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  • Writer's pictureDavid Natale

Amsterdam: 5 Awesome Things About the City I Consider a Second Home

It's no secret that Amsterdam is one of the most exciting places on this Earth to visit and I count myself fortunate that I get to visit it so many times per year. Over the years I've grown attached to certain neighbourhoods and it's a joy walking into certain pubs or restaurants and having someone say, "Dave, you're back."

The thing I love about Amsterdam, aside from apple cake from Winkel 43, is how open and cultured and multi-faceted this city is.

With its rich history, artistic legacy, intricate canal system, and abundance of museums, you will find that there is a lot to do and see in the time you are there to visit. To help you come up with somewhat of an itinerary for your vacation, I've decided to write out a list of my top 5 things to do while you're in Amsterdam.

1. Take a historical canal ride. The water tours of Amsterdam are some of the most desired.

Since there are hundreds of canals throughout the nation that were created just for travel,

there is no reason not to give this popular attraction a try.

Your AmaWaterways cruise features a canal boat ride during the day, but consider renting one of the smaller boats for an intimate and personal experience for an evening or night time view.

2. Take a walk through the wildflowers or have a picnic in Vondel Park. Of course, Amsterdam takes great pride in its bulb flowers, especially tulips. A popular day trip from Amsterdam, and a core tour during Ama's Tulip Time cruise is a visit to Keukenhof, the amazingly vibrant bulb flower park in Lisse. Come with me on my special charter in April if you wish to see

the tulips in all their glory, but if you happen to miss the tulip season, don't worry. There are

plenty of bulbed flowers that grow year-round.

3. Visit one of the many spectacular art museums or history museums. Check out paintings

by Rembrandt, Van Gogh, or other world-renowned artists or revisit history by walking into the Anne Frank House, where you can see the secret annex where Anne hid during World War II.

4. Walk through De Wallen, the city's red-light district and take a peak at all the people having fun, enjoying the bars and vibrant outdoor life (and in the windows) . Although it's famous for what some might consider risqué behavior (and what I call fun), this part of the city is also home to some of its richest history. There is a lot to be seen and learned here and I heartily recommend taking a tour with my friend Henk to learn about the city's famous attitude of tolerance.

5. Last but not least, you mustn't leave the country without trying some of its authentic Dutch cuisines or experiencing one of its cannabis coffeehouses. People travel all over the world

to Amsterdam to encounter these coffee shops in person. In Amsterdam, marijuana is

simply a way to unwind, and these coffeehouses are some of the most reputable and

reliable sources to enjoy a delicious bite to eat and a puff of smoke in between visit to the various restaurants like Indrapura for Indonesian food, cafes for Dutch Apple Cake, or any one of the multitude of great places.

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