Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Amsterdam and The Muiderslot

On Saturday we welcomed Laura's mom Pam and her boyfriend, Tony, to the Netherlands. We picked them up at Schiphol airport early that morning and headed into Amsterdam for some brief sightseeing. We walked the usual path from Central Station, past Dam Square, down Kalverstraat and through the Begjinhof, then onto the Bloemenmarkt (Flower Market). We also walked out to the Albert Cuypmarkt, Amsterdam's busiest market, which took us briefly by the Heineken Experience. You can see our route below, and if you view the larger map, you can use Google's street view to virtually walk parts of it; just drag the little orange guy in the upper left corner onto the route. (Unfortunately, the best pedestrian parts, along Kalverstraat and the Bloemenmarkt, don't currently have street views.)

View Larger Map

The main event of the day, though, was our trip to nearby Muiden to see The Muiderslot (Muiden Castle). The castle is situated on what used to be the main route from Amsterdam to Utrecht on the River Vecht. The castle as it is today was built on the remains of a previous fortress in the year 1370. There are gardens on the castle grounds and the open area inside the castle walls provides a good place for all the children, dressed in their knight costumes, to see the frequent falconry show. We saw part of a show, in which the falconer instructed her falcon to dive bomb a group of children in near-miss fashion.

We briefly toured the castle interior, which is restored with 17th century furniture. Our English tour, unfortunately, turned to Dutch when a large number of Dutch children joined the group... so I can't really tell you anything else about the interior of the castle other than, "It looked old."

On the way back to the bus stop from the castle, we stopped for an ice cream cone in downtown Muiden and watched boats navigate through the lock system there. Then it was off to Utrecht for more adventure!

The rest of the castle pictures can be found here.

Posted by Matt

No comments: