Peep the video, then read the post…or do it the other way around. Whatever.
We found ourselves in a place we didn’t expect to find in Amsterdam.
Located in Chinatown, the He Hua Temple is a hidden gem among the skinny streets that pretty much all look the same.
We only went in for about ten minutes – ten peaceful minutes. The incense relaxed our minds as we soaked up information like the reasons why this temple was built in the Netherlands:
- To spread the Buddhist concepts, also by means of cultural exchanges and activities;
- To help to develop talents, skills and good qualities of people by means of good education;
- To stimulate positive developments in society by means of charity projects;
- To purify heart and soul of all people by giving them the opportunity of learning to practice Buddhism.
Cited from http://ibps.nl/he-hua-temple/
To get to Amsterdam Noord (North), one must take a free ferry by Central Station to cross the itty-bit of water that rests between the two land masses. Why is there no bridge? According to Anthony Bourdain’s tour guide in the Amsterdam episode of The Layover, he thinks “they” used to ship the crazy people and criminals over there hundreds of years ago. I guess they didn’t want them coming back…who knows. I admit the change in transportation was quite refreshing and welcomed by our aching feet.
By now I’ve read many blogs and tourist sites – only some of which mention Amsterdam Noord. Though we’ve only experienced two of its main attractions, I already recommend taking a day trip to see what it has to offer.
In order to get to the top of the Lookout, the price of regular admission is €12.50. I promise it’s well worth it if you like a gorgeous view. Included in your ticket is a free photo, like this one:
The building features a sky deck, Europe’s tallest swing on the sky deck, and an indoor lookout spot which doubles as a bar. Oh yeah, there’s a Gibson throne, too 🎸👑
Here’s some pics from the sky deck:
More shots from the indoors where it was warm:
Nestled on the opposite side of the bar were TVs and headphones full of info about Amsterdam. Here’s what I found to be the coolest tidbits:
Fun facts about Amsterdam & The Netherlands
- There are more bikes than people.
- 10,000 bikes are fished out of the canals a year.
- As one of the most diverse cities in the world, it’s home to over 175 nationalities.
- Holland was the first nation to legalize gay marriage, abortion, and euthanasia.
Perhaps the most incredible part of the city is the way the sun sets over it.
When the sky grew dark, we headed over to the A’DAM Lookout’s next-door neighbor, the Eye Film Museum. There was no exhibition at the time, but we were able to experience the bottom level for a few hours where we indulged ourselves with some fun facts about – you guessed it – film!
You can make your own if you want to pay like €6 for it – we didn’t.
The artifacts on display represent the evolution of film – from stereoscopy to a zoetrope to a Mitchell to an iPhone 3 (which was the first smartphone to be able to record a quality video) and all that’s in-between.
I was really hoping to see some 360 videos in here, but instead found a bunch of clips from monumental films that showcased the development of genres and styles of different cultures. Still cool.
Speaking of 360, I will have a VR video for you folks soon 😉
Private, Comfy Pods
There are little nooks where you can sit down and watch some of the most famous Dutch films of all time, which range from 10 minutes to an hour in length. We chose Zoo by Bert Haanstra (1962) – a silent film that still managed to make us giggle through a subtle string of events.
The Green Screen
Last but not least, there was a green screen that we had waaay too much fun with. See for yourself!
We used the green screen until the museum closed at 7 pm because that’s how much fun we were having.
After heading home, we slumped in our seats and didn’t move for seven hours. There’s no better way to end an adventurous day than brain-dumping it into a blog post until 3 am!
Are there any views that leave you in awe? Movies that move you more than others? Comment below to share them with us! We’re always looking for recommendations 🙂