A Travellerspoint blog

Amsterdam board ship day 4

semi-overcast 22 °C
View Europe trip on Nors Stephens's travel map.

Another great day. John and Barry went to get my camera fixed while Marjolein and I went exploring.

We went to a house where girls wanted to do work like nuns but not live like nuns. The house is one of the oldest in Amsterdam. Its really interesting the houses and the way foundations are collapsing and the lean they are on.

We then went to the flower markets I was in seventh heaven the flowers and so many bulbs. You can buy cannibus seeds and starter packs even get advice on the best to grow in your area.

We were supposed to get picked up at 11 am but the ship broke a rudder on the way here and had to be fixed. Got picked up at 4pm and to the boat. There is not enough water at some part of the river so they swapped ships. While the people went for a day trip their luggae was loaded on the new sohip. W.e are on the star but should have been the sky.

Very comfortable on board. Lovely buffet dinner. There are alot of Aussies, British, Americans and a couple of Germans. Good mix.
Early rise tomorrow for a nice cruise.

Stay safe.

Posted by Nors Stephens 13:46 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

Amsterdam Day 3


semi-overcast 25 °C
View Europe trip on Nors Stephens's travel map.

Very busy and interesting day.

A bit of drizzle today but pleasent day. Quite hot and warm evening. Went on a bus trip today visited windmills,
cheese factory, Marken fishing village, Volendam.

Really green countryside. There are small channels everywhere which drain into larger channels until they get to sea level then into the sea. Most of the country is up to 7 mtrs beliw sea level. Its amazing. Most people live in units because the land is very precious. A big percentage is reclaimed land.

The windmills were not working when we arrived but while there started up. The one we visited was crushing peanuts for oil.

Walked along the red light district, so many tourists just walking past. Felt safer there than the valley though.

In the square outside the new curch and the Royal palace we walked and watched. There are people standing still like in Brisbane, man playing bagpipes, magic men, girls dancing but John had his photo taken with the prettiest lol.

Lay day today before going to boat later today.

Until next time stay safe.

Posted by Nors Stephens 21:47 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

Amsterdam Day 2


sunny 32 °C
View Europe trip on Nors Stephens's travel map.

What a great day. Left Amsterdam by train at 9.08 am, after a great breakfast, for Maastrict. We travelled past canals and green pastures. Reminded me of Cristchurch driving to Darfield.

Such a hot day around 30degrees. We met up with Marjoleins Aunt and 2 cousins in Maastrict and what a beautiful town it is. Ena was our walking tour guide. So much history. We love all the outdoor dining and drinking and once again chairs in lines facing the road. Everyone so nice and friendly. A bridge we walked over today was built by the Romans.

After a brilliant lunch we did a river cruise and experienced our first lock. Went down 4 meters automated lock. The other 2 locks were would open by 2 guys who raced to the next one on scooters.

So hot we drank so much water today. Going down the river we saw 2 caravan parks full as holiday time. Just like Australia after a very hot day it is pouring down outside. Midnight at the moment. Also had pointed out Andreau R__________ castle and house.

Will post some more tomorrow hope everyone is safe and well.

Posted by Nors Stephens 15:08 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

Amsterdam Day 1

12 August 2015

overcast 18 °C
View Europe trip on Nors Stephens's travel map.

Arrived safe and sound. Some of us had a great sleep on the plane. Great flights although bumpy from Brisbane to Singapore. Food was amazing.

After dropping our bags to the hotel we walked to check out central station for our trip to Maastrict tomorrow. What a station, massive, and outside there are trams and buses. After sitting by the canal having coffee we booked a combined bus / boat hop on hop off for 24 hours. We did canal cruise first, very interesting so busy The price of ghe house boats is so expensive. From what you can see through the windows they are very nice inside. Never seen so many bikes in my life and from young to really old. Have to get used to looking for bikes they go so fast and quiet they are the old bikes could watch them all day. No lycra bodies and fancy bikes in the city. The lady in A place to call home has a typical bike like here. Saw one today dad with 4 kids on the bike. Not a helmet to be seen.

Will put photos on when work out how again.

Bus trip was great and got off and went to Anne Franks house but 3-4 hour wait so didnt go in.

Everybody very happy especially at some coffee shops, smell quite strong nearby. Bars are everywhere and people sit like at the movies but watching people go past. Walked down before and cant get seat for 4 at any. Might have to start earlier next time.

Very easy to get around and feel really safe so far.

See what tomorrow brings.

Nors John Barry and Marjolein.

Posted by Nors Stephens 12:15 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

Europe trip

2 sleeps

Final days. Has come quickly. Barry arrived, problems with wi-fi bed time. Tomorrow so much to do. Trying to set this new blog up sorry if you get unwanted emails.

