Holiday back home in The Netherlands

Bergse Voor Plas in Rotterdam, Netherlands

No that is not a photo made in Thailand! I am living almost 14 years in Thailand now and in the beginning I did go back "home" for a yearly reality-check and meeting family & friends. In the years passing your social circle changes and the years in between going back "home" became more & more. The last time that I did go back home to see family & friends was almost 3 years ago, so my 50th birthday was a good reason to go back "home" again. So we did book a straight flight Bangkok to Amsterdam with Eva Air. It was a comfortable but always too long flight. The flight was good but trying to travel from Schiphol to Rotterdam was a disaster as due to a "fire" in the train tunnel there were no trains leaving Schiphol. Mind you it seems that this kind "fires" are happening quit often. So although I had already bought & paid tickets (by Internet) for the train (13 Euro pp) we took a taxi home.

Of course it is not really "home" anymore as I feel that Thailand has become my home. And I do not have a house (home) anymore in the Netherlands. So we did stay at Bed & Breakfast Hillegersberg. What is a almost brand new 1 room B&B in a local residence area with good connection to the center of Rotterdam. It was a perfect room with small kitchen, bathroom with shower only, TV corner and access to the beautiful garden with a few chickens. We really loved it! The area of Hillegersberg has changed and there are now a few nice shops & restaurants like the Italian restaurant & lunch room La Salute or Argentinian grill restaurant Gauchos Grill and the classic French restaurant Het Oude Raadhuis (what was a little bit of a disappointment food-wise). And of course the very good green supermarket Marqt (bye bye Albert Hein). And for the best chocolate you go to De Bonte Koe.

Trees in beautiful blossom everywhere
After a few days Rotterdam we traveled to the Keukenhof (Lisse) to walk thru the beautiful park with thousands of flowers. Mostly tulips but also many other flowers. Entrance fee is 15 Euro pp. Most visitors are Asian with Chinese, Korean, Japanese and even a few Thais. The park is very well taken care of and actually nice to visit.

Tulips at Keukenhof, Netherlands

From the Keukenhof we traveled by train to Arnhem to visit friends there and stay there for a few days. The area of Arnhem and Nijmegen along the German border and many rivers is beautiful. We made a small hiking trip in the "Posbank" and had lunch at Paviljoen De Posbank. It is a beautiful and typical Dutch landscape, great for walking a few hours. We did visit both Arnhem and Nijmegen and at the latter I did visit the best motorbike shop of the area Termaat Motoren (the biggest collection of protective riding gear that I have seen but they also sell motorbikes).

From Arnhem we traveled again by train to the south of the Netherlands to Epen to enjoy a few days the beautiful landscape & nature of "Geuldal" where we did stay in a 300 years old farm house. We enjoyed the good bourgeoisie life-style and had dinner at De Smidse (great food & service) and Buitenlust (great view but food-wise it was a bit of a disappointment). From Epen we traveled to the historical city of Zierikzee along the North-sea for a last stop at our tour of the Netherlands. From here it was back to Rotterdam again to take the next day our flight back to Bangkok again. It had been 3 weeks with beautiful weather and enjoying the beautiful Dutch landscape and nature.

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