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The Vancouver area is home to many parks. The city is super green and designed for outdoor activities, from just hanging out on a bench to working out and playing with the kids. No matter where you go, you'll find art installations. They're such a...
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325 Cambie St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2N4, Canada
If you’re a coffee nerd, Revolver is the place to go for personal-size, pour-over coffees brewed from their unique lines of beans. Hang out for a while and you’ll run into everyone who lives at this end of Gastown. (604) 558-4444. As told to...
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45 Blood Alley Square, Vancouver, BC V6B 1C7, Canada
This little hideaway in a back alley, with its communal tables and chalkboard menus, is where I go with friends when we want to share snacks. They match wines to "tasting trios" selected from their cheese and charcuterie cellar. It’s best to let...
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Elandsgracht 108, 1016 VA Amsterdam, Netherlands
On a rainy summer night (thunder! lightening!), we had very low expectations of getting a table at Balthazar's Keuken—mostly because something I read said that it was hard to get in. But there was a table, right in the back by the open...
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Albert Cuypstraat 53, 1072 CM Amsterdam, Netherlands
On our way to the Concertgebouw, we couldn't resist entering this tempting bakery. Inside? The moistest lemon cake I've ever tasted, along with unique muffins, cakes, and other sweet delights. Savory breads and sandwiches are available as well,...
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Noordhollandschkanaaldijk 21, 1034 ZL Amsterdam, Netherlands
What could easily be considered an icon of Holland is becoming harder to find: The traditional windmill. While windmills can be hard to come by in Amsterdam, rent a bicycle and ride through Noord-Holland, where you'll find this traditional...
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Overtoom 160-162, 1054 HP Amsterdam, Netherlands
We had been to Gollem for a drink and a snack (note: the meat platter is hearty) the evening before, but when we found ourselves on Overtoom after visiting Vondelpark, with Gollem just opening for lunch, we went for it again. After all, it was our...
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Herengracht 90, 1015 BS Amsterdam, Netherlands
Many of bars in Amsterdam serve the standard mass market beers, and those that serve craft beer predominantly sell Belgian beers. 't Arendsnest was recommended by our bed and breakfast hosts as a local bar that focuses on Dutch craft beers. How...
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Kinkerstraat 1, 1053 DB Amsterdam, Netherlands
You know what's annoying? Biking around Amsterdam on a bike that screams I'M A TOURIST. Here at Bike4U, you can get classic black Gazelles. Prices are good, child seats are available, and the Bulgarian guys who run the place are super nice. Note...
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Plantage Kerklaan 38-40, 1018 CZ Amsterdam, Netherlands
Amsterdam is a city with so much to offer that it can be overwhelming when planning your visit. With the museums, restaurants, canals, and nightlife to explore it can be even harder to plan your trip on a budget. If you are going for at least a...
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Oosterdokskade 143, 1011 DL Amsterdam, Netherlands
This is not a secret to locals, but off-the-beaten path (but still not too out of the way) is a place with a surprisingly tasty dinner for under ten euros. It's the library cafeteria. But seriously: That bowl of Thai noodle soup with...
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Singel, 1012 XG Amsterdam, Netherlands
After biking all around Amsterdam, you will work up an appetite. While perusing all the millions of flowers and bulbs, it was a nice surprise to find something to nibble on. After we sampled all the cheeses, we were full and it cost nothing! Great...
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Papentorenvest 1A, 2011 AV Haarlem, Netherlands
Just a 15 minute train ride from Amsterdam is the picturesque town of Haarlem, complete with canals and De Adriaan windmill. You can go in (for a fee) but the best viewpoint is across the canal (and free!). As a bonus, Haarlem is a fairly compact...
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Burgemeester Reigerstraat 25, 3581 KK Utrecht, Netherlands
If you're a bread person you shouldn't miss the tasty bread they have at Hooi. It's also nice to work there on the well known Dutch rainy days or outside when the weather is nice.
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Alblasserdam, Netherlands

This is the last place in the Netherlands where you can see windmills in their original locations. We were there in February, which meant they didn't have any up and running, but that also meant it wasn't crowded. Just joggers and walkers out on...

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Stationsweg 166A, 2161 AM Lisse, Netherlands
A dutch garden/disneyland for tulip lovers. See every variety of bulb flower in the world. Worth a day trip from Amsterdam in April or May.
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Westerpark, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Amsterdam might be the perfect urban destination for a toddler. A new park every day. This was taken at Westerpark, but by far the best locals-only park was Flevopark. It's a long ride from the center, but totally tranquil on a Sunday afternoon....
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Eastern Docklands, Amsterdam, Netherlands
The fact that there is a special-occasion restaurant like the Wilde Zwijnen (which means Wild Boar) is a sign of wealth in the neighborhood. I like the interiors: stylish but natural. The boar dishes are good, but they also do nice ravioli filled...
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Funenkade 7, 1018 AL Amsterdam, Netherlands
“Brouwerij ’t IJ is the only place in the city that brews its own organic beer. We like to come on summer evenings and sit on the terrace. Ruben, my husband, really enjoys the Zatte and Columbus beers.”  —Maartje Van...
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Wolvenstraat 9, 1016 EM Amsterdam, Netherlands
Tourists may throng through Amsterdam's busy city center on Kalverstraat, but travelers in the know saunter down "De Negen Straatjes" or "The Nine Streets." Trendy boutiques, designer fashions, and snug cafes line the cobblestone street grid to...
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Herengracht 427, 1017 BR Amsterdam, Netherlands
I love the lighting and dignity of this cat, just standing near the Rijksmuseum.
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Helmersbuurt, 1054 Amsterdam, Netherlands
The Dutch all appear tall and slim to the visitor, but it has to be the biking that's the secret to their physiques, not the lunches. The kroket is a Dutch staple and is carbs, upon carbs and served with a side of carbs. I sampled one at the...
