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Phespirit goes to the Netherlands
Amsterdam     February 2001

AROUND THE NETHERLANDS

Map of the Netherlands

1 Amsterdam

Considering the city is known for its canals rather than its streets, Phespirit did an awful lot of walking around Amsterdam. Not a bad thing, really, as it is mostly picturesque.

Distances to be covered were partly due to Phespirit's hotel being a tad remote from the centre, but mostly it was indicative of there being a wide range of interesting places that may be visited.

To give his feet a rest, Phespirit treated himself to a one day pass on the Canal Bus. He can recommend this as an entirely pleasing and leisurely way to get around.

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2 Den Haag

The Mauritshuis gallery is the star attraction in Den Haag. It is not the largest/greatest collection in the world, or even in Holland, but it is compact and exquisitely beautiful, and must surely boast the highest ratio of quality art per square metre of anywhere.

Vermeer's 'Girl with a pearl earring' is the major attraction. Indeed, Phespirit bought not only the T-shirt but also the mousemat.

Also superb: a temporary exhibition of works by Gerrit Dou.

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3 Delft

From Amsterdam, Phespirit visited each of Rotterdam, Delft and Den Haag by train. Of the three, Delft is by far the most attactive, satisfying the tourist's urge to experience their imagined reality of a traditional Flemish town.

The new and old churches, along with the town hall, are the stars of the show.

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4 Rotterdam

"In 2001, Rotterdam will be presenting itself as Cultural Capital of Europe" says the little booklet. Well, if so it was lost on Phespirit. Just a bit too grey on an overcast day - a hotch-potch of post-war reconstruction.

Phespirit ascended the Euromast tower to take a panoramic view of the city, confirming his early impressions from ground-level.

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  1. Amsterdam
  2. Den Haag
  3. Delft
  4. Rotterdam
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Amsterdam Den Haag Delft Rotterdam