Getting to Know Amsterdam

Getting to Know Amsterdam

Jul 23
Image Credit: viator.com

Image Credit: viator.com

I was born and raised in Amsterdam. I lived in it, growing up to love every nook and cranny of the place. From the food to the clothes, to the many festivities and cultural heritages, I am a true Amsterdammer, or as we local folks call ourselves, Mokummer. Up until today, when I recall how much livelier and free-spirited my Amsterdam community is, I can’t help but feel pride and joy.

A lot of people ask, where is Amsterdam? Is that a country or a city or a town? What’s in that place, anyways?

Well, let me tell you a few things about this “unknown” place.

Amsterdam is the capital of the Netherlands, a nation in North-Western Europe. The Netherlands is also called “Holland.” But Holland is really the name of a district which today comprises of the nation’s two Western-most areas.

From the tenth to the sixteenth century Holland was one area known as the County of Holland. It was a piece of the Dutch Republic. However, by the seventeenth century — the nation’s Golden Age — Holland had ascended to turn into an oceanic and financial force, overwhelming other areas.

Ships from around the globe cruised to and from Amsterdam, in Holland. Since at the time the nation was authoritatively known as ‘Republic of the Seven United Netherlands’ (later: Kingdom of the Netherlands) the name Holland stuck to the people.

Amsterdam is the proud capital of Holland or Netherlands. It is one of the most innovative cities, and it also has a good ranking amongst the best cities in the whole world. Even when The Hague holds the government seat for Holland, Amsterdam remains to be the financial core of this country.

There are a lot of wonderful things that this place can offer besides the fact that it has a great reputation as a city, despite the very diverse population.

By diverse, I mean that even when the official language is Dutch, there are a lot of people living in this place that speaks English. This city is so diverse because it is home to people from 187 different nationalities. Hence, there is more than just Dutch and English when you come to this place. If you plan to visit, you would not even need to learn how to speak Dutch in order to communicate because more often than not, the English language would suffice.

Of course, that’s not to say that it would not be fun to learn the Dutch language, so you should go ahead and try if you want to.

Also, if you are a cyclist, then you would be happy to find out that this place have more bicycles than they have people. Yep, that is right. People in Amsterdam like to use bicycles so much that it’s a normal mode of transportation for everyone.

Image Credit: theneeds.com

Image Credit: theneeds.com