A Travellerspoint blog

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A Cool Adventure

sunny 32 °C

This is a brand new travel blog website (well, new to me, that is) so I hope that it will be as easy to use as the Travelpod site. Here goes, anyway!

Avis and Linda along with our friends, Charles and Pat Bouman leave Calgary on July 11 to fly to Amsterdam. We will be there for 3 days exploring the city, canals, windmills and museums before we embark the Holland America Prinsendam on July 15 for our cruise to Norway, the Polar ice cap, Iceland and Scotland. We will be on the ship for 20 days and fly back from Amsterdam on Aug. 5.

Here is a picture of the Prinsendam at Eidfjord, our first stop in Norway. My friend Debbi took this photo when she took this cruise in 2016.

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It is hot, and hotter here in Calgary so a trip to the cooler climate of the Arctic is very appealing right now. We are looking forward to seeing some amazing sites and having some fabulous experiences.

I don't believe that this website has a notification feature that will alert you each time we post a new entry to this blog so you will need to check the blog website to keep track of us on our journey. I think it will be possible for you to make comments. Thanks for following along with us.

Here is Avis and Linda having a fun time in New Zealand. We are looking forward to having lots more fun experiences on the opposite side of the world.

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http://linfays.travellerspoint.com

Posted by linfays 22:47 Archived in Canada Comments (8)

Amsterdam, Days 1 and 2

Day 1 - We arrived in Amsterdam at about 7:30 am and managed to get to our hotel by about 10 am. We took a train and then a tram from the airport, in the pouring rain. The hotel stored our luggage while we went out to explore, in the pouring rain. We had purchased Hop on Hop off bus tickets so we decided to ride the bus route and get ourselves oriented. It was not that successful as the windows kept fogging up from the rain and we kept falling asleep due to, our jet lag. Back at the hotel we grabbed a 45 min.nap and then did some more exploring.

Our first beer in Amsterdam

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Our hotel is really lovely and close to everything, only about 05 min. from Dam Square.

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More of Dam Square

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Today we took a walking tour of the Jewish Quarter which was very interesting and quite moving. The tour culminated at the location where Ann Frank and her family hid from the Nazis for 2 and 1/2 years. The line up for tickets to see Ann's house was at least 2 hrs long so we decided to pass on trying to see that today. After the walking tour we took a canal tour which was lovely, very relaxing as we glided by several of the canal districts.

The painter Rembrandt lived here in the Jewish Quarter for a period of time. The house with the green door and red shutters was his.

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A Holocaust memorial to the 95,000 Jews who were sent from Amsterdam to German camps in WW II

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The house where Ann Frank was imprisoned

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These brass plaques were placed here by a German artist to memorialize Jewish citizens who were relocated from this location to German camps. We saw them at various locations in the Jewish Quarter

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On the canal tour

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Tomorrow we are off on another tour with an early start so I will post this and get to bed!

Posted by linfays 15:35 Comments (7)

Amsterdam, Day 3

Actually out of Amsterdam

all seasons in one day 19 °C

Today we were able to get out to the countryside of the Netherlands to view some lovely scenery and charming villages. Our first stop was the village of Zaanse Schans which is known for its collection of historic windmills and buildings. We toured a windmill that sawed lumber and another that ground spices. The Netherlands used to have 30,000 windmills but now there are only 1000 left so we felt fortunate to see so many in one place. Unfortunately we didn't have time to visit any of the houses in the historic village. There is barely time to take a picture and visit the washroom on these tours, they really keep you moving.
We visited this windmill that saws lumber
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Windmill action shot!

Our next stop was the beautiful village of Volendam, an historic fishing village. Here we atarted with a 20 min. visit to the museum where we saw several life-size dioramas depicting the Dutch way of life through history. From there we walked through town to the harbour. It was a beautiful walk but no time to stop for pictures. A t the harbour we went to a cheese factory where we saw a quick demonstration of cheese making and then had time to taste and shop. Now I am wondering how I am going to get all this cheese in my luggage! From there we went to a great little restaurant for the Dutch version of fish and chips for lunch.
As if we hadn't eaten enough, the next stop was a bakery where they showed us how to make a stroopwaffle which is a delicious waffle cookie with caramel filling. Again time for more shopping. More room in my luggage now needed!
It was a short drive from Volendam back to Amsterdam but a long walk from our drop off point back to the hotel. We fortified ourselves with a beer at a pub along the way.
Tonight we toured the red light district and then went to a nice Indonesian restaurant for dinner. Tomorrow we leave Amsterdam and board the Prinsendam for our cruise. It's been a fun time once we learned to watch out for the "killer bikes". Those bicycle riders think they own the roads and everyone has to get out of their way.

Here are some more pictures

Windmill scenery shot
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More scenery
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In Volendam

picturesque Volendam
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another view of Volendam
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Enjoying a refreshment
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Posted by linfays 15:26 Archived in Netherlands Comments (2)

At sea

We are aboard the MS Prinsendam sailing on the North Sea towards Norway. We arrived about 12:30 yesterday, had a quick lunch and then spent time familiarizing ourselves with all the features of the ship. We have a great cabin in a very good location, on the same deck as the front office, the Exploration Cafe, the show theatre, the shops and the casino. Right outside our cabin door are steps down to the deck we use for walking and the location of the dining rooms. We are at the back of the ship on the port side, right on the "corner" so we have a huge verandah, big enough to hold 2 lounge chairs, 2 arm chairs, 2 ottomans and a small table. We will definitely be using that area as often as possible.
To step back a day or so, you asked for details on the red light district in Amsterdam. It is an area filled with sex shops, porn shows and store fronts highlighted with red lights that indicate sex for sale. The skimpily clad prostitutes sit on stools in the windows advertising themselves. We were in the area fairly early so didn't see a lot of them. It is as sleazy as it sounds but is heavily patrolled by police so seemed fairly safe. Plus we had Charles to protect us!

In the Red Light district
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I no longer have free wifi. We have a satellite connection which is quite pricey and quite slow. I am not sure how long it is going to take to upload photos so I will be conservative for this entry.
Thanks for your comments. We do enjoy them.

Our verandah

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Posted by linfays 08:55 Comments (6)

Eidfjord, Norway

10 °C

We had a great day in Eidfjord, Norway despite unsettled weather and a high of only about 10. The Norwegians have a saying, "there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing". We took that to heart and wore lots of layers and carried umbrellas so we managed just fine. We spent most of the day outside walking and hiking in the countryside around beautiful Hardanger Fjord and browsing the town of Eidfjord (pop. 950) which is very picturesque and charming.
Here is the photographic journal of our day.

At the start of our hike up the mountain behind Eidfjord. That is the Prinsendam in the background. Note our neat, tidy hair styles.

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Hiking through the Norwegian woods with a view of a fossen (waterfall) in the background

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We stopped to build a little stone sculpture

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Here is the result

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Further on we stopped to see an Iron Age Viking burial mound

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We passed through some lovely farms on our walk

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At a viewpoint looking over the fjord. Note the hair, not so tidy anymore after wind and rain along the way

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There were wildflowers everywhere

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The stone church in Eidfjord. It was built in 1309 and has walls that are 5 ft. thick.

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Across from the church we saw this

Tomorrow we are in Bergen which Avis and Linda have visited before. This time we have plans to see it in a totally different way. Stay tuned!

Posted by linfays 13:59 Archived in Norway Comments (3)

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