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It was here again, a free space, a period of time consisting of some days within which I did not have to go to a room, sit and listen to someone who had been employed to daily fill me with academic knowledge for a period of three years, during which sometimes I would feel very much like listening and at other times like muting this employee. So I was grateful for this space and when it came, I was glad to embrace it, to make the best of it, to get away for the period and do something memorable.

Being in a small university with many nationalities represented, I had heard about many places to see: Bahamas, Morocco, Paris, Berlin, Malaysia, Mauritius, from those who lived there or had visited. I also heard about Amsterdam-the red light district, its many museums, the canals, the loads of tourists. I had some relatives in the Netherlands so I thought to make the best use of my time visiting.

A lot of the fun places to see in the Netherlands were in Amsterdam, which was not too far from where I stayed. There were other interesting places outside Amsterdam to see which made it tough choosing where to go. If you’re in Amsterdam, beware that there is a variety of beautiful sights and tourist attractions. You will be tempted to see a lot of different things and a part of you may feel like you actually can. This is a possible feat, depending on how long you are spending in the city as well as your budget. The price of museum tickets, boat rides or almost any other attraction are available online, which makes financial planning easy.

I had only a day in Amsterdam. I went to the Anne Frank House and though it seemed like a small building which I would tour in half an hour, it took two hours. This was excluding the thirty minutes I spent on the queue to get in: yes, a lot of tourists visit the house! It was very detailed, labelled rooms, letting you know which room belonged to who and video and audio recordings of some people who had known Anne Frank as well as some parts of Anne Frank’s diary. The use of cameras were not allowed but I saved my ticket stub.

Ticket Stubs

Ticket Stubs

I also took a boat ride that went on the waters of Amsterdam as the tour guide pointed out buildings and areas that were important or had some historic essence. The Amsterdam Light Festival was on at the time, so I saw beautiful art during the tour.

I found Louwman’s Museum when looking for places to see and Corpus was recommended to me. I decided to check them out. These are not in Amsterdam central, but they were definitely worth the ‘detour’ especially as they were on the same route. Louwman’s is an automobile museum, with vehicles from as far back as the early 1900s. It was easy to get around by public transportation, following the directions I got online. It’s a good idea to ask a local to cross check and inform you of a faster route if they know one.

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Ahrens-Fox Fire Engine 1928

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Rolls-Royce ‘Shooting Brake’ 1910

Toyoda AA (First Toyota Passenger Car) 1936

Toyoda AA (First Toyota Passenger Car) 1936

An interesting car from way back

An interesting car from way back

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World’s First 6-Cylinder Engine, 4-Wheel Drive, 4-Wheel Brakes

Corpus is a journey in the human anatomy. It takes you through the experiences in the human body, using real sounds to explain how essential organs work and how some processes are carried out in the body. It was a lovely experience, which I would especially recommend for young children as it is a fun approach to Science/Biology, as well as an insight on how their body works which they will not easily forget. There was a food court and a souvenir shop. Unfortunately, cameras were not allowed here so I have no pictures.

The Royal Delft was another place I had been told about, it is the home of beautiful hand-designed ceramic. I got a few pictures from here:

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I had a good time touring around the Hague and Amsterdam. Please share if you’ve been to any of these places or somewhere else not listed above. It’ll be nice to hear your experience.

*MBW

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