From Nancy, France we hopped a Eurolines Bus direct to Amsterdam, Netherlands. Thankfully, this bus ride was nothing like our previous overnight bus experience from Panama City to Bocas del Torro, which we now refer to as the “Harry Potter night bus.” The Eurolines bus transited during the day, departed Nancy at 7:00am, for a 9-hour ride to Amsterdam. We arrived near a metro station, and took the metro into the center of Amsterdam where our accommodations awaited. Call us crazy, but during our two-days in Amsterdam while awaiting our flight (extra time had been planned in case there were any bus break-downs) we booked a room aboard the MPS Noorderzon. Our hostess, Ursula, was very welcoming and provided great information about the city. The MPS Noorderzon was an excellent location for city touring and was very clean and comfortable. There was so much to see and do in Amsterdam! We began straight away that night with one of Ursula’s recommendations, the Brouwerij’t IJ, where I was delighted to drink some real beer! We strolled the streets and marveled at the canals, while dodging bicycles. There were so many bicycles; they had their own paths, traffic lights, and parking areas. At the Red Light District, we did a lot of window shopping! The following day, we let loose in the streets of Amsterdam. We began with a nice, panoramic view of the city from atop the Science Center NEMO building which was just a short walk from MPS Noorderzon.Continued along our way, through Rembrandt Square. This was a fabulous spot of people-watching, because tourists would select a statue with which to strike a pose for photos. Popular statues were well worn, their often touched parts were shiny gold. At the flower market, we found more flower varieties than we knew existed!
The Rijksmuseum was quite a sight! But the bustling park behind the building was most entertaining on a sunny afternoon. At the park behind the Rijksmuseum, we discovered a most charming display of artistically decorated little rabbits. This is Miffy, a popular children’s book character who was on display to celebrate her 60th birthday! This little rabbit was created in 1955 by Dutch artist, Dick Bruna. Miffy’s 32 children’s stories continue to maintain a strong following.