All About Amsterdam

Originating from a small fishing village in the late 12th century, founded by two fishermen, Amsterdam today, is the capital and most populous municipality of the kingdom of The Netherlands. The name ‘Amsterdam’ comes from the river Amstel and the Dam that they built to be able to construct the city.

Apart from being one of the top 25 safest cities of the world, Amsterdam is not just a resident’s paradise but a traveler’s paradise too. It has a very rich architectural history and more museums per square meter than any other city in the world. But it is not just art and architecture lovers who will be pleased. Amsterdam has got something for every unique passion and interest a person may have.

Amsterdam is the city of bicycles. That is to say that it is one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in the world, with bike paths and bike racks and several guarded bike storage garages. Also, driving a car in Amsterdam is discouraged, because parking fees are expensive and many streets are closed to cars or just one-way. What could be a better way to explore a city than by riding a bike at your pace and admiring the beauty all around?

Shopping forms an essential part of any trip. There are lots of shops in the city, such as souvenir shops, clothing shops, entertainment shops, house stuff shops, flower markets, super markets, chocolate shops, and many other shops. You name a thing and there’ll be a shop for it. Talking about shopping, visiting one of Amsterdam’s open-air markets is a must. There’s a first-rate flea market on Waterlooplein, several lively street markets selling everything from fresh vegetables to clothes, plus smaller, specialist markets devoted to everything from books to flowers. There are many fashion brands too, like G-star, 10 feet, Warmenhoven & Venderbos and others and fashion designers, such as Mart Visser, Viktor & Rolf, etc. Amsterdam hence proves to be a land for all shopaholics and fashion lovers.

Amsterdam is said to be The Venice of the North. There are more than 100 kilometers of canals, about 90 islands and 1,500 bridges in Amsterdam. Some of the major canals in the city are Singel, Herengracht, Keizersgracht and Prinsengracht. Not to worry if you haven’t got a chance to be in Venice, Amsterdam is here to take care of that.

For those of you who can’t keep away from a little reading time, you could spend time at the Netherlands’ biggest library, the Centrale Bibliotheek where you can read the international papers for free, and while WiFi isn’t completely free, you can purchase 30 minutes for little more than a dollar by using one of the ticket machines. Here is the surprise element, upstairs on the 7th floor there is a cafe with a terrace that boasts wonderful city views.

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Post by Ritika Singal/ Travart Blogs

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