After we got settled in to our hotel room in Amsterdam and rested a bit, we decided to go get in a little afternoon sight-seeing. In Amsterdam on of the absolute must-do activities is the canal boat tour of the city. Amsterdam has canals everywhere and they are all laid out like spokes of a wheel with the hub being the central train station. The canal tour boats are long, narrow, and low, so they will fit under the bridges and down the narrower canals. Maneuvering one of those long narrow boats through the canals and making ninety degree turns with only a few feet to spare took some rather impressive boat handling skills, even using the bow-thrusters.
Canal cruise boats in the harbor next to the train station. Out the window of the tour boat. Impressive buildings, many hundreds of years old. We saw boats of all sizes and descriptions cruising the canals. At times there was a lot of canal traffic. A three story parking garage for bicycles. The weather was nice, so the top was open. Most of the canals are only three to six feet deep, so everything must be very shallow draft. The picture doesn't do justice to the beauty of this boat. There were lots of canal cruise boats everywhere.
If you ever get to Amsterdam, make sure you take one of the canal boat tours. It's one of the best ways to get a feel for the place. Another is to just get out and wander around on foot. We did some of that. too, and I'll have pictures of the street scenes in the next post.
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