I am an American living in The Netherlands. My husband, Shane, and I
moved to Amsterdam in early July 2000 from a Virginia suburb of Washington,
DC. Our dog, Hari, safely flew out a few weeks after us and our furniture
arrived, relatively unscathed, about a month and a half later.
Shane & I had long fantasized about living in Europe. We naturally
jumped at the chance to move here when Shane was offered a job with an European
Internet organization based in Amsterdam. Details about the job search,
interviewing process, and moving will be put up here ... one day... soon,
hopefully. So, bookmark this page and check back. In the mean time, here
are some other online resources to help you get started.
interested in moving to The Netherlands or elsewhere in Europe should visit
Expatica.com: News and Community for the Expatriate
- absolute MUST for anyone thinking about or already living in The Netherlands.
Provides local & international news, relocation, tax, & housing
resources, info on education, jobs, shopping, transportation, entertainment
... in short, Expatica covers virtually every aspect of daily life to help
you prepare for and become acclimated to The Netherlands.
- an online community of expatriates from all over to all over the globe.
Living in The Netherlands
- an abbreviated, online version of the book "Live and Work in Belgium,
the Netherlands & Luxemburg" by André de Vries. Mainly a sales
pitch for the book, but the short essays do provide some useful information.
Colleges & Universities in The Netherlands
- might of be interest for those contemplating study abroad or if you
are simply a perpetual student, like me ;-) The page has not been updated
since 1996, however most of the links still work.
- an interesting resource about finding jobs overseas & surviving
relocation. Heavy emphasis on retirement and tropical-tax free destinations,
but also has good articles about Europe.
Amsterdam is small, compact city, but there is a lot to see and do. Just
a few of the major highlights include:
Rijksmusuem - give it at least half a day, but you could easily spend several
Van Gogh musuem - very nicely done - and this from someone who is not a
Van Gogh fan. This is a small museum you could probably see it all in 2-3
Canal boat tour - there are hour long tours all day and evening long.
No advance reservations required.
Personal favorites of mine:
Vondelpark (Amsterdam's answer to Central Park. Great place to walk, roller
blade, bike, and people watch at anytime of year, but most lovely in Spring
& Summer when the mini-English garden is at its best. The park has an
odd menagerie - lamas, horses, a variety of farm animals, crains and parrots.
The parrots are wild - apparently some college students released a few
into the park 40 years ago and they have been healthily breeding ever since!
Amsterdam Historical Museum on Spui - the name says it all. It's not as
widely visited as other musuems in Amsterdam, because it is relatively new
but attention is growing. Well worth a trip! It is small and can easily
be done in an afternoon. If you are not into art, I would recommend it over
the Van Gogh museum.
Evening wine & cheese boat tour - the wine and cheese weren't really
that good - not compared to what you can get at a restaurant or even a grocery
store. However, the tour itself was much more interesting than the normal
canal tours. This tour is about 2-2.5 hours long and has a personal guide
vs a recording. The tour I went on included a stop at a traditional brown
cafe for Dutch gin.
There are many more places to visit and as well as self-guided walking
tours. There are several nice half day and a couple full day bus tours
you could take to see the traditional country sights- cheese, wooden shoes,
windmills, and tulips. I would also highly recommend a day trip to Den
Haag (easily done without a guided tour) and Brugges in Belgium (gives you
an impression of what Amsterdam might have been like in the late middle ages).