I Amsterdam sign. It was such a scenic walk so we kind of took our time and we even stopped at a few shops, but the one I remember the best was a little art gallery showcasing Banksy’s work and a few other artists too. I actually managed to take a few photos here so I’m gonna let them do the talking for a bit!
The I Amsterdam sign was packed when we got there, which didn’t surprise me at all. I’m glad we managed to snap a few photos before it got busier though! We walked around for a bit and tried to get in the Van Gogh museum, but surprise surprise, it was busy and the queue to get tickets was crazy and we didn’t really have the time to stand and wait so we left and decided to head back to Dam Square and head towards the Red Light District.
So, as you’re not actually allowed to take photos of the Red Light District (unless you have permission), I didn’t risk taking any because I didn’t want to pay a fine or get in trouble. Overall, I thought the whole place was weird. I thought there’d just be a wall of prostitutes, but instead they line alley after alley! I definitely didn’t expect that at all.
We walked around the district for what seemed like ages before going to the Bulldog Bar for a quick drink. Next on our agenda was to visit a coffee shop so we went to the Bulldog Coffeeshop, which wasn’t very far at all. First impressions? It was loud, it stunk of weed and it was very, very busy so I didn’t bother pulling my phone out to take photos. You can probably guess what happens next but after that little experience, we went back to the Bulldog Bar for a few more drinks and something to eat before hurrying back to the drop off point to get back to the ferry.
A pretty hectic, weird but great experience, Amsterdam is a city full of surprises and it’s a place I’d definitely visit again! I’d go for a long weekend though to fit in all the things I want to see and do, like the Anne Frank museum, the Van Gogh Museum, Vondelpark, the Foodhallen and do a canal boat tour. What was supposed to be a quick post turned out to be a bit lengthy, but oh well, it’s at least given me something to do today. I hope you enjoyed reading!
Have you been to Amsterdam before? What did you think? Have any recommendations for our next visit? Comment below! I’d love to hear from you!