Friday, July 6, 2012

Utrecht and Amsterdam Part I

The Netherlands in general was likely my favourite spot on our Eurotrip  - and no, not for the reasons you would think. We went into Amsterdam most days and a few nights, but we actually stayed in Utrecht, a small town about 20 minutes outside of the city. Not gonna lie, at first I was slightly disappointed that we weren't staying right in the middle of Amsterdam with all the action - my sister's friend was on exchange in Utrecht, so we decided to hotel there instead. But after 4 days here, I couldn't have been happier! Not only is it the most beautiful, quaint little town but there were TONS of shops/stores/restaurants/bars lining the streets. And although Amsterdam was a lot cleaner/nicer than I anticipated, Utrecht didn't give off that major tourist vibe and wasn't so rammed with people. We stayed at the Grand Hotel Karel V, right across from the train station that takes you into Amsterdam and it was gorgeous. While we did eat out a bunch, our hotel had an amazing breakfast buffet and restaurant on-site, The Louisa Brasserie, which was actually an old military kitchen used during the war. The Netherlands aren't really known for their food, but it's hard not to enjoy a meal when you're sipping an ice-cold pint on a patio overlooking the canal. 

Patio at the Grand Hotel Karel V
Individually packaged granola and muesli for breakfast..!!!!
..Although sometimes I just stuck with the basics.
Fish dish at Louisa Brasserie
Sliced beef with potatoes and asparagus in a beef broth
Couscous with goat cheese, green beans, in a tangy tomato sauce
Dessert - daily sorbets of strawberry chocolate chip, lemon, and banana
Patios line the canal to prepare for Queen's Day
Advertising food everywhere in Utrecht
If you're planning a trip to Amsterdam, I would recommend taking a stop in Utrecht. And if you're a student- go on exchange here!

Happy Friday! Go outside and enjoy a healthy dose of Vitamin D.


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