So, I couldn't post my travel update yesterday as the hotel Internet wasn't great and I had a really long tiring day. But here is what we did in our 2 days in Amsterdam.
- Landed in Amsterdam at 8:20am on 26th Aug (yesterday)
- Very odd weather for "summer", windy and cold and a bit of rain, looked more like early winter weather (based on Boston winters that is.. maybe its common to be this way). The point is though, its good to pack at least a thin sweater and a windcheater with a cap for the rain.
- The hotel (Hotel Manofa) is a hotel with a huge number of stairs and no elevator at all. To get to the first floor where the rooms were, you had to climb at least 20 stairs, which was a disaster. The guys there had my room on the fourth floor ( :( ) but after requesting he moved it down to the 2nd floor, which was still awful with its narrow, winding spiral staircase, but better.
- The room was pretty bad and I didn't like the guy asking for money as soon as we checked in. The door didn't have a double lock, it had a huge window that looked directly into the kitchen of another house, and seemed really tiny for a triple room. Lots of other tiny problems, but I'll leave that for Yelp someday :(.
- Breakfast was at a non-veg steak house downstairs, so I couldn't eat there either.
- Anyway we left our luggage at the hotel and went off to Bloemnmarkt and spent 2 hours just browsing that entire street. Mom in particular loved the huge number of flowers that were on display everywhere.
- Had lunch and then Mom and me went to Max Euwe Plain and watched a few people playing chess on the street. That was pretty unique too.
- Did plenty of tram travel (2 day card for 12 Euro is very very affordable, buy it as soon as you land in Amsterdam). Dad went off on his own little "tram tour", just getting in and out of trams and coming back to Centraal eventually.
- We tried to book tickets for Anne Frank's tour online but they were sold out till Sep 8 (14 days in advance). That was a big disappointment as Mom had badly wanted to see the museum. So we then at least decided to go over to the museum and look at the exterior, before meeting Dad again at Centraal. On looking at the line though, I decided to stand and make an attempt at least to get tickets. Gave Mom directions to meet Dad at Centraal while I stood in line (it took about an hour and 15 minutes), by which time Mom returned with Dad in tow. All 3 of us visited Anne Frank - a very sobering story of a little girl and reminded everyone how terrible concentration camps were.
- Headed back to the hotel then as Dad's knee was very bad by now. I went off to Terazen vegan cafe to get some food. Food was pretty good, just that I had a small argument with the chef about some money issues and he claimed I was insulting his honesty. Anyway it all got sorted out in the end.
- Ate dinner and slept early. Had a pretty rough day frankly, although... we did manage to see quite a few things.