Saturday, June 14, 2014

Amsterdam picture diary

On Wednesday I went to a city which I haven't been to very often: Amsterdam. It's silly because it's only a two hour train ride away from Belgium. So I wanted to see this city again and brought my brother along for a day of sightseeing and shamelessly acting like tourists.

I had a meeting in the morning but after that we had the whole day to explore the city. The weather was incredible which made the canals look even prettier. A city with so much water, it almost creates a holiday feeling!

Amsterdam is full of little café's which are slightly hipster and appealing. I love that the café's are all unique unlike all the franchises in London for example. 

We walked across all the canals because I had written down some foodie spots I wanted to visit. 

To my surprise, two of the places on my list were in one building: Marqt and George Deli. We were hungry so we first went up to George Deli. The building is very cool and industrial looking. 

George Deli is part of the 'George' restaurant group I had once read about. George Deli is an American style restaurant which serves up breakfast-lunch-brunch. I love the interior of this place, especially the marble counter. 

I ordered a chicken Caesar and my brother had a chicken-avocado sandwich. The food was good, I'd say a little pricey for pretty simple food - but normal compared to London prices. I want to come back here to try the breakfast though. The service was really friendly unlike what I've read from reviews. There's free wifi which is always a bonus (for Instagramming of course) wifi name: eggsbenedict password: deliatwork 

After lunch we headed downstairs to have a look at Marqt, the Dutch answer to Whole Foods. 

It's smaller than I expected, but then I guess I'm used to the large Whole Foods' we have in London. There's 6 Marqt shops in Amsterdam so the others might be bigger. Fresh, organic, natural foods, all delicious but also pricey. A much smaller variety of foods compared to Whole Foods but I guess this is quite good for Amsterdam. Marqt is a great place to get some speciality foods when you live in Amsterdam :) (note: they don't accept cash here)

After buying some chocolates and water, we continued our little tour and headed to the Rijksmuseum while passing some cute squares, shops and more coffee places. 

I had never been to the Rijksmuseum, it's quite an impressive building and a place you can't miss as a tourist. Unfortunately museums aren't free like in London, and there's no student prices either. We decided to have a peek inside anyway.

The library inside is very impressive

Two famous works by Vermeer. You'll probably know The Milkmaid painting on the left, but I preferred the one on the right Woman In Blue Reading A Letter. If you're not familiar with these works you'll know Vermeer from The Girl With A Pearl Earring (that one is in The Hague though)

After the museum we decided to enjoy the weather a bit more and discovered a 'pool' behind the museum and famous I Amsterdam sign. Perfect to cool off on a hot day like this. 

This area is called Museumplein and houses three big museums: het Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum and het Stedelijk museum. We had a look at the two others too since it's all close by. This wing of the Stedelijk museum below is also know as the Bathtub, can you see the resemblance? ;)

Next to the museum there's a little park with a view on het Concertgebouw, the concert building. 

After this we headed back to one of the canals - Keizersgracht - to have a look at another place on my list: Marie Stella Maris Archives, the brand new shop by the water brand Marie Stella Maris. The shop has lots of beauty products, and downstairs you'll find a tiny café. 

I'll definitely stop for a drink here next time, so cute!

Taking a little break from all the walking :)

The last spot of the day was a recommendation from Annemerel. She works in Amsterdam so I thought she'd know a good spot. She recommended to get some ice cream at Ijscuypje so we did! I had vanilla ice cream with strawberries we bought at the supermarket. Perfect combination and a great way to end the day before heading back to Belgium. 

As you may understand I was really impressed with this city. Okay, it also has it's more shady streets but the canals and cosy streets make up for it. I had a lovely day and hope to go back there soon. Leave recommendations if you have any :)

© whiskers & lions

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