Hoorn, Netherlands: waiting to sail

The Netherlands will have to wait!

As fate would have it, my right shoulder has a tear in its rotator cuff. So I’ll be out for surgery (only a day) and then recovery. But writing may not be possible for a while. So, a trip to the classy little town of Hoorn and many others in The Netherlands and Belgium will […]

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Purple orchid close up: Keukenhof Gardens

Orchids, too, at Keukenhof Gardens

In our previous post, Ribbons of Color: Keukenhof Gardens, we touted the sensory overload of giant swaths of spring tulips at Keukenhof, the gardens near Amsterdam priding itself (and with good reason) on their plantings of over 7,000,000 tulips each year. What a spectacular site that was for us and the thousands of other visitors […]

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Keukenhof: pair of red tulips, sun background

Ribbons of Color: Keukenhof Gardens, Lisse, Netherlands

It may have been the biggest (and maybe the finest) surprise we’ve had cruising with Viking. While still in port in Amsterdam, our cruise director (Viking’s Holland & Belgium 2022) reported that tickets were available (unexpectedly) from Keukenhof Gardens in nearby Lisse for the last day of Tulip Festival. And then he asked, “Would any […]

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Lived-in boat on an Amsterdam canal

You gotta do it: Amsterdam via canal boat

Seeing a city can take on many forms from private driver in a limousine to a jaunty ride on a hop-on, hop-off bus. But in a waterway city, there’s nothing better than a slow-paced tour in a boat, complete with a guide narrating the landmarks in a city he loves! We’ve written about the architecture […]

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Locking down my bike: Amsterdam

On the move in Amsterdam

We never saw it coming. Even though our driver from the airport in Amsterdam (where we began our trip through The Netherlands and Belgium) told us about the bikes, we never guessed the volume, speed, and daily dose of cycling we’d see first-hand. But as soon as we arrived in Amsterdam, we were especially grateful […]

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Berlin Christmas Market: gold lady on stilts

Berlin Christmas Market: Sophisticated Shopping

Our final stop at Germany’s Christmas markets may have been our best. Berlin did not disappoint! With the kid-friendly rides and good country food at Dessau and Magdeburg and the fresh greens of lovely booths in Hannover behind us, we thought the markets couldn’t get any better. But then we shopped Berlin’s Gendarmenmarkt. Sophisticated booths […]

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