Amsterdam is Awesome

Good Morning Ya'll! I hope you are lovin' 2015 as much as I am :) We already have one project under our belt at the house in this new year and are underway with two more. I'm working on putting those posts together and should have those for you soon! In the meantime, here's a recap on our brief stopover in Amsterdam from our trip. If you liked the Prague post, you will love Amsterdam too!

New York ~ Milan ~ Rome I and II ~ Prague ~ Amsterdam ~ Tokyo

After Prague we were headed to Tokyo, but we had a layover in Amsterdam. Instead of riding it out in the airport, we elongated it and gave ourselves 24 hours to explore the city. I'm so glad we did because I LOVED it!

From the airport it was a short 15 minute train ride into the city. Because we didn't have much time in Amsterdam we decided to make it easy on ourselves and stay at the train station's hotel. It was such a good decision and saved us so much time. A few funny notes about the hotel though...see that building straddling the train tracks? 

Yup, those are the hotel rooms! Luckily we weren't on the bottom floor and there's not much train traffic at night anyways, but it made me laugh when I realized we were literally sleeping over the train tracks. There was also a convenient vending machine. 

 :)

Anyhoo, we arrived in the city right after the sun set and took a boat tour. Because we were on a limited schedule we knew it would be a good way to see a lot in a short amount of time. Plus, everyone recommends the boat tours. It was great, but we didn't take many pictures since it was hard to get a non-blurry-picture-through-the-window-while-we-were-moving-and-rocking-especially-after-our-table-mate-moved-the-paper-we-had-over-the-table-light-to-block-the-reflection. But we did walk around afterwards and take a few pretty night pictures. 

The next morning we got ourselves up and walked everywhere we could in our half day. I absolutely loved the architecture here and the abundance of canals. Although the only use they seemed to get were from the tour boats.

Something I wasn't prepared for was the number of bikes. I think everyone has three. This bike garage was outside the front door of out hotel and every railing or street light you could see had bikes chained to them. 

I had no idea it was the preferred mode of transportation here. I had expected to see this in Tokyo to be honest, but Amsterdam blew it out of the water. 

While there doesn't seem to be any local traffic on the canals, there are a ton of house boats. Apparently they are in high demand because the city has capped the number allowed.

The only other thing we (aka the nerds) saw the canals being used for was repairs. 

And speaking of boats, The Engineer posted this picture of the yellow boat and everyone (us included) loved it. 

It is a pretty cool picture. And #nofilter

Still a really good picture :)

I think I could walk around Amsterdam for a long long time before I got tired of it. 

(market on the water)

Its so beautiful! Most of the apartments (less the massive insanely expensive ones) are only one room wide and 4 - 5 stories tall. Every single one has a 'hoisting arm' thinga-ma-jig on top to move furniture in and out because the stairwells are made really small to save space. Our boat tour guide said that the new buildings are still built this way even if the stair wells are big enough. 

We did notice that at night very few people seem to have blinds. I mean, I loved getting to see in all the different apartments because they are so unique, but eek!

We both also randomly ended up with kool kid photos from Amsterdam. I took The Engineers while he was waiting on me to do something (no clue what I was doing...probably taking another picture) but I looked up and he looked so cool so I snapped a pic. Mine came when The Engineer was setting up the self timer for a picture of us and I was waiting on him to get the camera set up just right. 

The next picture after mine kinda negates the kool kid factor since The Engineer didn't quite make it to his spot on time haha. 

What a goober. Don't worry, we found a much better spot later. 

We stopped by the Anne Frank House. 

I had read that the lines to go in get bad so we didn't really plan on going inside, but when we got there there was virtually no line. We debated going in but still decided that given our limited time we would rather explore as much of the city as we could and save it for next time so that's what we did. I never realized that I hadn't seen/fully remembered a picture of her house and it is definitely not what I had pictured in my head. I'm really glad I have an accurate idea now. We thought it was crazy to image what it must have been like to be there during that time. 

I miss you already Amsterdam, but I'll be back!