Many times people often search for an ideal spot for vacationing. Families want to find an area that offers various activities that can range from a nice dinner out to a walk in the park and fun night life. With a rich cultural atmosphere and history, Amsterdam offers a great variety of interests on various topics; in a mild climate and a center for night life and culture for hundreds of years, it is no wonder that millions of visitors flock to the capital each year.
Located in the province North Holland in western Netherlands, just 2 meters below sea level, Amsterdam boasts a very enjoyable climate throughout the summer with a cool wind blowing off the North Sea. The average high in the summer is only 71.8 °F with only an average of 2.5 days reaching 86 °F or higher. In the winter, those tourists who enjoy imagining what the North Pole may feel like would enjoy the chilly temperatures. In these winter months, typically October through March, with January being the coldest, the days are damp and cold due to little rainfall.
Amsterdam is intensely urbanized, the population being 800,000 within the city. 12% of the city area, 136.3 miles, is made up of natural reserves and parks. The rest of the city is densly populated between the many canals and historical monuments. The large numbers of canals running through the streets have deemed Amsterdam the “Venice of the North”. Although many canals have existed over the years, many have been paved over and turned into streets. Now a tourist attraction, the canals originally served the purposes of defense, transportation, and water management for the city’s inhabitants.
The city’s buildings, although seemingly bland Dutch Expressionism, show a great contrast from the cold of the materials to the warm tones of the bricks themselves, making the structures seem bold and inviting. Throughout the city beautiful homes of merchants can be found along with various other styles ranging from neo-gothic, baroque, and Jugendstil, also known as Art Nouveau. A collective of styles prior to this can be found at the old city center.
Alongside these architectural marvels are many parks and open spaces. The largest park in the city, Vondelpark, has an open air theater, playground, and several food facilities. Another park, Amsterdamse Bos (Amsterdam Forest) is approximately three times the size of Central park. Here is where the Rieker windmill resides; this particular windmill dates back to 1636. The city has four beaches, the Nemo Beach, Citybeach "Het stenen hoofd" (Silodam), Blijburg, and one in Amsterdam-Noord. In the center of the city, you can find the oldest zoo of Holland. With four different areas, the zoo, planetarium, botanical gardens, the zoological and geological museum, an all day trip is nearly expected. The zoo itself host a variety of animals from around the world and a canal aquarium show that showcases the animals that roam the canals of Amsterdam. In the planetarium the visitors can...