Yesterday I was waiting for my tram when a camera crew of a local channel, AT5, asked if I wanted to give my opinion about Amsterdam and it’s hospitality. The cause: apparently Amsterdam is going down rapidly on the list of hospitable cities in Europe. That was a surprise to me, since I always hear from my foreign friends how friendly all Dutch are. I guess not all of them are… Especially tourists complain about the lack of friendliness of tram personnel, waiters, shop attendants and last but not least; bikers. Hearing about the last category made me laugh, since I also have been involved once in hitting a tourist who was walking on the bike path without noticing and didn’t move when I rang my bell.
Last weekend, I had an American friend over who I met while living in Münster, Germany (I will post pictures another time). So I’ve been doing all the tourist things you’re supposed to do when you’re in Amsterdam and I have to say that everywhere people were really nice to us. Besides the standard things (Van Gogh Museum, canal tour, visit a coffeeshop – no smoking for me, have a stroll through the Red Light District, go out at Leidseplein) we discovered a new place. It’s is a really cool place at the beach called Blijburg. It’s easy to reach (tram 26 from the Central Station, get out at the last stop) and so different from many other places in Amsterdam. Even though the weather wasn’t that great, it still had a really good vibe so I can’t wait to go back there during the summer! Their website has beautiful and cool pictures of their place and the people who visit, it’s worth checking out.