Date: 19 February 2010
It was already dark when we reached Amsterdam. Our bus was parked quite far from the restaurant that we will be having our dinner. So we had to walk there. This gave us the chance to see a little bit of Amsterdam. The most interesting thing was the use of bicycle... so many people were riding them. Imagine if people do the same in Malaysia...
1) cyclist might get hit by the super drivers and rempits
2) cyclist will be sweating (like mad) when they reached their destination... and also BO problem.
3) cyclist will spend more time pushing their bikes going up hill (Holland is a very flat country, so less challenging)
After dinner, it was drizzling with snow flakes.We proceeded to our hotel for slumber time.
Checking-in: Holiday Inn, Amsterdam
Date: 20 February 2010
It was a bright morning. Our first activity was river cruising on the many canals in Amsterdam. Our seat was next to the toilet (what the tut tut?) and it was really annoying hearing all the flushes which I think goes straight into the river. We passed the house of Ann Frank, the Jewish girl who wrote a diary during World War 1. The houses in Amsterdam are really narrow with big windows...
In the canal boat
The river in Amsterdam
The houses - narrow with big windows!
Next was a diamond factory visit - after hearing the info provided by the salesperson, Hasben and I went outside for some picture taking, and afterwards, had some free coffee, courtesy of the factory. Diamonds.. hmm.. not really my thing..
Big fat diamonds and the diamond cutter.
City of Bikes!!!
Our next destination was Volendam, a very cute fishing village. Before reaching Volendam, we made a few stops at a cheese factory - the lady showed us how cheese and clogs were made, and a big windmill for photoes.
Making clogs - the wooden shoes.
The fishing boats were not in use during the winter due to the frozen seawater. We were able to walk on the frozen sea!! A first for us - I never thought it was possible!! Dikes were built along the shore to avoid flooding as Volendam is located lower than the sea level.
Volendam - the shop lots.
Frozen sea - The boats cannot move!
Walking on the frozen sea! Oh yeah!
We shopped for souvenirs in the cute village and headed back to the city of Amsterdam.
Mr. Tan brought us to the Red Light District. Before that, he warned us not to point fingers, laugh, or snap pictures. I was wondering what the warnings were about... then, I saw the ladies displayed in the shop windows... very very sexy (imagine lingerie)... waving at the men in our group. Hasben was holding my hand tightly... to show that he was not interested (yeah right!)... I was wondering how the teenage boys in my tour group felt... I am sure they wished they didn't come here with their parents, haha!
The Red Light District - Nope, I'm not showing any pictures of the girls~
After that, it was free and easy. Some went to the Sex Museum (hmm hmm), some went shopping... as for Hasben and I, we walked for 1 hour to and from Hard Rock Cafe Amsterdam. Even in the cold weather, I was nearly sweating... But mission accomplished! Amsterdam pin - check!
With Hard Rock shopping bags!
Night time in Amsterdam - The canal boat, the tram, and the houses.
That's all from Amsterdam... we went back to Holiday Inn and called it a day!