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Tour the best of Amsterdam and enjoy picturesque canals and charming gabled facades lining the waterways. Exploring drawbridges, wonderful house boats and the museum district will allow you to discover the stories and scenic views behind Amsterdam’s most outstanding sights.
Amsterdam has more than one hundred kilometers of canals, about 90 islands and 1,500 bridges. The three main canals, Herengracht, Prinsengracht, and Keizersgracht, dug in the 17th century during the Dutch Golden Age, form concentric belts around the city, known as the Grachtengordel. The most exciting feature of the canals are the houseboats. By origin houseboats were a way to deal with the Amsterdam housing shortage, however, nowadays they are still in high demand. Some of the houseboats once were cargo vessels and are now converted into houseboats, other boats were built specifically for this purpose. In Amsterdam, you find these houseboats along the canals and the Amstel river and in the former Amsterdam docklands.
Amsterdam Centraal is the largest railway station in Amsterdam. It was designed by Dutch architect Pierre Cuypers, who is also known for his design of the Rijksmuseum, and first opened in 1889. It features a Gothic/Renaissance Revival style building and a cast iron platform roof spanning approximately 40 meters. It's the main transportation hub of the city, linking the railway, the metro of Amsterdam and the city buses.
The Royal Palace in Amsterdam is one of three palaces in the Netherlands which are at the disposal of the monarch by Act of Parliament. It was built as a city hall during the Dutch Golden Age in the 17th century. The building became the royal palace of King Louis Napoleon and later of the Dutch Royal House. The palace is located on the west side of Dam Square in the center of Amsterdam, opposite the War Memorial and next to the Nieuwe Kerk. Most of the year, the Royal Palace is open for visitors with audioguide or pre-booked group tours. It's closed for the special royal events.
The Nieuwe Kerk (New Church) isn't really brand new. It is a 15th-century church, located on Dam Square, next to the Royal Palace. It was built after the Old Church became too small for the growing city population, which explains the name. The Nieuwe Kerk is no longer used for church services but is used as an exhibition space. It is also used for organ recitals. The Nieuwe Kerk is a burial site for Dutch naval heroes, including Admiral Michiel de Ruyter, Commodore Jan van Galen, and Jan van Speyk. The poet and playwright Joost van den Vondel is also buried in the church.
The 800-year-old Oude Kerk ("old church") is Amsterdam’s oldest building and oldest parish church, founded ca. 1213. After the Reformation in 1578, it became a Calvinist church, which it remains today. It stands in De Wallen, now Amsterdam's main red-light district. The floor consists entirely of gravestones. The reason for this is that the church was built on a cemetery.
De Wallen or De Walletjes is the largest and best known red-light district in Amsterdam. It consists of a network of alleys containing approximately three hundred one-room cabins rented by prostitutes who offer their sexual services from behind a window or glass door, typically illuminated with red lights. These "kamers" are the most visible and typical kind of red light district sex work in Amsterdam and are a large tourist attraction. De Wallen, together with the prostitution areas Singelgebied and Ruysdaelkade, form the Rosse Buurt (red light areas) of Amsterdam. Of these De Wallen is the oldest and largest area. The area also has a number of sex shops, sex theatres, peep shows, a sex museum, a cannabis museum, and a number of coffee shops that sell marijuana.
The panoramic drive will take you around 60 miles of canals in Amsterdam to see the Old and New Church, the Dam Square, Royal Palace, a regal French Empire style structure once the residence of King Louis Napoleon. You will also see the Central Railway Station, Anne Frank House and Rijksmuseum, home to a wide collection of iconic artwork and come across some bright red lights of the infamous Red Light District.
The panoramic drive ends with a return transfer to your hotel.
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