This is the second of two posts about my day of traveling and first (partial) day in Amsterdam. First, here are some cute pictures of the Netherlands from the air:
I got to the StayOkay Vondelpark by taking the Conexxion 197 from Schipol. I was so tired I almost fell asleep on the bus, but luckily I got off at the right stop! The hostel is on a tiny lane right next to Vondelpark, which is the largest park in Holland.
I spent much of the afternoon sorting out my stuff, taking a shower, and napping. I’ve hardly ever been so tired! I was woken up by a huge clap of thunder and pouring rain. At that point I was starving (the last real meal I had had was at home, the day before), so I decided to go find food. With the help of the Lonely Planet Amsterdam guidebook, I decided to go to Hap Hmm, which serves traditional Dutch food at a super affordable price. It was great – perfect comfort food after several flights. I had the vegetarian option, which was mashed potatoes, peas, carrots, brussel sprouts, and something breaded that looked like chicken, but turned out to be a cheese and tomato combo that was delicious! I was pleasantly surprised by how veg-friendly it was. And of course, I enjoyed a delicious Hoegaarden.
After that I felt like walking off all the food, so I meandered through tiny streets, admiring the bikes, houses, and flowers…
Walking through the drizzle was pretty magical. I explored the roads around Vondelpark, then stumbled upon this beautiful church.
The park was just on the other side of the church, so I decided to go in.
I thought it would be easy to find StayOkay because it’s right next to the park, but I got lost somehow… I think I walked in circles around Vondelpark and the surrounding streets for two+ hours. It was very relaxing at first, but as it began to get dark, I asked some nice Dutch folks for directions, and they helped me figure out how to get back to Zandpad. It turned out that it would have been really easy to get to StayOkay from where I entered Vondelpark near the church, so I’m not even sure how I missed it in the first place…
So I got lost on my first day, and it was pretty great. This is the writing outside my room at StayOkay. I guess I already followed the advice!