Following on from my outfit post from 12 hours in Amsterdam, here is my full review post from the trip. We booked a mini-cruise to Amsterdam, which involved 2 over night stays on the ferry and one full day in the great city itself! We were travelling from Hull docks, which was only an hour’s drive from Leeds. I’d not been to Hull docks before, but finding it was very easy as the ferry port was well sign posted once you were in Hull.
There’s lots of parking at the port and a 2 night stay for your car will cost you £14, which I didn’t think was too bad! The checking in process was super quick and stress free, unlike that you can sometimes experience at an airport! They advise you to arrive 90 minutes before departure. I’d recommend arriving nice and early, so it gives you more time to relax once your on board!
After a swift check-in and short walk over the foot bridge, we were on board the ‘Pride of Hull’. It was my first time on a ferry since we used to go to France when I was a kid, it was quite exciting for me and brought back some fun memories! We quickly put the bags in the cabins and then went for a quick explore round the ferry, I say quick, we made it to the first bar and stopped for a well earnt beer! We then made it to one of the outdoor viewing decks where we waited for the ferry to set sail from the port, and admired the view (not that the view from Hull docks was that stunning)!
The coach journey to Amsterdam from Rotterdam (approx 2 hours) seem to last forever,
although it gave you chance to have a nap and try shake off the hangover! We arrived in Amsterdam around 11am, by this time we’d worked up a big a big appetite! We picked one of the many cafes down a little quirky street. I opted for a full english breakfast and Sam had tagliatelle carbonara.
Having refuelled, we found the hop on hop off tour bus and got off to have a whistle stop tour of the red light district. Having forgot to get a map from the tour guide on the bus, finding the right bus stop again proved tricky. We found a lovely bakery on the way and sampled some of their delicious looking waffles! We hopped back on the tour bus headed for our next destination; the Heineken Factory.
The Heineken Factory tour is one of the more popular tourist attractions in Amsterdam, it costs 17 euros each (including discount with bus ticket). As we were trying to cram as much as we could into the day, we went round fairly quickly! I really enjoyed the Heineken experience as there were lots of fun interactive attractions like the test to see if you can pour the perfect pint, which I of course passed! What tour of a beer brewing factory could be complete without tasting their wonderful beer! As it was a warm day, it tasted like liquid gold!
After making a quick souveneir purchase in the Heineken gift shop, we got back on the tour bus. We had planned on visiting the Van Gogh museum, however, we were quickly running out of time as we had to be back at 5pm for the coach back to the port in Rotterdam. We thought we’d fit in a rapid stop at the ‘I am Amsterdam’ sign to get that highly sought after photo!
We had to make the I am Amsterdam sign the last stop of the day as we were due to be picked up by the coach at 5pm. Once back on board the ferry, and after a quick shower, we watched the ferry depart from a windy Rotterdam. It would of been rude not to take advantage of the offer on the ‘world beers’ again, so had a few before going along to the restaurant for a buffet meal. I thought it was relatively good value for £25, I certainly enjoyed trying some of the different deserts they had on offer!
We visited one of the bars for a final time to enjoy a couple of after dinner drinks before heading back to the cabin to get some well earnt sleep! In the morning, and after a very early wake up call again, we got up, packed our bags and headed for the exit gate.
On our way back to sunny West Yorkshire, we even had time to stop off at a Lighthouse and Windmill, I felt lucky to be able to see two quirky buildings in the same day! Overall, the Amsterdam mini cruise was amazing, I’d definitely do 2 over night stays next time. I would love to do the same and explore Bruges.