sexta-feira, 13 de setembro de 2019

Amsterdam - Culture and charm through the canals




A minimum stay of 2/3 days is advised. The choice of accommodation is diverse and for all tastes and scholarships. Transport is frequent and functional.

Amsterdam is indescribable, has a personality of its own. The architecture is stunning ranging from Gothic to Renaissance.
We are soon also facing the romanticism of the canals and we are surprised by different situations such as watching out of their dwelling houses in the boat parked at your doorstep!


Canal travel by boat is a must and at Central Station you can choose what you want to do! There are circuits for all tastes, the offer is very varied, from routes with meals included, animation or simple routes through the canals.



The flat streets invite you to ride a bike and that's what most Dutch do! Bicycles for one or more people, family bikes, carrying several children or animals, with the naturalness of those who choose to preserve the environment and exercise!
It's interesting to see the huge car parks with hundreds and hundreds of bicycles next to the bus and train stations!

 If you are a Van Gogh admirer I recommend a day to visit the museum. It is impressive the painter's journey and his quest to portray in such a characteristic way the world around him. We can admire one of his most famous paintings, the sunflowers such as the extensive fields of wheat or the varied self-portraits that are reported to be due to the painter's lack of financial capacity to pay for models. The "Potato Eaters" painting portraying the farmers, the roughness of the calloused hands by the hard work of the fields impresses with the realism it conveys.



Van Gogh shortly before his death offered a painting, depicting the almond trees in bloom, to his brother Theo at the time of the birth of his son Vicent. It was this, his nephew Vicent who would later found the Van Gogh museum in honor of his uncle.


You can also visit the famous Rijksmuseum, an imposing building with the most classic Dutch works, with the greatest exponent of paintings by artist Rembrandt.

When traveling it is necessary to make choices. Many museums deserve to be visited. A must see is the visit to the Anne Frank house museum, the attic and the closet where the family was hiding transport us to their sad and well-known life story.


To regain strength just follow the smell, everywhere, of the famous Dutch croquettes scattered throughout the city, there are for all tastes, meat, shrimp or vegetarians but always freshly fried! Always accompanied by traditional onion fries and curries and mayonnaise. A delicious specialty.


Scattered around the city there are also many cheese shops where you can taste and buy the famous Dutch cheeses. Gouda and Edam are the best known and there is a wide variety of flavors as a multitude of spices, nuts and other products are added to the delight of cheese lovers. This product is important for the economy of the Netherlands as it is shipped worldwide.


Another attraction is Bloemenmarkt, the only floating flower market in the world. If Holland reminds us of flowers, it is the market that people will buy them to beautify their homes and gardens. Tulips are the most popular purchase. Bulbs and seeds can also be purchased for planting.

The visit to the red neighborhood satisfies curiosity and raises many questions. Mature and young women in lit shop windows dressed sensual or almost naked, looking natural ...
Also coffeeshops are a reality, with which most people live with an apparent naturalness! Cannabis is widely consumed here, displacing many onlookers here.

Photos: Natacha Brigham

terça-feira, 27 de agosto de 2019

Kasteel de Haar - Take a walk through history



We start the tour with a visit to the largest castle in the Netherlands, the Kasteel de Haar, situated near the city of Utrecht. It is immaculately preserved and was rebuilt by the famous Dutch architect Pierre Cuypers in the early twentieth century in a neo-Gothic style. Brown and red highlight their shapes and contours.




The well-kept gardens, surrounded by lakes and small nooks, invite long walks to absorb all the surrounding beauty. The long mazes formed by shrubs with diverse and lively surprises appeal to the fun of children and adults.


You can park next to the castle. There is also a restaurant where you can enjoy typical foods and a gift shop.

Photos: Natacha Brigham


quinta-feira, 22 de agosto de 2019

Netherlands - Castles, Museums and Windmills


When we think of the Netherlands, it immediately comes to mind a vastness of tulips of various colors filling the fields with a unique beauty. A country that reminds us of flowers is necessarily a charming country.
In fact, the huge tulip fields and endlessly moving windmills make the Netherlands have a magic of its own to enjoy with an open mind.

Photo: Natacha Brigham

sexta-feira, 10 de novembro de 2017

Luxembourg Capital - Contrast between modernity and history




One way to end this short getaway is to visit Luxembourg and its capital which is a very developed industrial and commercial city being one of the richest cities in Europe. It is an important administrative and financial center. There are several institutions of the European Union, such as the European Court of Justice, the Court of Auditors and the European Investment Bank.





In contrast to modernity are the spectacular Casemates du Bock, remains of old medieval fortifications of the city of Luxembourg with an interesting subterranean system of passageways and galleries excavated in rocks. During the two Great World Wars thousands of people hid inside these tunnels.




It is recommended that, in order to escape the major tourist flow, it is necessary to go after August and before the winter because the castles close at that time.


With charming landscapes and typical German flavors this region reveals a vast historical and cultural heritage that is worth discovering.

terça-feira, 31 de outubro de 2017

Trier - The birthplace of Karl Marx





We continue trip to Trier, historical city and the oldest one of Germany. It is located in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, near the border with Luxembourg.







It has a very rich architecture and ancient Roman ruins like Porta Nigra. This portal of the city was so called because of the stones darkened with the passage of time. This is the oldest defense structure in Germany, dating back to the 3rd century. It is impressive by its size, 36 meters long, 21.5 meters wide and 30 meters high. Its structure is composed of large blocks of stone not bearing mortar!



Trier is the birthplace of Karl Marx. Son of parents of Jewish ancestry, he studied law and philosophy in Bonn and Berlin. In 2016 it would be 198 years. The visit to the Karl Marx museum, created in his residence, is fundamental to realize in loco the Marxist ideology. It is an inescapable name of universal history.

quarta-feira, 6 de setembro de 2017

Cochem - A charming town in the Mosel river




Following to the small and seductive town of Cochem. As we round a hill we discover the charming imperial castle that reveals all its magic and splendor!



Cochem is lively and colorful and its houses, with the wooden structure visible from the outside, leave a typical mark of this zone of Germany.



In the busiest street of this city we can find the bustle of the local commerce and we are captivated by the aroma of the varied German pastry, being irresistible to taste the typical Berliner (a Doughnut) with strawberry jam.



The Moselle River invites to a cruise that dazzles us by the landscape in which the green of the vines in the cliffs that surround the river accompany us during the whole route. It is interesting to see how the grapes are taken from the hills. Several lifts outline the landscape and carry baskets full with grapes.