Posted by Nors Stephens 05:58 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Day 19

Buenos Aires

sunny 22 °C

Yesterday we toured the city of Buenos Aires with very narrow streets in the city. We visited the central square and saw the presidential palace. Stopped at a famous coffee shop Cafe Las Violetas and had pastries coffee, some had hot chocolate which was like chocolate melted. We also visited the Recoleta cemetery where Eva Peron is in a mausoleum. The cemetary was really amazing, with really ornate sculptures. People eat sweet pastries and cakes for breakfast over here but we opted for fresh fruit and yoghurt.

Today we went on a cruise in the Tigre Delta, which are islands in the river. There are alot of different types of houses from average to grand. There are schools on islands and the children are picked up by boat buses and taken to and from school. Education in Argentina is free for all however there are also private schools. Tonight we go to our farewell dinner and tango show which should be nice. It is hard to believe we are nearly ready to go home however all good things come to an end and this has certainly been a wonderful holiday.

Tomorrow we leave the hotel at 2.45 pm Argentina time to go to Chile then Auckland and back to Brisbane on Tuesday Australian time.

We hope you enjoyed seeing what we have been up to as much as we have enjoyed showing you.

See you all soon

From us all.

Posted by Nors Stephens 13:54 Archived in Argentina Comments (0)

Day 17


sunny 24 °C

The weather couldnt be more perfect. The parts of Buenos Aires we have seen yesterday and today are so flat it is so different to all the mountains in the other places we have been. It is very green here as there was alot of rain last week more than average for this time of year. Most of the trees around where we have been here are introduced and even eucalyptus tree here as well. Saw some weeping willow trees today.

The ranch was so much fun and lots of laughing. Some of us stayed in cottage type accomodation and others is the castle. All was really comfortable. We have been eating local foods where ever we go as you can see by the BBQ which was cooked for us. We had horse riding, carriage rides available, bikes to ride, dogs to talk to, lots of walking to do and birds to look at. Just a wonderful rest if you wanted.

Beer and wine is so cheap here in Argentina so plenty being drunk by some. Local custom drinks in each place have been tried by us all including here. Very interesting but the drink we tried today was non alcholic but is supposed to help with digestion. The guide from here is local. We had a dance show today by some of the staff and also a horse show which was lots of fun. Tomorrow we are doing a tour of the city which is very busy. Outside our hotel is a 14 lane road. Typical peak hour traffic.

Its very late so more for you all tomorrow.

From us all


Posted by Nors Stephens 19:52 Archived in Argentina Comments (1)

Day 16

Rio - Buenos Aires

rain 20 °C

Hi all,

Its a travel day today very busy up at 4am. Sitting at San Paulo airport and have 30 min internet. Had fabulous time at Rio the statue was fabulous. Cable car also brilliant.

Send extensive message when next on Wifi.

From us all.

Posted by Nors Stephens 05:59 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

Day 14


sunny 34 °C

Wow another wonderful day. Visited Iguazu Falls, they are amazing. We did the Brazil side today as the park is closed tomorrow for a marathon race Will do the Argentinean side tomorrow. As there was a heavy rainfall a month or so ago some of the walkway was closed but what we saw was wonderful. There was an animal on the pathway and boy are they nosey, you cannot take food in your bag or they will try and get it. Not sure of the name of it. The falls are just so amazing, nothing could describe the feeling being there. We went up in a helicopter and what a perfect day for it. The river that feeds the waterfull is massive which was realised when we were above. Others in the group did the boat ride which took them under the waterfall. After that amazing experience we went to a bird park. The toucans, blue macaws and other birds and butterflies where so beautiful. They were not all in averies but the wire made it hard to take photos when they were. Some photos maybe a bit blurry but only from my camera. We all touched a boa constricter and had a blue macaw sitting on each of our arms. After the bird park it was back to the hotel for local cocktail and some of us had a swim.

Each day has been wonderful so far. Hope you all well. Over half way now and another early morning up at 5am tomorrow.

Love to you all from all of us.

Posted by Nors Stephens 18:34 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

Day 13

Lima to Iquaza Falls

sunny 34 °C

Travel day today from Lima to Iquaza Falls. It was 7pm before we arrived at hotel. We flew over Lake Titicaca, it is massive from the air and could see the Puma's head as it has the shape of a Puma. Also flew over a large city which I have been told was Bolivia. Very dry looking from the plane. When we arrived we had the warmth of home. The hotel is a resort style and you can swim 24 hours. Pool bar and dining area plus there are 2 other restaurants. Perfect place to relax although early rise tomorrow and go to the Braziian side of the falls. We have 1.2 klm walk then we are able to go in the boat to the falls, helicopter and bird park. We will do 2 of the 3 but not sure what yet. No more Pisco sours as that is a Chile and Peru drink. Competition to see who is best.
We will also miss the coco tea. It is a drink you have to help with altitude sickness and tummy upsets. When we arrived anywhere in Peru thay offer you coco tea. Was sad to leave Peru as the people are so lovely.

Well as we have lost 2 hours time to sleep.

No photos as was all travel. Sorry will make up for it tomorrow?.

Posted by Nors Stephens 19:47 Archived in Brazil Comments (0)

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