After a quick 5.5 hour bus ride from Cologne to my layover in Dortmund, then to Amsterdam. I made it safe and sound on possibly my last Flixbus ever because I don't think they hsve Flixbus over in the UK. Withing the first minute of stepping off my bus(no joke), I smelt some weed, I'm in Amsterdam baby!
This was the very first city I had done completely by myself with no other influence or meetings with anyone and I absolutely loved it! Something about the timidity of figuring out a new metro system and the uncertainty of the direction you are walking and the freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want.
Getting in to Amsterdam, my phone was dead so I had to figure out how to get to my hostel that was 4 miles away.
I took a couple metro's (which was arguably the easiest metro system ever) to get to a station on some sort of college campus where I got off and walked 1/3mile to my hotel/hostel. I arrive there around 3pm ready to shower and do a little work on my laptop! I order some cheaply made nachos for 4.5 Euro at the restaurant in the hostel called "The Dude"as well as an 8 euro pint of hefeweizen... Not worth the price for the beer.
I started working on my last blog post about Cologne, Germany. It mainly took up that whole first night before I passed out at 10:30pm.
The following morning around 8:15 am, I get up, get ready and hit the metro station (I had already bought a 3 day long metro pass for 17 euro).
I get to the station around 10am and apparently I enter the wrong station and end up having to buy another 3.3 euro ticket that was just a waist until I went to the right station and enter the metro. After walking around frustrated for little while I end up making the correct metro and head in to the the city center.
I got off 2 exits before the city center exit and decide to walk. One of the first things I see is a farmers market like event, people were still setting up as it was Monday morning around 10:30am still. I go past the market towards the city center and I see a "Coffeeshop Reefer" sign on a buildig so I take a couple pics and go inside.
I check out their menu and they have a few different varietals, charging double for Cali. I buy some sandwiches and take them to go... The rest of the trip is history baby!
After eating a sandwich soon after, I head in to the city where I am completely amazed! This was one of the most awesome looking cities I've ever seen! I had no idea it was a water based city until I stepped food in there!
It reminded me of Venice but a lot better.
One thing that will never get out of my mind is the amount of bikers there!
The city is seriously run by bikers! Since there isn't many cars in the city, it makes it easy to walk around. I went through the Red Light District for the first time this morning and I only saw a couple girls, not the top of the line ones at that... I'd expect a Friday night to be a little more popular. It was a gorgeous area and I didn't feel threatened around the area at all.
Later on that day, I dragged myself back to my hostel after stopping at a very generic (as everything seems to be there) cafe diner/restaurant. I had an English breakfast with eggs, toast, and bacon and it was pretty good!
I had a couple small Amstel's there as well. I hopped on the metro to go back to my hostel to take a nap and go out once more in the afternoon.
I met my bunkmate who was from Vienna, which I was in for a week a month prior, and he gave me half a special cookie that I ate before my nap which I didn't even fall asleep for.
I wake up from my half-assed attempt at a nap and abruptly arise at 6pm and decide to man up and just go out in Amsterdam in the evening by myself. I walked around in Amsterdam near roughly the same area as earlier in the day.
I was hungry so before I got to the college metro station, I stopped at a craftbeer/restaurant in the college quarters close to my hostel and had a burger and a couple craft beers. I walked around the city for a while but I was pretty lit so I don't remember too much.
By the time I get back to my hostel, I'm pretty hammered so I needed to go to bed. I order another thing of nachos once I get back to my hostel and scarf them down real quick. My stomach didn't sit well with me that night lol
I woke up the following morning (my last full day in the Schengen Region) around 8:30am and decided to get even more of a jump start on my day than yesterday so I left my hostel by 9:45pm after having printed out my boarding pass for my flight to Dublin the following day.
I get off on the same station as before, walk through the red light district for the 3rd time and make my way towards the more western part of the city. I was just minding my own business seeing the majestic buildings in the heart of this gorgeous water based town and I happen to see some craft beer in a window stand, I pop my head in to this liquor store looking building and it turns out this shop got ranked as the number 1 craft beer bottle shop in all of the EU!!! I spent a good hour in here just looking at all their beers and talking with two different employees there. I was in awe!
They had beers like Yeti and Yellowbelly that I couldn't even find in my own home country. They told me to come back around 5 when the owner/beer man would be in to talk to him, my intention was to come back to that craft beer bottle shop to talk to the owner..
I passed that craft beer bottle shop on my way to this big park that I wanted to go chill out at and watch the people run un a green park in this city made of water and stone with very few grass land. It was nice to see a park out here!
I eat a sandwich at the park just enjoying the gorgeous sun on a lovely Tuesday before making my way to the metro station to hit the hostel to take another siesta.
I woke up from my hour long nap around 5:30 pm and needed to hop in the shower. After the nice relaxing shower I made my way out to the metro to hit Amsterdam one last time. I go back to the craft beer bottle shop around 7pm but didn't know what I'd say so to the owner if I talked to him, I got a little social anxiety and didn't do it sadly. I didn't even end up mentioning my earlier encounter there...
I just bough three craft beers and left the bottle shop to go to this little Italian restaurant right on the river. For my last dinner in the Schengen Region I had a Diavola pizza all to myself on the river with a pint of Lagunitas IPA on tap! I was a happy hoppy boy.
I make my way back through the red light district one last time before arriving at the metro station to make my last trip back to my hostel. It was only 9pm at this time and spend the next hour outside in the breezy night taking it all in.
I was in bed ready to leave out to Dublin the next day by 10:30pm.
I had never been to a city quite like this before! The people were SO friendly! Everyone seemed so robotic and like "it makes sense, sure, why not" I loved the people!
Everyone spoke English there which was super nice! I didn't feel uncomfortable at all to stop in a restaurant and order some food or a drink. Their native language is so funny sounding! It makes me smile just listening to them. The food, from what I saw, was a mixture of everything with more pancakes then normal.
If I could change one thing about this trip is to take some friends along for the ride. I didn't get to go out and explore the night life because I'm not comfortable enough to go out on my own by myself at night. If I could have some friends along for the ride, I bet the night life would be out of this world.
At 10:30am, I left the hostel, to make my way towards the Amsterdam airport to fly on over the water to Dublin, Ireland!
Make sure to check out my next blog post which will be about my adventures out in Dublin, Ireland!
Thanks for reading!