If you want to go to from Stuttgart to Amsterdam to Stuttgart and you do not want to spend more than 100€ you have a few options.
Hitch Hike: Free but one can not be sure to arrive at the same day
Ride sharing: Quite fast but you need somebody that goes both ways at the day you want to travel
The bus: Easy since you do not have to change from Stuttgart to Amsterdam. Not a lot of space
The train: You have to change 6 times. You can walk while changing and have more space.
So once again I took the train for 89€ something. Was close to take the bus but the last time I did German police did a drug search on the highway. Not even after the border – a stop later. That took over two hours. And the bus trip is slow in the first place. No such thing in the train – I wonder why?? How come they stop the buses and no check in the train? Take a dog and walk the train – it is so easy and you can do it while the train is moving!
And the train is a bit faster than the bus – if (IF) the train is on time. Which usually it is not. The cheap ticket is only for the day and trains that are listed on your ticket. If there is a delay of more than 20 minutes you can take any train. A few times I could switch into a fast train and saved a lot of changing trains and time!
Outside at the train station in Oberhausen. Imagine this is what you see when you come home! Since it was a booze free vacation I could not even drown my sorrows in beer at the Trinkhalle.
There is one more thing about the train ride – the train goes along the Rhine river for a while. That must be the most scenic part in Germany you can do on rails. Old small villages on the side the train goes up. The river on your right (or left when you come back from Amsterdam) and lots of old villages and castles on the other side.
Along the Rhine river
Next train – this one will cross into Holland
Switch trains again in Arnhem
And one more time in Utrecht. Not even do you have 4G as soon as you pass the border. All the national railway trains do have free WiFi which makes the journey more bearable. Sure enough I look out of the window but when you drive this one a few times it will get less and less interesting. Its nice to read some mails, facebook a bit or scan the news sites.
Finally – the outskirts of Amsterdam. Dee and Gerben picked me up at the station and we left for the country side.
My home for a week in Monnickendam
My ride for the next week. I would love to have my green one here. This one is a bit small and very very heavy.
Flat but if the wind comes from the front this bike kills me
Broek in Waterland
The guys at the market stand
The Singing Sheep
On the way back to the camper I passed a few sheep. I stopped to take a look at them. One sheep asked me where I was from so we talked for a while.
Wanna hear my mate sing?
The sheep where on holiday here. They come from Friesland or Frisia. If the Dutch speak to me I understand most of it since it is close to German. Some is a bit more difficult with the Frisians from the northwestern part of the Netherlands but I works as well. After the song I was quite impressed and pedaled the rest of the way with a big grin on my face.
The monkey likes cold water
The next day
It was blue, warm and sunny! I managed to find the week where Dutch summer takes place. It usually only lasts for a day but it is great!
The pool from our campground
Summer in ze Dutchland
Back in Amsterdam
I enjoyed the quite mornings at the camp ground. The guys left quite early so I could sleep again. After that a nice hot shower and coffee. There was a camper parked across but the guy did not sleep at the campground. And there was one parked round the corner – never saw the woman who stayed there.
And after my coffee I did the dishes every day.
If you ever think to marry a Thai girl and love camping – think again! She does a few dishes every evening – any leftovers go into containers in the fridge and end up as snacks for the next day. So you have almost everything you use to cook or eat in the camper on a big dirty pile every day. That results in doing dishes for 30 minutes or more every day.
Next stop Schipol
On the way to Amsterdam
Only cows, a few sheep’s and some water birds till you get really close to Amsterdam. This camp ground is a bit further from the city than the one from last year. Last year I was walking just under 1 hour to the ferry for the train station. Now it takes about 40 minutes with the bike.
View down the Rustenburgerstraat
That was a beautiful art deco theater and is a Rijksmonument. Now it houses a coffee place
I take that picture every time when I am in Amsterdam. The globes get old now