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Amsterdam Europe Netherlands

Visiting the Netherlands 2012

Visiting the Netherlands 2012

Although we had a few moments of concern when we learned that Copenhagen’s Metro ticket vending machines only took coins and not plastic, our flight from Copenhagen to Amsterdam was uneventful. Danish and Swedish portion of our vacation travels can be viewed at our Copenhagen, Denmark entry.

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Belgium Canada Explorer Denmark Europe Netherlands

Ottawa to Montreal before flight to Denmark

Ottawa to Montreal before flight to Denmark

Once Graeme and his brother, Alan, decided to fly to Denmark on a flight out of Montreal, the question then became how to get to Montreal from Ottawa. There are plenty of options. Although not always the case, from past experience the most expensive option is usually to get a connecting flight from Ottawa International Airport. Usually, the cost of this option is a determining factor but, since travelers need to be at the airport early to get through security screening, etc., time can also become a factor especially since airlines won’t book connecting flights unless there is adequate time (big buffer) at the Montreal end to transfer both luggage and passengers to the international flight.Winter weather also plays into the equation but in the summer is not normally a determining factor.

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Amsterdam Europe European Inspiration Netherlands

Amsterdam – Heineken Factory

Amsterdam – Heineken Factory

Due to my “chemical engineering” mind, I decided to check out the Heineken factory with fellow Contiki travellers… yeah I’m full of fun reasons. The museum is quite a complex set-up where history and equipment abound.

Look at me! I’m a beer Label… and clearly not a standing upright one either…

Interesting factoid – Heineken bottles sold in Netherlands and some other countries are sold in the original brown bottles. However, when marketing to the US and some other more “western” countries the bottle colour they used was green because in those markets brown was associated with well… you know.

Above is a picture of the Contiki Crew, whereas below is my chemical engineering instincts took hold!

Although admission to the museum was a bit expensive, it was worth the price of admission (if you like beer 🙂 ).

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Amsterdam Europe European Inspiration Netherlands

Amsterdam

Amsterdam

Amsterdam was our first city on the Contiki – European Inspiration Tour. The city with the Red Light District and Painted Elephant Statues…

Canals everywhere, feels a lot like home (Ottawa’s Rideau Canal).

There were a lot of bikes as well, the city is almost littered with them (in a good way).

Amsterdam also boasts the Van Gogh Museum, my primary reason for visiting this city. It’s a great museum except that no cameras are allowed inside so this a short blog entry.


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Europe European Inspiration Netherlands

To Amsterdam

To Amsterdam

A quick glance at the white cliffs of Dover and we got on a ferry bound for Europe!

The Trip over was pretty uneventful, time to talk to fellow travellers and start planning out Amsterdam.

We had to drive through Belgium, pretty nice country-side.

And, of course, the first place we stop… Mc Something or other!

We did stop along the way for windmills, once we were in the Netherlands!
Next, we visited a small town, and got to bike around to see the sights.

Our Bike tour took us along one of the multitude of canals.
We eventually reached a man-made lake, pretty cool to see.
Then, we headed back to the bus to head off to the next place – Cheese & Clogs!