A day out in Amsterdam with children
On our recent holiday to Holland we couldn't resist visiting Amsterdam for the day. At just 45 minutes away from Duinrell, where we were staying with Eurocamp, it made for a very easy day trip.
I had done lots of research ahead of our trip, read countless blogs and had them all bookmarked, ready and awaiting our trip. However I ran out of mobile data on the first day of our holiday, and where I had thought I would be able to connect using Husband's phone as a hot spot, for some reason we could not get it to work whilst we were abroad. So I had an unexpected, (and very enjoyable,) week without the internet, but that also meant all those helpful websites I'd bookmarked were no longer available.
Turns out Amsterdam isn't one of those places you can just wing it...
We put Amsterdam centre into the sat nav, and as soon as we felt we were somewhere close to the action we picked a car park, albeit a very expensive one. Turns out Amsterdam is not so keen on people driving into the centre, which I can appreciate.
Now we knew that Amsterdam was famous for it's museums, but we had already decided that with 3 young children that would probably prove to be more stressful than anything. I'm sure there are plenty that are child friendly but we didn't know which they would be, and our love for museums isn't strong enough for us to attempt it with our rowdy bunch of children!
However, even without much of a plan, or any idea where we were going, we still had a really lovely day wondering the beautiful streets, and crossing all the pretty bridges, and admiring all the colourful, quirky, homes along the water.
One thing I did remember from all the blogs I had read was that you should take a boat ride. This seemed like a brilliant idea, but for some reason our Middle son was pretty worried by this and was getting quite upset, and we couldn't find the right place to get the boat from anyway, so we decided to leave it this time. As it happens we did go on a boat ride later that week at Zaanse Schans and it turned out Middle really enjoyed it, you live and learn!
The only Dutch I know I learnt from an episode of Friends. "Bloemen" meaning flower. Anyone remember that episode where Ross learns Dutch to try and get an apartment for Rachel? No just me?
Turns out my friends obsession came in handy though, as when we saw signs for the "Bloemenmarkt" we knew that would probably be a pretty place to go see, and as it turned out it was. Rows and rows of flowers shops lining the water, really something to behold.
We managed to find a lovely cafe for lunch, opposite the bloemenmarkt. We had one of those rare lunches where all 5 of us enjoyed our meal choices, and no children cried or changed their minds when they got their order. Anyone with fussy eaters will know what a miracle that is! We treated ourselves to some churros and waffles for pudding too, oh my the food was good! I enjoyed reading all the coffee facts on the wall too, pictured below if you want to learn a little something.
We finished off our day in Amsterdam with a visit to Vondelpark, a huge park space right in the city centre. I think if I've learnt anything from this trip it's that we're not really city people. I much preferred wondering around the pretty park and seeing the water and the flowers to wondering around the city. But hey maybe that's just me!
Either way, Amsterdam is a very lovely city and we really enjoyed our day out there, even with the children in tow.