Sunday, July 27, 2014

Amsterdam first impressions

Time for an update about my first one and a half week in Amsterdam. I already love it here, the city, the weather (lucky I guess), my internship, the cute caf├ęs, the canals and the bikes everywhere. I’m not completely familiar with the city and streets yet, but I’ve been walking around a lot so I’m slowly getting there. I haven't been blogging so much since I need to adapt a bit to working life, but I update my Instagram every day :) 
My first impressions of Amsterdam (also compared to London):

- The city centre is tiny compared to London so it doesn’t feel intimidating at all. There's lots of different canals but everything 'evolves' around the three major ones: Herengracht, Keizersgracht and my favourite, Prinsengracht
- The weather has been so good and every evening there's people in boats on the canals having a picnic or a drink, super cosy!
- Everyone seems to be dressed much more casual than in London. Downside: no more men in suits (almost). Upside: sneakers at work!
- I need to be careful not to get run over by trams, cars or bikes because the streets in the centre don’t really “feel” like streets so I get distracted sometimes. 
- I’ve also noticed that Amsterdam has so many organic, natural and healthy shops, restaurants and juice places which is quite nice and I can’t wait to try out some more places. 
- Finding something ‘quick to eat’ is a little bit more difficult because London kind of spoiled me with Pret a Manger, Itsu and other grab-and-go food places. There’s so much less franchises here which I actually like a lot because this adds so much more personality to the city (that is, if you avoid the super touristy places with one fastfood place next to the other). 
- Because Amsterdam is so small, you also notice the tourists much more, but I don’t mind because it makes the city feel quite international. The queue at the Anne Frank House is insane though (people queueing up at 8 am as if it's the Louvre).

Some pics:
Beautiful Passiflora flower // Prinsengracht 

New jeans found at the Zara sale // cutest car and perfect for Amsterdam where it's impossible to find parking spots 

 I played with the CUTEST dog ever, a mix between Jack Russell and a Teckel / / resting during my run with some fresh orange juice (you can make your own at Albert Heijn for €2, amazing!) overlooking the Museumplein and the Rijksmuseum (see first pic of this post)

Beautiful Amsterdam // a little wine at work never hurt anyone, right? 

Cooling off after my workout with fresh watermelon // sunset 

"Art is therapy" at the Rijksmuseum // cosy terrace at George WPA 

Tony's Chocolonely is amazing chocolate they sell in Amsterdam and I got a little one at work from a colleague (ok it was melted but still good) // typical Amsterdam image

The only downside of my move to Amsterdam is that I didn’t know it would be so difficult to find a place to live. I’ve been looking for a room or flat for over a week now and I still haven’t found anything but I’m confident that I’ll find something next week (crossing my fingers!). edit: I found a place to live, yay! I can’t wait to get my bike here and my stuff (like my camera) because living with one small suitcase a week is not “my thing” haha! Despite that little drawback, I’m loving it here and even though I work full time, I’m quite happy to spend my summer in this cute and cosy city!

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© whiskers & lions

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