If you want to enjoy the true beauty of nature then there can be nothing better in Europe than the Netherlands tour. Once upon a time my uncle gifted me some postcards he brought back as memorabilia from Netherlands. The pictures replicated the beauty of tulips, canals and other monuments that the European nation has to offer, ever since I wanted to visit the ‘Oranje Nation’. When a business trip to Netherlands cropped up, I made up my mind that apart from meeting the client (which would take hardly a few hours) I would spend some more days exploring the beauty of Netherlands. And it was one of the better decisions I made in my life! If you have seen Europe and skipped the Netherlands, then you have truly missed out on a great experience.
As there are so many things to see in Netherlands and I had to return to office soon so I decided quite early that it would be a waste to try and cover the entirety of this country. So, I focused on two biggest and picturesque cities of Netherlands. These cities were Amsterdam and Rotterdam. As my business meeting was in Amsterdam, so my trip started with a view of this city and its attractions.
The Canals of Amsterdam was my first sightseeing experience of Amsterdam. The canal ring area has become an integral part of the Dutch culture. All the canals in the area are unique. I especially enjoyed the Golden Bend or the canal leading from Leidsetraat to Vijzelstraat. There are many beautiful canal houses along this canal way. There is a bridge at the corner of Reguliersgracht and Herengracht which offers a view of fifteen bridges at the same time. As night dawned my boat strolled near the Magere Brug. This is one of the most romantic locations. The lighting at this bridge is very beautiful.
Next day I decided to visit the Rijksmuseum or the National Museum of Holland. This museum contains artifacts from the year 1100-present. It brings forth the history of the Netherlands in front of your eyes. I spent some time going through Rembrandt’s masterpiece “Night Watch” and paintings of other Dutch masters such as Jan Steen, Frans Hals and Vermeer. I liked the Dolls House which dates back to 1676. My next destination was Hermitage. The building is known as Amstelhof and it is situated on the Amstel River. The location is quite picturesque. There are more than three million items exhibited at this museum. Van Gogh Museum was next in line. This museum is dedicated entirely to the works of famous nineteenth century artists Vincent van Gogh. It is the largest collection of works of the master under one roof. I was happy to have viewed van Gogh’s famous works such as “The Sunflowers”, “The Bedroom in Arles” and “The Potato Eaters”, among many others.
After completing Amsterdam sightseeing I laid my focus on another beautiful city, Rotterdam. Rotterdam is better known as an architectural city. It is a port city, shopping city and trendy city too. There are many architectural wonders located in this city but alongside these there are new skyscrapers coming up every year. My first location at Rotterdam was Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. This museum has a collection of more than 14 lac art pieces. Next in line was the Kunsthal which stages 25 new exhibitions for all types of cultural expressions. My Rotterdam tour was cut short. Not because of any mishap, but because I earnestly wanted to pay a visit to Keukenhof Gardens.
Keukenhof Gardens has been used as a shooting location for many movies. It is the world’s largest flower garden. I took a car from Rotterdam and it took me about an hour to get to Lisse (where the garden is situated). I was lucky to have visited the garden in the month of March, when the full aura of flowers can be seen. I was informed by a local guide that there are no less than seven million flower buds planted every year in this garden. I found that the garden possesses not only a rich collection of tulips, but there are daffodils, hyacinths and various other flowers.
This picturesque garden brought down curtains upon my brief Netherlands tour.