After dropping my belongings off at the hostel, I took a walk to the shopping and restaurant district called Nine Streets. Here, you will find many hip boutiques, small museums, and quaint cafes.
I had the pleasure of being able to do some cheese tasting at the Amsterdam Cheese Museum!
Last time I was in Amsterdam, I went to Pluk, a healthy cafe that serves fresh juice, coffee, cakes, and healthy meals. I returned to Pluk on this trip for something more sinister.
I had to have a slice of Apple pie! It seems like no matter where I went, Apple pie was on the menu.
After wandering around Nine Streets, I took the tram to Dam Square to explore. I guess you can say that Dam Square is considered the city center. I went straight to the clothing shops to see if anything caught my eyes. What I loved about the shops is that they’re all on very narrow cobblestone streets. It felt a bit out of place to be shopping at an Urban Outfitters on such a historic street but also very cool!
After browsing the shops, I went to the carnival to scope out the rides and food stalls.
There was one ride called “Around the World” or something like that, and it was the highest ride there. I figured, I am in another city and I want to do something out of the ordinary, so why not go on the highest ride to help get rid of my fear of heights? The ride was literally a plastic seat being held together by a metal chain, and it spins around and around.
I felt fine sitting in the plastic seat until we were being hoisted up in the air and the only thing that kept me from flying out was a metal bar that I held on for dear life. The view of the city was beautiful but the wind started to pick up and I felt queasy from the rocking of my seat.
Spoiler Alert: I am still afraid of heights! I couldn’t stop shaking after I got off the ride.
To reward myself for my bravery, I rewarded myself with a traditional Dutch sweets called Stroopwafel. It was SO good! Warm melted caramel in between two cookies! After I walked around a bit more, it started to rain so I went back to my hostel.
When dinner time came around, I took the tram to De Foodhallen. De Foodhallen is a food hall that is almost like a cafeteria with many different food / drink vendors in one big room.
I was immediately attracted to the BBQ stall and had a pulled pork sandwich for dinner from The Rough Kitchen.
What I really loved about De Foodhallen was that it’s communal seating and all the vendors were very diverse. There were Korean fried chicken, gourmet German sausages, Sushi burritos, and traditional Dutch food like Bitterballen.
I ate so much that night and I washed everything down with a cold pint. My first full day of exploring in Amsterdam was one of the best days I have had in the longest time. I was reminded of why I fell in love with traveling and exploring new places. I felt so liberated, empowered, and simply happy.