Alison Bellarosa

Adventures in Amsterdam

Alison Bellarosa

This past spring, I studied abroad in the Netherlands, a country known for windmills, tulips and its famous capital city. To many, Amsterdam has a certain reputation, but this doesn’t fully capture all that this city offers. My experience was made up of esteemed museums, delicious food and beautiful city streets.

The Netherlands has been an art hub for centuries, and I saw this firsthand when visiting the Van Gogh Museum and the Rijksmuseum, the latter housing an impressive collection of Dutch art through the ages. After touring museums, I always sought out local snacks. My favorites included french fries drizzled with mayonnaise and served in easy-to-carry cones, and stroopwafels—a delicious Dutch treat created by two thin waffle cookies with caramel syrup in between. These quick treats were perfect to eat as I roamed the city.

Aside from the Royal Palace, located in Dam Square, there aren’t many imposing structures or monuments within the capital. Amsterdam is a relatively small city made up of interlocking canals and narrow, lofty buildings. I found a simple pleasure in following the waterways and cutting through colorful side streets, often coupled with corner stands selling sweet-smelling tulips.

Amsterdam was such a lovely city to explore and ended up being one of the highlights from my time abroad. It should be at the top of any traveler’s bucket list.   

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