velvet | Amsterdam

Plane views: Amstel River, Amsterdam

The name Amsterdam originates from the earliest settlement along the Amstel River where a dam was built. Amstel + dam = Amstellerdam, which eventually became Amsterdam. Nowadays, the river is lined by stately mansions, parks and leafy neighbourhoods. On a recent flight back to Amsterdam, I was treated to views of the Amstel River and […]

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The intersection of the Keizersgracht and Leidsegracht.

‘The One Thing’ in Amsterdam

I love trying to pinpoint ‘The One Thing’ that sums up the thrill of travel. Travelling around the world allows me to consider fresh ideas and meet people with experiences totally removed from my own. When that ‘One Thing’ is completely new, it becomes a memory that can define an entire trip. Sometimes ‘The One […]

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The intersection of the Keizersgracht and Leidsegracht.

The canals of Amsterdam: a window into the city

My hometown, Amsterdam, with its rings of canals, historic monuments, world-class museums and vibrant nightlife is one of the most visited cities in the world. Amsterdam’s world famous canals offer visitors a unique window into the history of the city and the lifestyle of its inhabitants. In the 17th century, Amsterdam was one of the […]

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Keukenhof garden, Holland

An afternoon in the Keukenhof

The Keukenhof is perhaps the Netherlands’ most popular tourist attraction in the spring. Literally translated, Keukenhof means ‘kitchen garden’, and is located near the town of Lisse, about a half-hour drive southwest of Amsterdam, in the heart of one of the country’s major flower-growing regions. The Keukenhof is the world’s largest flower garden and every […]

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Picture perfect Amsterdam

Amsterdam, with its rings of canals and many historic monuments, is arguably one of the most picturesque cities in the world. I’ve listed below eight beautiful spots in Amsterdam for visitors and photography enthusiasts. The city centre is very compact, making it very easy to explore by foot. 1. The Amstel River There are many […]

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Enchanting spots: Amsterdam

I recently wrote an article on “The Most Impressive Tourist Attractions” and Sara, one of my readers, included a comment describing how she felt when she visited the Victoria Falls – it was a magical experience. Her honest, beautifully-worded comment got me thinking about all those enchanting places around the world that I’ve visited and […]

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Houseboats in Amsterdam

One of the things I love about my hometown is the abundance of water – there’s the Amstel River, the Ij-harbour and the many, many miles of canals that crisscross the city centre. If the canals freeze in the winter, hordes of locals grab the opportunity to go ice-skating through the city’s splendid historic centre […]

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