Amsterdam – Tourists on bicycles, or how to get around
Tourists on bicycles, or how to get around
We already know more or less what to see in Amsterdam, so it’s worth thinking for a moment about how to get around it.
The capital of the Netherlands is a relatively small city. It has just over 800,000 inhabitants. The most important places in the old town are separated by a distance small enough to be successfully reached on foot. Those who decide to use public transport have trams, buses and the metro at their disposal. The same tickets, so-called OV-chipkaart, apply to them. Hourly costs 2.80 euros, daily – 7.50 euros, weekly – 32 euros (of course there are more time variants). Entering the vehicle, we bounce the ticket, leaving – we do it again. In this way, we start and stop “our” time. More information: www.gvb.nl
Combined cards have been prepared for tourists – All Amsterdam Transport Pass and I Amsterdam City Card. They entitle you to travel by public transport, cruise on the canals, access to selected museums. Sample prices: for a 24-hour I Amsterdam City Card you have to pay 47 euros, a two-day card costs 57 euros, while 72-hour is an expense of 67 euros.
Anyone who wants to get around Amsterdam by car should get some more cash and be patient. Parking spaces in the center are relatively few, in addition to cheap ones. You need to pay five euros for an hour ticket from the parking meter. There are also 24-hour parking lots for 30-40 euros. It is better, however, to leave the car outside the hotel.
Meanwhile, you can decide on another way to explore the city. Amsterdam is the kingdom of bicycles. Apparently there are over 900,000 in the whole city, which is … more than just residents. Cyclists benefit from many amenities, including an extensive path network. Renting a bike around the clock costs around 12 euros (see amsterdamonline247.com/top-20-things-to-do-in-amsterdam/)
The tailor sets up a hotel, i.e. where to stay
Tourists in Amsterdam should rather not have problems finding accommodation. There are over 300 different class hotels in the capital of the Netherlands. In addition, there are hostels, youth hostels, guesthouses.
When it comes to hotels, it’s worth mentioning the Hilton. It was there in 1969 that the famous photo of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, sitting in bed, was taken. Perhaps the most famous is the historic Krasnapolsky Hotel on Dam Square. Its name comes from the name of a Polish tailor, who came from the Netherlands in the mid-nineteenth century. First he set up a cafe, and then upstairs he arranged guest rooms. Over time, the shrine grew into a luxury hotel. He was the first in Amsterdam to have hot water and a telephone in every room, and first to use electricity. Today Krasnapolsky is the largest five-star hotel in the Netherlands. Prices, as everywhere, are variable. In mid-May you had to pay 459 euros for a single room.
Who can not afford it or wants to save, can even choose one of the hostels. The most popular are the Cosmos located near the Rijskmuseum, which has two-, four-, six-, eight- and twelve-seater rooms, and offers guests free continental breakfasts. Prices depend on the room, season and various promotions. They start from a dozen euros per person. In turn, from 23 to 35 euros you have to pay for a place at the International Budget Hostel. It is housed in a 17th-century former department store building and is located in the city center, along the picturesque Leidsegracht canal. It offers double or quadruple rooms, but to stay there you need to book a minimum of two nights.
Enjoy herring, or what to eat
Dutch cuisine is not widely known, but it is worth looking at it carefully. Local specialties include erwten seup, i.e. pea soup often served with dark, rye bread (roggebrood). You should also try broodje haring, which are small sandwiches with herring. The Dutch are also famous for the production of delicious cheeses: gouda, edam and mimmolette, beer and juniper vodka. In pubs, locals used to drink these two drinks together – a glass of juniper filled to the brim is served.
Wandering around Amsterdam, it’s worth taking a look at one of the traditional local cafes. According to Pascal’s guide (‘Amsterdam’, collective work, published by Pascal, Bielsko-Biała 1995), the first premises of this type were established there in the 13th century. The most characteristic are the so-called “bruin kroeg”, or “brown” (due to the decor and color of old furniture), as well as “proefkalen”, where strong drinks are served.
The climate in the Netherlands is similar to that in Poland, so we should not be surprised by any extreme weather phenomena. If you want to avoid crowds and explore the city in a somewhat calmer atmosphere, you should plan a trip in spring or early autumn.
Amsterdam is relatively easy to reach by car. Crossing free motorways in Germany and the Netherlands should not take more than eight hours (of course, from the Polish-German border). However, it is worth remembering that gasoline behind our western border is expensive. In addition, in the Netherlands, drivers must pay particular attention to speed limits. On highways, it is 120 km / h, and in places up to 100 km / h. There are severe penalties for breaking the rules.
You can reach Amsterdam by plane faster and more conveniently. You can fly to the capital of the Netherlands from different cities, with many lines (also cheap). The aircraft lands at Schiphol, one of the largest airports in Europe. It is 18 kilometers away from the city itself. You can beat it by rail – tickets cost 3.7 to 4 euros. The cost of a taxi is around 45 euros.