Life in The Netherlands: Immerse in Amsterdam's Beauty 阿姆斯特丹美如画 (Part 3/3 of Amsterdam)
Let’s get one thing straight from the get-go. I fell in love in Amsterdam. Not with a person, but with the city itself. It was instantaneous and mutual. Amsterdam was made for me and I was made for Amsterdam. Amsterdam is for everyone – the extroverts, introverts and everyone in between.
Amsterdam is one of my favorite cities in the world. I love its brick buildings, open skyline, rich history, and relaxed, easy going attitude towards life. I love the beauty of the canals and historic homes (as I keep saying over and over again), the friendly nature of the Dutch, the museums, the parks, and the quality of life. I love the international feel of the city, the cafe culture, the art, the exploding entrepreneur scene, and the rise of good beer bars! In short, I love it all.
Bikes are to Amsterdam like wine is to Bordeaux. The city loves bikes, and there are supposedly more bikes than people in Amsterdam. In fact, forget about keeping a lookout for cars — it’s the bikes that will run you over. Seeing Amsterdam and its surroundings from a bike is something I definitely encourage you to do.
Amsterdam is a city tied to the water – it grew around its canals and the taming of the Amstel River. The canals of Amsterdam are incredibly beautiful. Personally, I love sitting by the quiet canals a few streets from the city centre. Because most of Amsterdam’s attractions are within walking distance to the city centre, I love just walking about aimlessly and stumble into one of her jewels.
With its picturesque canal scenes and liberal atmosphere, it's easy to see why this city has been a haven for artists for centuries. In Amsterdam's museums, you'll find both flashy 17th century portraits and cutting-edge 20th century works, while street artists are making the city their canvas.
Although Vincent Van Gogh’s fame didn’t come until after his death, the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam South will make you appreciate all of the aspects of his life. The museum serves as a tribute Van Gogh’s life and work with an incredible collection of paintings, etchings, prints and correspondence.
The Van Gogh Museum is made up of four floors and each floor has a unique focus. There is a massive amount of art to see here – over 200 pieces by Van Gogh alone. But you’ll also find many pieces from Van Gogh’s peers as well. You really need at least two hours to see it all, including the special film on Van Gogh that runs in the extension off of the museum shop.
Quotes from Van Gogh’s correspondences are everywhere.
So much to see, so much to admire, so much to learn. There is certainly a lot more to Vincent van Gogh than “the guy who cut his ear off”! Contrary to popular belief, Van Gogh was not born with artistic talent. He had to attend art school, study, and learn from others to cultivate his talent. By experimenting with different painting techniques, he developed his own distinctive swirling brushstroke seen in many of his most famous works. Color was of utmost importance in his paintings because it was his form of personal expression.
Van Gogh’s paintings are among the most expensive ever sold, rivaling those of Pablo Picasso. A few have sold for upwards of $100 million! He certainly had his share of troubles, but instead of letting them hold him back, he used them as fuel to create hundreds of truly magnificent works of art. If you’re looking for Starry Night, arguably Van Gogh’s most famous painting, you won’t find it here. It is displayed in the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.
I was very happy to discover that cameras are allowed in the museum, although photos of some works are not allowed even with the flash turned off.
This huge Rijksmuseum national museum is the pride of Amsterdam, home to one of the best collections of art in the world. More than 8,000 pieces grace the walls and span 800 years of history. The building consists of two symmetrical wings, each with a central atrium. A steep roof towers above the rest of the building, giving it a grand, palace-like quality. Inside, a large modern renovation blends old and new, with the restored atriums boasting large, abstract chandeliers that span the entire space.
荷兰国立博物馆坐落在绿意融融的花园之中，建筑外观十分典雅，内藏5,000多幅横跨荷兰800多年艺术史的绘画和收藏品。这是不仅只有绘画作品 - 国立博物馆还收藏了一系列雕塑作品，有服饰和武器的展览，是您前所未见的展品最为丰富的藏馆之一。
I spent hours exploring artwork, sculptures, and other historical objects. Dutch painter Rembrandt's The Night Watch is one of the top highlights on a trip to the Rijksmuseum. I even found a hidden library in the back of the museum! This is certainly one of the largest museums I have visited in Europe.
Widely associated with the Netherlands, the tulip has long held a fascination in the minds of artists, designers and filmmakers alike. Why not take a visit to the small private museum that keeps the secrets of this deceptively simple flower? You may be surprised to learn that it’s not actually native to the Netherlands, but was first discovered growing wild in Turkey and subsequently imported. If the term ‘tulip mania’ is familiar to you, the museum also has multimedia presentations detailing the history of the biggest investment bubble before bitcoin. With its fun and colorful exhibits, the museum is also a draw for children.
Visits can last anything from 30 minutes to an hour, depending on how deeply you wish to explore. To whet your appetite further, they sell beautiful fresh specimens of tulips in the gift shop, and bulbs certifiable for the USA. If live items are not your cup of tea, there are also many unique tulip-themed souvenirs not sold elsewhere. Overall, the Tulip Museum is a quaint experience truly characteristic of the Dutch atmosphere.
I visited a free Cheese Museum (located just next to the Tulip Museum), which is more like a free cheese tasting experience! Here, one can experience the history of cheese-making and taste the distinctive flavor of the best cheese in Holland. While there is an assortment of cheese to choose from, the two must-taste varieties here are Gouda Cheese and the Old Goat Cheese. Other than cheese-tasting, this museum also has an exclusive section where one can learn the art of cheese making. Its products can also be ordered online with shipping available worldwide. A one of a kind experience, this museum needs to be on your must-visit list.
There are so many things to do in Amsterdam that it deserves more than just the few days most travelers give it. This is one of the cultural capitals of the world. Amsterdam is a treasure hunt. There is so much to see, to experience, to fall in love with!
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