Anytime is a good time to discover – or rediscover – Holland. Autumn in the Netherlands seems to have a special energy, perhaps because the residents have returned from summer vacations, the weather is not quite as warm and the young ones are back in school. With the season comes a long list of cultural events and festivals, all bringing inhabitants and visitors together for fun and arts. One of the best ways to see Amsterdam in the fall is via an old tram line, the #2.
First the festivals! The Free Fringe Festival, in early September, highlights music, theatre, film and video games, all free of charge to attend. The International Broadcasting Convention showcases the latest technology, content management and trends from around the broadcasting world. Open Monument Days (Open Monumentendag) sees historical buildings and other locations usually not open to the public open for visits in mid-September. (We’ve written about it before – you can see old farm houses, canal houses, factories, and plenty more.)
National Geographic has ruled that this tram ride is one of the best tram rides in the world! Why you ask? Well, for one, you can see and visit some of the greatest sites to be found in Amsterdam from this tram. Grab the #2 in an outlying area and a few stops in, you’ll arrive at a cultural center known as Museumplein. Here is the Van Gogh Museum, the Rijksmuseum and the Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, all located within walking distance of each other.
Stay (or jump back) on the tram, and the next stop takes you to Leidseplein. This square is a mecca for nightlife in the city. Two notable buildings, architecturally speaking, are found here: a 125-year-old theatre in neo-Renaissance style and home to the National Ballet and Opera, and the American Hotel with its distinct Art Nouveau style. Stay on the tram a few more stops and visit the Royal Palace. Further along, visit the famous floating flower market, where all the merchandise is on barges floating on the Singel canal. The tram line ends at the main railway station, Centraal Station. A tram ride only costs a few Euros, but get a day ticket for 7.50 Euros and hop on and off at your whim.
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