Day Two – Rotterdam

Monday August 21st – Rotterdam Day Two


The Plan:


If we are successful in meeting our friend Yvonne and we are able to buy NS tickets for both days, will try and set a meeting with Yvonne at a station between Rotterdam and Amsterdam, since she lives in Amstelveen, just south of Amsterdam, so she doesn’t have to travel all the way to Rotterdam. We are planning to take the train to Leiden. 

Leiden is a city and municipality in the Dutch province of South Holland. The municipality of Leiden has a population of 122,915, but the city forms one densely connected agglomeration with its suburbs Oegstgeest, Leiderdorp, Voorschoten and Zoeterwoude with 206,647 inhabitants.


The Reality:

Yvonne, being the trooper she is, insisted on meeting us at Rotterdam Central for our second day of touring this beautiful country. 


Before we arrived she had obtained less expensive tickets for us to ride the train to Leiden, so after her arrival we were soon off, speeding on our way.  This time the train was quite direct with only stops at Gouda and The Hague.  The train was also a double decker and Yvonne made sure we got comfortable seating “up top”, as there, we were afforded the best views. It was like flying along at treetop level in some futuristic aircraft. 

Periodically the train flew past small camp-like dwellings that city residents use on the weekends for retreats and to grow small vegetable gardens for personal use. These dwellings, however, were not to be used for “sleeping over’.

After our arrival in Leiden we had a short walk to the boarding dock for our fabulous one hour canal boat ride.  As you will see in the image the boat is designed to navigate through close quarters because the bridges over the canal are so low there is just enough room to pass under.  It is possible to stand up and take pictures but not while passing under a low bridge.


The canals in Leiden are much broader and through the years many folks have taken up permanent residence on the house boats tied up along one side. 

Leiden is also a University Town where many students from Indonesia come to study, thus there is a large population of Indonesians who have taken up permanent residents here.

At the conclusion of our canal tour we rested at an outdoor coffee shop with delicious cups of regular and  cappuccino coffees.

Rest time over, we continued exploring this beautiful city. When Yvonne pointed out our next foray, I decided to get some lunch while the two of them soldiered on.  For me the nearby McDonalds looked like a great choice for lunch. Since the renowned painter, Rembrandt, was born in Leiden my choice of mega-calories would be a Maestro (Master) Burger with fries.

Afterwards as I stood waiting on a corner for the “girls”, I was awestruck by the operatic performance zooming  by in the street; a mixture of bicycles, scooters, motorcycles, city busses, trucks, and pedestrians all seeming to want to occupy the same space on the roadway at nearly the same time.  I would have photographed the event, but only a movie could have done the scene justice.


Jack W Cummings VOV 2017 – Sailing on the Irish Sea to Dublin

2 thoughts on “Day Two – Rotterdam

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