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Gabriël Metsustraat 8, 1071 EA Amsterdam, Netherlands
It's not going to blow anyone's mind to say that the Van Gogh Museum is a must-see in Amsterdam. When we were there they were in the midst of moving to the Hermitage, so the full collection was not on display. Still, the fraction of the collection...
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What's not to like about Museumplein? In summer, it's as chill as Vondelpark, with picnickers playing instruments and getting high on the lawn. Add more grass and the field becomes stoners' heaven as well as a magnet for art aficionados. The...
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Brouwersgracht 60, 1013 GX Amsterdam, Netherlands
De Belhamel restaurant is located near the Central train station in a very quiet residential neighborhood. It would be hard to find a prettier location for a leisurely lunch or romantic dinner - the restaurant sits at the junction of the...
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Begijnhof 29, 1012 WT Amsterdam, Netherlands
In the center of buzzing Amsterdam there's an oasis of peace that dates back to 1150, when a group of Catholic women banded together in a religious community. You won’t have to stand in line to visit this top Amsterdam attraction as you do...
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NDSM-Plein 102, 1033 WB Amsterdam, Netherlands
On a hopping night, Noorderlicht (Northern Lights) blazes with colorful lights visible clear across the IJ River—hence its name. For those drinking and jamming to live music on a waterfront terrace warmed by a roaring bonfire, the setting is...
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Twijnstraat 67, 3511 ZJ Utrecht, Netherlands
The Dutch take their cheese very seriously. Heck, there's even a town named Gouda (seeminly not made of Gouda, although it was dark when the train rumbled past). In Utrecht's downtown, the Kazeri Stalenhoff showcases a beautiful wall of cheese.
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Pieter Cornelisz Hooftstraat, 1071 Amsterdam, Netherlands
From vintage shops and hipster boutiques in the Negen Straats (Nine Streets) to posh designer outlets on P.C. Hoofstraat, Amsterdam's shopping scene is nothing if not eclectic. There's something for everyone on Kalverstraat, a shopping street that...
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Westerstraat 30, 1015 DS Amsterdam, Netherlands
While walking the streets of Amsterdam I stumbled on this great local cafe that has "Boca's" (aka small tapas like sandwiches). There were lots of options from sweet to savory to choose + a great beer and wine selection. It is a perfect place for...
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Oosterdokskade 5, 1011 AD Amsterdam, Netherlands
Just three months after opening last August, the 70-seat Samhoud Places restaurant was awarded two Michelin stars for international dishes such as sole in hazelnut sauce, chickpea and crab crepes, and eggplant moussaka. Hit the casual lounge for a...
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Domplein 21, 3512 JC Utrecht, Netherlands
Utrecht, NL is where I gained confidence to buy a bike in the city back home. I've never explored a city on a bike before, my view of exploration has changed. I felt like I blended in with the locals. It's so easy especially in a country that...
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Prinsengracht 381, 1016 HL Amsterdam, Netherlands
If artful cuisine served in sleek yet homey ambiance appeals, it would be sinful to miss Envy, a chic pearl on Prinsengracht, honored for the sixth consecutive year by Michelin. You're not likely to commit gluttony at this Italian deli-inspired...
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Frederiksplein 29, 1017 XL Amsterdam, Netherlands
An artisanal coffee shop (French press, filter or syphon) with excellent little sandwiches and cakes. A spacious nook in the back with armchairs and couches makes it suitable for work but I recommend snatching the spot in the front by the window...
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Donkere Gaard 8, 3511 KW Utrecht, Netherlands
“Are you up for a little bike ride? To start the real Dutch experience?” My friend Lisa’s text reads. I see it while riding the train from Schipol Airport to Utrecht, the start of a week with two close friends. I love real travel experiences, but...
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Voorstraat 46, 3512 AP Utrecht, Netherlands
If you're looking for the best coffee in town as well as the best music then you should visit the Village. It's also the place where most of the hipsters hang around. Enjoy!
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Ganzenmarkt, 3512 GE Utrecht, Netherlands
Admire unusual light-based artwork around Utrecht on the nightly Trajectum Lumen route. Stumble around Utrecht's walkable center after dark on your own (you can download a map of the route for free), or hire a guide for extra commentary if you...
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Donkere Gaard 8, 3511 KW Utrecht, Netherlands
Warm or cold in the Netherlands, Utrecht's Cafe Orloff is cozy and breezy at the same time. In warmer weather, sit outside along canals and cobblestones streets with friends enjoy a beer and bitterballen combo. When temperatures dip, sit inside...
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Oudegracht aan de Werf 159, 3511 AL Utrecht, Netherlands
Savor Dutch and international dishes expertly paired with wines from around the world at this cozy restaurant in a medieval wharf cellar. The home-made fries are excellent, as are meat and fish main courses, and the warm chocolate cake with fruit...
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Achter Clarenburg 6A, 3511 JJ Utrecht, Netherlands
Only in Holland will you find a restaurant in a church! It’s plain exterior belies the gem that lays inside, as this was one of Utrecht’s “hidden churches.” It dates back to the 16th century when Catholic churches were forbidden and hence hidden...
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8355 Giethoorn, Netherlands
Renting a boat in Giethoorn is a great experience, they go pretty slow so you can enjoy the place, take photos and just take it all in. The owners must be used to the tourists staring at the beauty of their homes so they act like there is nobody...
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8355 Giethoorn, Netherlands
After walking all day in Giethoorn, in the scorching sun, we had to sit down for a snack and what I thought will be just a sandwich turned out to be this wonderful mix of flavors. Local, slightly melted goat cheese, local honey, walnuts, sun dried...