Amsterdam: Day 1

After visiting Amsterdam last month I thought it was about time I get around to writing about my visit. It’s annoying when life gets hectic and you can barely find the time to breath let alone write a blog post. I visited this wonderful city for 6 days and had an incredible time. The city of Amsterdam is such an incredible place and I hope by reading about my visit it will inspire you to pay Holland a visit or give you some hints, tips or travel inspiration to knock your wanderlust into 5th gear and get you itching to hop on a plane and explore. 

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My Last Night In Amsterdam 

Hi all,

I’m currently sitting in a hostel in central Amsterdam. It’s pouring with rain outside and it’s ridiculously windy so I have taken shelter in the warm cafe with a black coffe and some dark chocolate. I am writing this on my phone so please do bare with (I hate typing things on my phone urgh).

 
Tonight’s my last night here in the Netherlands after arriving on Thursday. I’m actually really sad to be leaving. When you say you’re going to Amsterdam a lot of people immideatley think of the Red Light District, the prostitutes and the fact you can smoke weed in cafes as it’s perfectly legal. This amazing city has so much more to offer than just these few stereotypes. For example the fact that cycling is one of the main modes of transportation is amazing. 

The bike parking outside the station
I love cycling and I once hired a Boris bike whilst in London before but cycling around the busy car packed streets there scared me half to death. Here in Amsterdam however it is so bike friendly. I loved seeing people riding around with there kids on the handlebars or a passenger sitting on the back of their bike. Next time I visit, now I know my way around, I’m going to hire a bike and cycle everywhere.

 Another great thing is the architecture. One of my favourite things to look at is the canal side housing. As the city was built on marshland all the houses were built on wooden foundations. Overtime as the water levels have changed these have sunk and therefore a lot of the buildings appear crooked or lopsided which means these quant houses are oozing so much charm and quirkiness, it’s crazy. A lot of these houses also have great historic pasts which I found out about on the canal boat tour we went on.

When I get back home I will write a series of posts about my time here. The places I went, thins I’ve seen, where I stayed, what I did and some general tips.  

At the Icebar
 I couldn’t reccomebd visiting this wonderful city more, it is an absouloutley outstanding place.  I’m really sad to be returning home tomorrow but I’ve had a fantastic time and can’t wait for my next adventure.

Love Rebecca x

A Day In… Bristol

Bristol. All I really knew about this west country city was that one of my best friends from University, Emma, lived there and also that it had a really big Primark. 12404128_10156362999905158_441176027_n.jpg

I’d been up to visit her a few times. We’d usually have a few drinks in The Hatchet Inn, which is a rather cool alternative sort of pub, and went to this night out thing called Pop, Bubble, Rock at The Lanes bowling alley. The next day would usually consist of mega hangovers and finding remains of half eaten food scattered around the room looking very sorry for themselves. A strewed battlefield of chips and pizza. Oh and there was also this one time we got mega lost trying to find our way to Hobbycraft…. For me that was pretty much Bristol. A fun place where everyone has really happy sounding accents.

Last week I got sent up to Bristol with a few of my ‘work colleges’/ actual friends for a quiz. Said quiz had finished by 11:30 am leaving us pretty much the whole day to sort of aimlessly wander about and explore, kind of like a Panda looking for some decent Bamboo (before he inevitably falls asleep).12435773_10156362999730158_70636681_n.jpg

The first thing I have to say is that Bristol actually has a pretty okish German Christmas market, unlike my uni town of Southampton which I always find thoroughly disappointing (how the heck are E-cigarettes festive?!). If you fancy picking up a Bratwurst of a Schnitzel you know where to go. Bristol also has some decent shops. Of course there are all of the main high street options for your general unimaginative shopping needs, but there are also some really great vintage and book shops a bit further out of the main town centre. These are definitely worth a visit, especially If you are a hopeless book enthusiast. I picked up some pretty great books for about £2.50 at some indepentednt book shops and at Fopp, which I didn’t realise was so good!

We didn’t venture anywhere particularly exciting or adventurous for food, there are a few amazing places in Bristol I would definitely return to and review in the future, but we settled for a Five Guys, which of course does burgers so good you want to melt into the floor like a puddle of happiness. My friends also had bubble tea, I personally don’t trust it as those bubbles look like a chocking hazard, but apparently its good.

Bristol Is also a hub of creativity. Artists, Animators and Activists mingle among the people with cool tattoos, gals with bright hair and the many MANY students. You can roam around the city and casually run into a Banksy and be like “oh, this perfectly embodies a political statement of some sort, oh and look that guy is naked”.12421654_10156362999490158_747447883_n

Whilst there I walked past the museum which had an exhibit on called ‘Death: The human experience’ (click here for more information, it looked awesome) which Im really gutted I wasn’t able to go to (this may also be the perfect excuse for me to go back and buy many more cheap books.)

So my overall view on Bristol is that I only really got to see the tip of the iceberg. If I had a bit more time, and some more appropriate foot wear (never wear new shoes when walking around lots, unless you really don’t like yourself) there were some hidden gems that were just screaming unearth me unearth me. Bristol is such a great city with a really distinctive personality, sort of like how there are really distinctive types of cheese, (mmmm Halloumi). Bristol is the Halloumi of the west of England and is definitely worth an explore. And like you needed any more convincing to visit this city, there was a guy blowing insane amounts of bubbles on the high street, score!