I always wanted to live in big city other than London where I grew up in. Don’t get me wrong, I love London but I just always had the urge to look for new adventures. I travelled around the world when I graduated and have seen many places.

Right after I came back, which was in June 2016, the UK voted over 50% to leave the European Union.. The Brexit was to come.

It was right at that time I started to seriously consider moving to another city, preferably somewhere in Europe. In the end I choose Amsterdam!

Bicycle, bicycle, bicycle, I want to ride my bike!

Bicycles park in Amsterdam

Aside from the fact that Amsterdam is within a few hours flight from London (yes this is convenient for my mom) across the North Sea, Amsterdam is a totally new world. We have bicycles in London and the UK but it’s nothing like Amsterdam. This is the number 1 primary method of transportation for most of its residents. To logistically take care of all these bicycles that need to be parked they have these awesome huge bikeparks:

It makes it possible that in this small historical city it doesn’t feel that crowded since there are a relatively small amount of cars driving around.

I use my bike to get places and I’m loving it. I do not have to worry about car insurance, gas or maintenance and I can go to the bar, have a few drinks and ride home (walk home if a few too many) safely. Most of places I go to are within 30 minutes of range so that is pretty awesome.

Beautiful architecture

Amsterdam canals

The typical style of Dutch architecture but in Amsterdam more so is pretty amazing. In some older streets you will really see the buildings leaning towards you. They are very small and tall and the atmosphere is unlike any other city I have ever experienced.

Wonderful canals

The canals are what gives Amsterdam that unique taste among its architecture. What I find really cool that now I am established in the city for some time and have friends to drive in a boat every now and again it’s amazing how you will see the city from another perspective. The small idyllic streets are just awesome to explore.

In the winter we could even ice skate last year, unfortunately due to global warming these pictures will soon become quite rare.

People ice skating on Amsterdam canals

The Dutch

This is purely subjective, either you love them or you hate them. My personal experience with the Dutch was initially not very good. As a british person, I really had to get used to their customs. The British are generally a bit more polite and calm towards each other, we have a bit more personal space and with people we do not know we are quite formal (very very formal according to the Dutch). We avoid long eye contact so in general we naturally create a bit more distance.

The Dutch are quite opposite in most cases and this sometimes creates some miscommunication, they sometimes read our way of communicating as untrustworthy . When you learn that the Dutch want to learn who you are and their reasons for being more direct it actually starts to become really easy going to meet new people and something I really like a lot. It is straight to the point and there is no intention to insult you at all.

Geschreven door: Andrew

Thinking about moving to the Netherlands? Click here.