They say that the best time to visit the Netherlands is April and May because you get to enjoy the fields of tulips, what Holland is mostly known for, and the capital in its full bloom. But even if you can’t make it during the Spring season, summers in the Netherlands will too leave you in fascination. You’ll be treated to some moody weather most likely, but believe me, nothing can be compared to the beauty that will unfold before your eyes.
Amsterdam is known as the capital of freedom and fun, but once you get out of it, you will immerse in a picturesque scenery of beautiful landscapes that the land has to offer. I can confirm this, but I’d also like to add, on a more subjective note, that to me Amsterdam is a very romantic city.
I believe my personal definition of romance, in this particular case, is a retreat into the natural elements of life. There’s a feeling of coziness and warmth that you get when you walk in the park and you see couples riding their bikes and smiling away, when you sit in one of the myriad small cafés with their own stories to tell, even when you look at the canal houses and their huge, panoramic windows that give you a sense of the people living in, or so at least it makes you wonder.
And the locals, that’s a different story! During these few days of our stay, I got a feeling that these people do know a thing or two about how to enjoy life at the fullest and be who they really are, not faking it for the sake of being socially accepted and liked. The majority of people that make up the local community, and even the foreigners that decide to settle in there, are people with very creative, artistic and inspirational minds. You may stumble upon business owners (which by the way make up a huge community in Amsterdam), and here we could add manufacturers, designers, art directors, bloggers, film makers. Walking the streets you will never know who they are. They don’t show off, they blend in nicely.
But there’s another side to the local culture, the one that is not known to tourists, the one that might sound unreal or even absurd, and these are the only two words that came to my mind when I first heard it from a local friend. Apparently, what tourists see as fun and entertainment and diversity, for over a million of Dutch is rather a mask they put on to hide feelings of solitude and loneliness. A recent study claims that “about 13 percent of the capital’s population is estimated to suffer from severe loneliness”, especially older people, which is why all efforts are put into finding ways to bring people together and out of this miserable state of mind. But who am I to judge a nation’s anxieties, right?!
Leaving aside the negative, the hustle in the city center and the millions of tourists that you will see, just immerse in the spirit of the city! Amsterdam is the place you’d like to go to rediscover or reinvent yourself!
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