Our plan to have a relaxed first night clearly didn’t go to plan. I woke up the next morning not feeling too bad, just exhausted from lack of sleep, Steph was another story entirely and looked like she was lucky to be alive. Our hostel included breakfast and we just made it in time for the last 30 minutes. It seems most of the hostel had similar intentions as there was a massive queue that took about 20 minutes till we actually managed to reach the front to asses the situation. Breakfast options were incredibly basic, just some cold meats and cheese bread buns or toast, crackers, a piece of fruit or three choices of cereal. While it was very simple there were no complaints from me as I suddenly remember the thing I had loved about Amsterdam as a child. That one of their common breakfasts was Nutella on toast with chocolate sprinkles. While Steph was struggling to eat anything more than a piece of fruit I was happily enjoying my third slice of toast. After breakfast, we were forced to go on a bit of an adventure looking for toothpaste, as both of us had managed to forget it. This meant we had a lovely morning walking through most of Vondelpark, which is truly beautiful and I would really recommend visiting. It also meant we explored some of the more residential areas in Amsterdam and stumbled on to this beautiful church.
As the weather was a little better today we decided to continue with our plan to visit Artis Zoo. It was about a 35-minute walk from our hostel so decided to set off walking rather than get the tram. On the way we passed one of the most photographed spots in Amsterdam the Reguliersgracht, also known as the seven bridges of Amsterdam, it is a viewpoint from which you can see seven bridges at once.
The walk was beautiful and while we did have to take a slight detour as there was a protest happening on the bridge outside of the opera house which forced us to take another bridge ad walk past Amsterdam university campus which was just stunning.
We finally arrived at Artis zoo which is one of the oldest in Europe, it also has a huge aquarium and planetarium. Tickets are € 22.00 on the website but can change in busy periods. I would really recommend a visit to this amazing zoo it’s huge and takes almost a full day to walk around, the animals all seem genuinely happy in their habitats.
It was even better walking around with Steph as it was like having a personal tour guide for random animals facts including the strange shape of a ducks penis.
My favourite part was the monkey and butterfly houses. In the monkey house, you can walk through while the monkeys swing freely around the room just make sure they don’t steal anything!
The zoo also has beautiful gardens and something new and exciting around every corner.
I would really plan to spend an entire day there as there really is just so much to see and do we didn’t even make it the entire way around. After a good few hours, we stopped at the penguin enclosure to sit and relax, just as the sun came out to warm us up. After an exhausting day both yesterday and today we must have ended up falling asleep. The next thing I knew a tour guide and group of tourists were asking us questions in Dutch when we continued to look confused they switched to English. Asking us if we were okay we tried to explain we were just tired but that resulted in them all laughing at us like falling asleep in a zoo isn’t a perfectly normal thing to do. We left pretty quickly after that and is now on a list of my embarrassing life moments.
While the food in Amsterdam is all tempting and delicious it’s also very expensive, the further you go away from the city centre you go the cheaper the food gets. There are some lovely cafes and pubs around the zoo area. We settled on a place called Cafe koose, sadly the kitchen was closing so we were limited on what to order I still had a nice veggie burger.
Heading back to the hostel we had just enough time to fit in a nap before we had to get ready for the bar crawl.
After a bit of research we decide to do the ultimate party Leidseplein pub crawl, it seemed a bit expensive at 20 euros but included free drinks in all 6 bars.
In terms of bar crawls it was fairly standard there were lots of friendly tourist and the bars were all pretty good, my only downside was that it ended in another bar and not a club. Other than that if you’re looking for a bar crawl I would recommend this.