Adventures in Amsterdam, Netherlands and Copenhagen, Denmark

2023 HAL World Cruise

Tuesday-Wednesday & Friday, April 18-19 & 21, 2023

We awoke Tuesday morning to find ourselves in the canal leading to the dock in Amsterdam.  This is always a lovely sail-in, as well as a great sail-out upon departure!!!  But OK, we confess!!!  We did not jump out of bed to take photos from the verandah!!!  But we did manage to take a few photos of the cruise terminal, hotel, and unique office buildings just as the ship was pulling up to the dock. 

Our first day in Amsterdam had no commitment other than celebrating Holland America Lines’ 150th Anniversary.  That celebration consisted of after-dinner Champaign, cake, and speeches from management.  What we DID most of that day was munch on French Fries and sip libations at the Movenpick Hotel just down the street from the Passenger Cruise Terminal (where we shopped the pop-up craft market)!!!  The sightseeing did not start until Wednesday when we took a ship’s tour to the Keukenhof Gardens.

The Photos will tell the story:

Here we are; docking in Amsterdam.
Amsterdam has a large and friendly passenger terminal. When we departed the ship later in the day for a little exploration, we found a pop up market set up in the terminal. You betcha, we shopped!!!
We found our way to the near-by Movenpick Hotel where we stopped-in to warm-up and enjoy our usual afternoon French Fries and beer!!!
The Movenpick’s atmosphere was warm and inviting.
The beer was cold…..
… was the wine.
So we ordered a second round and tried some new brands. Birra Moretti got a thumbs up.
And then it was time to head back to the ship for Holland America’s 150th Anniversary party.
Congratulations, HAL, on 150 years of sailing the world!!
The following morning, we motored over to the Keukenhof Gardens. We passed acres and acres of growing fields like this along the way.
And then we arrived at Keukenhof and were wowed by the riot of color across the landscape.
Absolutely gorgeous!!!
Touring the gardens will take as long as you want. There is so much to see. Many different varieties of plants; waterscapes, statuary, and even gift shops scattered around the complex.
…..different varieties of blooms…..
…..and this little corner has it all–statuary, water feature, assorted flowers, gift shop, and even snacks!!!
Some kiosks offer tips on flower arranging.
But mostly, you just amble along and admire the beautiful flowers.
And that is so easy to do!!!
Every bed is as lovely as the last….
…..or the next!!!
And look!!! There’s even wild life!!!
Cute little guys!!!
We had a wonderful day!!!
And then we drove back to the city.
We set sail for Copenhagen.
But first, we will navigate the canals to the sea.
The Amsterdam canal system began in 1613 for transport, defense, and water management. The Dutch have a great deal of experience in handling water issues!!! They’ve been draining and rerouting water for centuries!!!
The IJ is the primary river in Amsterdam. It flows to the North Sea and exits at Ijmuiden. Interestingly, many cruises now depart from the Ijmuiden cruise port.
But Amsterdam remains the largest cruise port in the Netherlands. Ahh, here you see the last canal from the mainland to the North Sea.
We will leave the canal and enter the North Sea.
And now, we are on our way to Copenhagen, Denmark.

And then we arrived in Copenhagen.

Originally a Viking fishing village in the 10th century, Copenhagen became the capital of Denmark in the early 15th century.  The East India Trading Company was established in 1616 to foster international trade.  Then, over the next few centuries, there was political rebellion, a plague, a devastating fire, and attacks by the British.  Finally in the 19th century, Copenhagen experienced a period of redevelopment during the Danish Golden Age.  Business flourished, the population grew, cultural institutions were founded.  In 2020, Copenhagen and Malmo, Sweden were connected by the Oresund Bridge.  As a result, Copenhagen has become the center of a much larger metropolitan area spanning both nations.

And here are the photos:

Once again, we found ourselves docked in a cargo area. Fortunately, HAL provided a shuttle that would take us to to the Langelinie port area where we have docked in the past.
But in an indulgence of “letting off steam” we will voice our disappointment in Holland America Lines for inconveniencing their passengers with the hazards requiring safety-precautions in these ports where foot traffic is problematic.
Enough of that!!! We took the shuttle and spent about half an hour getting to where we should have begun!!!
And there she is—the MS Zuiderdam docked across the way from the convenient Langelinie Port.
And this is such a lovely port area!!! There is a park, shops, restaurants, a small boat harbor with marine services, even a seaplane base!!!
We found a grocery with wine and a deli bar…..
…..lots of wine…..
…..beautiful food baskets..
The park is full of statuary…..
…..this is a memorial to the Battle of Koge Bay 1710.
Homage to Princess Marie
And then there’s the Little Mermaid. The fairy tale written by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen was published in 1837. The story follows the journey of a young mermaid willing to die for a human soul. The statue is by Edvard Erikson and sits at the Langelinie Promenade.
The Langelinie Small Boat Harbor is nearby.
And yes! There is now a float plane operation!!! Please note the tents: a festival is coming for the weekend. We will miss it; but it sure does look like a fun event!!!
As the afternoon wore on, we stopped for lunch at the Seaside Restaurant.
The mussels and beer were really good!!!
And then it was time to head back to the ship.

Next, we will spend several days touring Norway.  The next post will tell you all about Oslo, Kristiansand, Haugesund, Eidfjord, and Bergen.

Come along as the journey continues!!!

3 thoughts on “Adventures in Amsterdam, Netherlands and Copenhagen, Denmark”

  1. How wonderful that you were in Amsterdam during the flower bloom! We missed it on our last trip, but will be back for it someday!


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