The capital of the Netherlands leaves no one indifferent, a modern and open-minded city. There are many rulers who have desired to govern it, and some artists have given it a great cultural legacy to be very proud of. Dare to know a little more about Amsterdam.
There is much to discover in this modern European city, its cultural heritage is very interesting and the architecture of the city has made tourists to fall in love with it. Another claims of Amsterdam are its various and varied museums as well as the ability to go through almost the entire city taking a leisurely bike ride, to finish enjoying a colourful and spectacular sunset sipping a beer on the banks of the Amstel river.
This exciting city had a very humble beginning, a simple boat fishermen who settled on the banks of the river Amstel in the thirteenth century. But this small fishing town began to bloom very quickly thanks to maritime trade with other nearby cities, which put Amsterdam in the sights of the powerful.
Thus the wars of Flanders began under the order of the Spanish King Philip II. They lasted 80 years and ended with the independence of the Netherlands. After this violent stage, Amsterdam experienced a period of peace which turned the city into a cradle of tolerance, there arrived sephardic Jews persecuted in the Iberian Peninsula in search of exile, Huguenots escaped from France and even Protestant traders from Antwerp. A real melting pot.
It couldn’t be otherwise, the environment of intercultural coexistence led to a phenomenal economic growth throughout the seventeenth century, considered the "Golden Age".
Amsterdam is currently one of the most advanced cities in Europe, both for the projection of its streets (where 80% of the land is built over the sea), and the way of life of its inhabitants. As a curiosity we can mention that out of the 750,000 inhabitants of this city, nearly 700,000 often use bicycles as a means of transportation! It is undoubtedly the most popular vehicle in Amsterdam.
And of course if you are travelling to Amsterdam we recommend visiting some of its most important museums, including the Rikjsmuseum (National Museum), which has the world's largest collection of Dutch paintings in the fifteenth and seventeenth centuries. You will also want to visit the Van Gogh’s Museum which has over 600 works of the great artist. And do not forget that Amsterdam will be eternally linked to Rembrandt, so you must also visit the Rembrandt House Museum, where more than 260 drawings of this great painter are exposed.
We do not know what those sailors had in mind when they first arrived at the banks of the river Amstel, certainly they would have never imagined this modest settlement would become one of the most important cities of the European continent.