Sweet Summer Days in Amsterdam

Westerkerk and Prinsengracht
When summer descends upon Amsterdam, the whole city is transformed. The trees are green with foliage, flower boxes are brimming with colorful perennials, the canals are abuzz with boats and partying passengers and terrace umbrellas line the sidewalks for the best of people watching.

This houseboat is cooling off under the shade of its own green plants. There are no limits to growing a garden. All you need are a green thumb and good weather.

bronze breast sculpture
Bronze Breast by Anonymous Artist
One of the important things to remember while walking around Amsterdam is to look down at the sidewalk to check if you are on a bicycle lane. Stay away from these lanes or risk being scolded by angry bikers (Motorcyclists also use this lane.) The other reason to look down at the cobblestone streets is sometimes there are surprises to behold. Like this bronze breast on the Oudekerksplein, outside the Oude Kerk (Old Church). A nod to the ladies of the night? Maybe. It's in the red light district.

Amsterdam canal cruise
Canal Cruise
There are many options for sightseeing in Amsterdam. One of the best ways to see the city is by taking a canal cruise. And this boat has a bar. Why not? An hour's cruise is 15 euros. Cheers!

Café Restaurant Amsterdam
Everyone wants to sit at a terrace restaurant during the summer. And there are a number of popular squares to do this in Amsterdam. The Rembrandtplein, the Leidseplein, the Spui area, they all attract the hordes of visitors to the city. At the former water pumping station near Westerpark, the Café-Restaurant Amsterdam serves dinner both indoors and on their terrace by the stream. I ordered the pasta with summer truffles and it was divine. This place is packed with diners so it's best to make reservations in advance. www.caferestaurantamsterdam.nl. 

the fiddler sculpture
The Fiddler
The Fiddler was on my bucket list so we headed to the Opera House after dinner in nearby Waterlooplein. This fiddler is bursting from the ground with his groundbreaking music. Here's another mysterious sculpture whose artist is unknown. Though there are whispers that this may be the work of the former queen, Beatrix, who is a sculptress. And the fiddler resembles her husband, Claus. 

Queen Beatrix
Princess Beatrix formely Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands
Speaking of the former queen, we spotted her outside the Opera after the show. It was my second time to see her and she graciously waved at us as her car sped away.

It's 10 p.m. and two days shy of the summer solstice. The sun had slid down from view and but left the horizon with a pale light so we could enjoy this long day at the Bosbaan. What a sweet summer night!

How much sweeter can summer days in Amsterdam be? These poffertjes were on the children's menu. But we adults love it just as much. So we ordered it for the visitor from another planet. And I have to say it was the best thing on the menu! :-)


Images by TravelswithCharie


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