Amsterdam--A Fantastic Family Spring Break Destination
During our last two spring breaks, we have taken advantage of super low airfares to visit Europe. Last year found us in Paris, and this year we skipped over the pond to live for one week in Amsterdam. Simply Awesome Tip: Start looking in November for airfare for March travel!
Consider A Visit During Shoulder Season
March is shoulder season in most of Europe, so you can enjoy fewer crowds and queues as well as lower lodging rates. We stayed in a beautiful canal-side apartment, and one morning we practically had the entire Royal Palace to ourselves.
Better yet, we never stood in line anywhere, except the airport of course. On the flip side, however, it’s generally cooler, and it was indeed chilly in Amsterdam the week we visited. So you might miss out on a picnic in the park, but in exchange you get to see Van Gogh's Sunflowers without peering over the heads of the crowds.
An Easy Introduction to European Culture
Amsterdam, the capitol of the Netherlands, is a lovely and charming city full of colorful architecture, canals and bridges, street markets, and world-class museums. For families visiting from the United States, it’s an easy introduction to visiting a European city as many residents speak English and most museums and restaurants include written English along with Dutch.
Something For Everyone
You’ll find plenty to do here between strolling alongside the canals, stopping at sidewalk cafes, eating Dutch delicacies at the street markets, and exploring museums. It’s a terrific family destination with something for everyone. Family-friendly options include treasure hunts at the museums, an amazing science museum, sampling food at the markets, or riding on a canal boat which offers a distinctly unique perspective of the city.
Meander and Discover
It’s a great city to simply roam and meander. You would not be short-changed by this city if all you did during your entire trip was walk along the beautiful canals marveling at the narrow, sometimes tilting canal homes with their gabled facades.
Every stroll will take you by boat-lined canals, arched bridges, and at least one cheese shop on every other block where you can sample deliciously-aged gouda cheese.
A Photographer's Dream
It’s also a photographer’s dream whether professional or amateur. The girls and I each enjoyed toting our camera with us each day, and I loved seeing the city from their viewpoint. See their photos below.
Enjoy A Slower Pace
Perhaps it’s the lazy canals meandering through the city or the fact that a bicycle is the most prominent form of transportation, but we found the pace to be slower and the streets less noisy than other European cities. It turned out to be a very relaxing vacation.
The Dutch aren't particularly known for their traditional cuisine, but you will have no problem finding delicious food here. They pride themselves on their Dutch pancakes (think sweet or savory crepes), waffles, cheese, chocolate, and french fries. You can also find all types of other worldly cuisines in the city as well.
Until Next Time...
When the time came, we weren’t ready to leave this beautiful, welcoming city and we look forward to a return visit one day. Perhaps a bike tour during tulip season, anyone?
Visit our Facebook Page if you'd like to see more photos of this trip.
Thinking About A Vacation To Amsterdam?
Too busy to read through a million blogs and guidebooks to figure out what you want to do in Amsterdam? Simplify your life with our 6-day itinerary. Everything you need to know: where to sleep, eat, and play!
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