Our first trip to Europe!

October 29, 2018

It's been quiet from us recently but we have certainly been busy exploring in the caravan! Since our last blog we have spent many weekends away over the summer, including a rally for the RAF Fairford air show with 250+ caravans, exploring the smaller caravan sites in and around Suffolk and our latest adventure to Amsterdam In Holland. This is the first time me and Dan have taken the caravan aboard and we had the company of Dan’s auntie and uncle for the week. We booked the ferry which took us from Harwich to the Hook of Holland. This crossing was 7 hours and cost only £63 each way and this did include our bikes on the roof of course. What a bargain!

 

On arrival to the Netherlands it was an hour’s drive ahead to Camping Zeeburg where we would be staying for the week. However, the weather was pretty miserable on the way to the campsite and it took Dan a lot of concentration to stay on the right side of the road (literally!). But we were smart and had already planned it through; we had purchased ourselves some walkie talkies so we could talk to each other throughout. When we finally arrived to the campsite we were delighted at the buzz and atmosphere it had. This excited us and we just wanted to get out and explore Amsterdam.

 

 

On our first trip into the city we took our bikes; many people we have spoken to said this is a must. I was only about a 20 minute cycle but it was definitely was an experience! Did you know that moped’s and 2 seated mini cars are allowed to ride on the cycle path if they are not wearing a helmet? This place was definitely something different to what we have been used to in the UK. After almost getting run over at least 5 times and dodged through the cycle path traffic, we arrived in Amsterdam.  

 

 

 

There is a lot to do in Amsterdam and we didn’t know where to start. However a nice couple on the site we were staying on recommended that we took a river cruise. This was a personal highlight from our trip abroad; the river boat took us where you wouldn’t see by foot. It took just over an hour and we were educated around the beautiful city’s history. All of the old buildings still have hooks on the tops of the buildings which were originally used to tow the boats. It was a great trip and would recommend it to anyone. It even included a mini bar on board! Amazing.

 After exploring the city in the daytime and just getting an idea of what is about, the night time brought something slightly different. We searched on Trip Advisor and found a local who was offering a night time tour of the famous red light district. The streets of Amsterdam were very vibrant and this tour offered a great insight into the local area and the history behind it. We learnt a lot and spent our whole evening exploring the night life that the city had to offer! But off to bed it was as tomorrow we had plans to explore outside the city. 

 

On our next adventure out in the Netherlands, we decided to take a trip to the quaint village of Zaanse Schans which is home to the oldest windmills in Holland. Here we found a typical Dutch village with shops that sold hundreds of hand-made clogs. Of course I had to try some on as that’s what you do in Holland, right? Dan didn’t try on any on because you have to have quite slim feet to be able to wear them and flower print didn’t suit him. However, we had a great time exploring the culture that this beautiful place had to offer.

After getting the ‘bug’ for exploring typical Dutch culture, we ventured out later on in the week and found the town of Volendam – a small seaside harbour town in the outskirts of Amsterdam. Here you could buy fresh fish caught in the harbour and taste the local cuisine. However one thing we did regret not doing on this trip, is taking our bikes. In Volendam everyone was on their bikes as the ground was so flat and it was such a clear day. There were definitely no moped’s on the cycle path’s in Volendam.

 

 

We did do a lot of exploring in and around the city, but our week also consisted of relaxing around the caravan. We learnt a lot during our time in Holland and met some great people during our stay. We will definitely be going back to Holland in the future as we know there is so much more to offer. However, for the time being we will be exploring more of our home – Britain. Our next trip will be to Yorkshire in November.

 

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