Friday, 21 April 2017

My first solo trip part 2

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته and good day!

Back let's continue on the second day of my solo trip. If you don't remember the first part being that it has been so long ago, here's the link

Since I have two days to walk around and see the sights, that's exactly what I'm going to do. The tram station going to the city is just in front of my hotel, which is super convenient. The last stop is at the central station (Tram no. 4). That morning while waiting for the tram, I saw some VIP heading towards the city. 

I didn't think anything of it, so I just hopped on the tram with no worries whatsoever. Then after a while, I realised that the tram didn't actually go through the same route I went the day before. Since the announcement was in Dutch, I couldn't understand. After I confirmed that the tram will not go to the central station, I hopped off. 

I referred to the map that I have, which showed I can take another tram from the stop, but when I asked the driver, he said I should take the metro without explaining why. As I walked towards the metro station, I saw this museum. Most of the museum in Europe have entrance fees, that's why I decided not to enter any, even though they seem so interesting. 

I walked around and couldn't find the metro, so I decided to just take that other tram to go to the city centre. Some of the sceneries I passed by.

This is a Thai massage parlour. Reminds me of Angkor Wat.

This is the Westermarkt again. Yesterday when I went here to go to Anne Frank's house, I didn't notice something in front of it. I had to stop at this station as the tram was making another diversion.

It is the symbolic triangle of the homomonument. Long story short, it's a symbol of gay rights.

Then, I took another tram that led me here, the floating flower market at the stop Koningsplein. You can take a direct tram from Amsterdam central via tram 1, 2 or 5.  

It sure looks nice, doesn't it?

As I was not that far from the central, I decided to walk before the tram takes me to another place.

Saw this cute little thing, a mini lorry.

As I arrive at the central, I saw this main road was closed to vehicles.

I walked along the road to investigate what is happening. The road closure is the main reason all the trams were diverted and that was the reason the tram driver told me to take a metro instead (because it is underground). Grabbed some of the famous chips and continued walking.

There you go, this was the reason I got hauled around the city, not that I'm complaining. I saw a glimpse of guards (lots of them) while I was walking behind this building (which is the royal palace of Amsterdam). As I arrived, that ceremony or something has already finished. I tried google-ing, but nothing came up. 

So I just take some pictures and move on. There's are a few free walking tours that meet here. This place is called the Dam, same as the name of the tram stop. You can check their schedule online. It says free, but it is better if you tip the guide after yo finish. They did take you around the city and used up their saliva to tell you stories and histories of the place. It's only a human thing to do.

Amsterdam is a place with many narrow buildings. I searched for the narrowest building in Amsterdam, and found this! If you would like to read more on the architectural treasure of Amsterdam, click here

Chinese Malaysian are's a good thing too. Easy to find Asian food if you crave for it.

One of the things that are suggested for me to do and places to visit are the markets.

There are many markets here in Amsterdam, just like in London (probably not as much). This one (Nieuwmarkt) was closed when I arrived though. sigh~~

Another market is this one, Alber Cuyp market. 

It's kind of like a flea market. I was surprised to see this chicken stall. It's halal, and there's always a queue.

One of the things that I came to find is this, stroopwafels or also known as dutch waffles.

You can't go to the Netherlands and not try the stroopwafels. It's made up of two of these thin crusted batter with caramel in between. You can have it just like that, the original way, or top it off with some chocolate sauce on the side like this. 

You can't go wrong with either one.

Sorry Londoners, this costa doesn't sell coffee. It's a clothing outlet. =P

You just can't get enough of this canal view.

This is the bridge of 15 bridges. If you stand here, you can actually see 15 bridges in a row!!! [Google Map] Night view would be much better since there'll be lights at the bridge's arches. And if you can get a canal ride here, that'll be even better! My view isn't really that great, though. Sorry. 

Some more unique stuff you can find here in Amsterdam. The boat looked like an old shoe. 

If you can see the white fluorescent lights in the middle, that is actually one of the installations for the Amsterdam Light Festival. The festival starts on the day that I'll leave for London. haha..just my luck. Nevertheless, I still did get to find a lot of their installations, and some of them were turned on before the start date.

This is supposed to resemble the corals in the deep sea.

You can read the descriptions shown in the pictures.

These are the ones that I managed to find during the time I was there.

Another place to visit is the Magere Burg (skinny bridge) [Google map]. The bridge was skinny when it was first built in 1691, but it was demolished, replaced and renovated many times after that and made it like it is today. The use of the bridge is only for pedestrians and cyclist and is opened many times daily to make way for boats. 

You must've seen this in a video somewhere before right? If not, you can watch it here. It's one of the ways GVB tried to entertain the commuters. But this tram didn't have the monster on the window. I would've made the same video if it had. 

After all that fun for the day, I went back to my hotel. This is the rai convention centre where my conference will be held the next day.

That's my conference!

See the excitement. hahaha..

My hotel is just across the road. So convenient! 

Until next time...

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