Hallo, Amsterdam!

After months of waiting for my first adventure abroad of 2016, I had a crazy dash after work to drive home, pack everything for the weekend, and head up to Manchester to meet my friends Alice and Sarah who I’d be travelling with.

We stayed up far too long gossiping and catching up on the months since we last saw each other, and had to wake up far too early for our flight out to Amsterdam. But it was SO good to land in a city none of us had yet explored. So, straight to our beautiful apartment.

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Not too shabby, eh? I just love these windows, what a view to wake up to!

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Our apartment was on the top floor of a canal house – I can’t begin to describe how steep the stairs were! Think of it somewhere between climbing a ladder and the steepest stairs you’ve seen. I literally got vertigo every time we climbed up, so we knew we were in for a fun time when we arrived back drunk…

The buildings are so iconic and you can really see why New York was nearly called New Amsterdam.

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We headed out to explore and sample some of the local cuisine.

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Stumbling across the most adorable pub you’ve ever seen.

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After chatting to the guys behind the bar, we picked beers and chose most of the menu. Local cheese, and a kind of raw sausage with pickles arrived, before an assortment of fried goodies (don’t ask me what they were, but they were pretty tasty).

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We stopped off for coffee, before wandering the Waterlooplein Market, a famous Jewish market famed for its vintage, second-hand goods.

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Taking in all the sights and stopping for waffles en route, of course!

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After walking many miles of Amsterdam’s canals, we headed back to our apartment to get ready for the night ahead.

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We set off in search of the Red Light District, to see what the iconic Dutch landmark was all about. And we found it – it was really, really bizarre.

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We stopped for cocktails, and more cocktails, and a few more…

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And hey – it looks like the city knew what we were in for.

One thing I found incredible about Amsterdam was the way it treats alcohol and hangovers, against all the other substances that it treats so leniently.

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We left the city in all its glory before climbing somehow unscathed up the stairs to our apartment – what a great first day in Amsterdam!

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