Amsterdam was full of surprises. First, I was surprised by the trip itself, when my friend Leslie sent me a message a few weeks into my stay here saying “I BOOKED A TRIP!!” (How amazing is she?) Then, a surprise that two other girls, Maggie and Emily, were going to be able to join us. More surprises when Regine and Carsten gave me my plane ticket for my birthday.

The biggest surprise? Amsterdam is gorgeous. It’s also expensive (should have done my research!) and was VERY cold the weekend we were there. Excluding those last two points, the weekend was absolutely perfect. An ideal first trip out of Berlin.

We lucked out on Friday with some sunshine - the most I'd seen since I've been in Europe!

So many of the buildings in Amsterdam are crooked, since the city is built on soft soil that sits below sea level. Can you tell?

We stayed in a houseboat hostel – Vita Nova. The rooms were tiny (duh) but the overall experience of sleeping on a boat and getting a morning wake-up call from a swan was worth the claustrophobia.

This guy woke Leslie up on Saturday morning.

Look out for a post with more details and photos tomorrow. 

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