It’s 9pm and twilight is approaching. We’re sitting in the apartment having a glass of wine as I write this. It’s warm, but I think the night will be pleasant. Things are calming down outside – the are are less boats going past on the canal.

We made good time on the plane – despite being forty minutes late to take off we were only twenty minutes late in Amsterdam. Our driver met us at the airport and we had a very pleasant drive into the city.

This is our apartment on the Herengracht, one of Amsterdam’s most beautiful canals.

The front door is incredibly heavy.

The living room.

Kitchen.

Bathroom.

Bedroom.

Spacious and comfortable.

We look right out over the canal – and you know how much I like canals!

We then took a walk around the corner to get some groceries from the little supermarket opposite the Westerkerk (West Church).

Trying to decide which butter.

Later we took a walk to Dam Square, the central town square of Amsterdam. The gothic Nieuwe Kerk (New Church).

Unfortunately the Royal Palace (Koninkiljke Paleis) was obscured by scaffolding, plus there was a temporary arena set up for some kind of football played on sand.

The National Monument.

Damrak – the main street of Amsterdam. It’s amazing how busy and crowded this area felt compared to where we are staying a mere two blocks from here.

A stand selling Poffertjes – waffles.

A little bit of shopping.

We headed back for a walk along the Singel – Amsterdam’s first canal.

We were thirsty and this place looked nice.

Ah – refreshing Grolsch. We sat in the sun (I wore my hat) and I practised my Dutch – “alstublieft” means “please”.

We then headed north. Strangely there are ladies along this street standing in windows in their apartments wearing only their lingerie. They needed curtains as just about anyone could look in! They didn’t seem to mind though, they actually waved. You’re not meant to take photographs of them though, so I didn’t. They’re “ladies of the night” you see – but in broad daylight.

I don’t think Popeye is smoking spinach in this place. Where you see the word “coffeeshop” it means that you can buy and smoke marijuana there. However, we were interested in something far more important. Dutch pancakes.

We headed down the Prinsengracht. Oops – these two boats almost had a collision.

Bicycles everywhere. You have to be very careful crossing the street!

All along the northern end of the Prinsengracht are houseboats, and everyone is outdoors enjoying the summer sunshine.

We finally made it to the Pancake Bakery, where you could order any type of pancake you want. Sweet, savoury, even omelettes! The table has a canister of powdered sugar and three different Dutch syrups, including one in a great pot with a wooden spoon. Our kind of place!

My pancake had ham, cheese and pineapple. Mark has the Greek pancake with lamb, garlic and tzatziki.

Despite eating the world’s largest pancakes, we thought it was our tourist duty to order dessert. We shared a raisin and cheese pancake. I was expecting the cheese to be a sweet cream cheese like you have in a Jewish or Russian blintz, but it was actually a cheddar. All the syrup and powdered sugar couldn’t disguise the salty cheese taste, so we admitted defeat.

Red shutters on the way home.

Anne Frank’s house.

The queue for Anne Frank’s house. We’re going on Thursday. Luckily I have printed our prepaid tickets to skip the queue!

When we arrived back at the apartment we checked Orlando’s Facebook page back in Liverpool. There he was getting comfortable on his bed. Awwww. We miss him already.

Anyway, that’s all for today. Goedenacht!