Hello Amsterdam: Cheese, wooden shoes, bikes & boats

We started our day on Sunday with breakfast at the hotel, which was an American breakfast with eggs, bacon, hashbrowns and most other things you would expect.

After breakfast, we boarded the bus to go to the Dutch countryside. There we learned how they would traditionally make cheese. We got to sample a lot of them and the best one was a cheese with herbs in my opinion. We could have bought some and the cheese lasts 2 months not in the fridge, but it was pretty heavy and I wasn’t sure if it would make it home.

Lots of cheese

Lots of cheese

Sampling cheese, so good!

Sampling cheese, so good!

We then went next door to see how wooden shoes are made. The guide told us how they were made traditionally and how they are made now with machines. After a demonstration, we browsed the gift shop and headed out.

Wooden shoes in Amsterdam

Wooden shoes in Amsterdam

Watching wooden shoes being made

Watching wooden shoes being made

Big wooden shoes

Big wooden shoes

Next we drove to the town of Edam for a bike ride through the countryside. Unfortunately the weather was not in our favor and it was cloudy and about 50 degrees. It seems like everyone on the trip had not planned for cold weather and that seems to be most of the weather we have gotten (get us to the sunshine in Italy!)

Even with the clouds, the bike ride was wonderful. We even got to the coast and could see the ocean. It was very cute and a great change of pace from a the sitting we have been doing.

Getting ready to bike!

Getting ready to bike!

Biking through the Dutch countryside!

Biking through the Dutch countryside!

Biking through the Dutch countryside!

Biking through the Dutch countryside!

Made it to the coast!

Made it to the coast!

We stopped at a giant windmill on our bike ride.

We stopped at a giant windmill on our bike ride.

Next we got back on the bus and went to Volendam, a fishing village. We had a quick lunch and even though I should have gotten sea food, the weather gave me an intense craving for grilled cheese and tomato soup so I got a panini and soup.

I had to get some grilled cheese and tomato soup!

I had to get some grilled cheese and tomato soup!

From there, we headed back to the city and had free time. We were basically exhausted so we decided to head back to the hotel for a break. Afterwards, we visited the I Amsterdam sign before meeting up with the group for an Indonesian dinner. It was good to try something different, but I don’t think I would get it on my own.

I Amsterdam sign

I Amsterdam sign

Indonesian dinner

Indonesian dinner

After dinner, we took a boat through the canals and river. The canal ride was long so we kept ourselves entertained by pointing out the absurdities of living in a boat house (which is apparently very common) and making jokes about the driver who literally introduced himself and said “I am going to drive this boat” before departing.

Boat ride through the canals

Boat ride through the canals

Boat ride through the canals

Boat ride through the canals

We wrapped up the night by having drinks with some of the group at the bar at the hotel. But since we were so tired and knew we had to be up early, we went to bed really early.

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