Friday, December 24, 2010

From Amsterdam Schiphol to Paris Nord

Don't you think Amsterdam is such a beautiful place? I'm not sure about the scenery in Summer but during Winter, I think this picture looks perfect! It's such a picturesque sight as they are many canals running through the city. And how often do you see swans in a city?

We put up a night's stay at Radisson Blu Hotel which is just about 6 minutes walk away from De Wallen, the infamous Red Light district in Amsterdam. There is no train going into this hotel but you can always get a cab to the hotel from the Amsterdam central station which is located 2 km away.

The rooms we had was quite satisfactory. I had a deluxe room with twin beds. The room is clean although not too spacious. The bathroom is in tip-top condition too and an electric kettle is also provided for your complimentary tea and coffee. The rate for this room is around €150++ which is not inclusive of breakfast.

Radisson Blu Hotel


Tel: 31-20-623-1231
Fax: 31-20-520-8200

The view from my hotel room

When we were busy taking nice pictures of the scenery, this mean boss of mine decided to bombard us with snow balls! And of course in retaliation, I made some snowballs and threw it at him! (and risk my bonus and performance review ratings) haha...

Snow war!

Initially we are supposed to have 2 nights at Amsterdam but due to the heavy snow and traffic jam from Veghel to Amsterdam, we decided to stay one more night at Veghel. And after one night, my colleague and I adjourned to our trip to Paris and my boss flew back to Singapore. We were so afraid that our journey will be cancelled as many trains are not operating and airlines are cancelling most of the flights.

We were praying hard hoping that our schedule is as planned and this includes walking to and fro to check the train schedule and braving the long queues at the information counter just to confirm that my train to Paris is going ahead as planned.

It's very cold at the terminal and we were sitting here since 1 hour ago to make sure we didn't miss our train.

We took Thalys which offers the route from Schiphol to Rotterdam and then to Brussels before stopping at Paris Nord. You have to be at the terminal early as the train only stopped for about 10-15mins for us to get on board.

I took Comfort 1 class on Thalys. The comfort 1 provides food and drinks and also free WiFi on board. It's a little expensive because I remembered I paid €149 for my 1 way ticket to Paris and the bummer is that the website do not take other credit cards outside Europe. I had to ask my european colleague to help me book a ticket.

The food were rather cold. Don't expect them to operate like an airline but the seats are indeed big and comfortable. The worst has arrived! The train broke down in the middle of nowhere and we were stuck in the train for 3 hours before it can operate again. There were just too much travel disruptions during my trip to Europe this time from missing my flight to broken trains. Sigh...

The scenery is indeed beautiful.

It's something we don't get to see back at home so I didn't sleep during the journey.

Despite all the travel mishaps, I am still lucky to be able to go to Paris as planned. It was indeed an experience for me traveling in europe at this time of the year where the weather is unpredictable and the snow that disrupts all the traveling!

Merry Xmas everyone and have a wonderful Xmas eve tonight!


foongpc said...

Merry Xmas & Happy New Year!!

foongpc said...

Nice view from the hotel and nice view from inside the train!

Wow! So many travel mishaps? What an experience traveling at this time of the year!

M-Knight said...

Merry Christmas....

Anonymous said...

do you have any photos from the red light district?

sckhoo said...

brilliant picture. Happy holiday to you too.

Sean said...

walking in a winter wonderland! :D
i don't remember seeing those swans a few months ago ... wonder where they were hiding then =)

Anonymous said...

Burberry bag from London? Hermes from Paris?

boo_licious said...

Merry Xmas! Have a delicious holiday.

Anonymous said...

what airlines did you fly to europe? any idea about klm?

eiling lim said...

Foongpc: Hey, Merry Xmas & a happy new year to you too! Don't travel during winter, the weather is just unpredictable during this time.

M-Knight: Merry Xmas to you too!

Anon: You can't take photos at the red light district.

Sckhoo: Thanks and Merry Xmas!

Sean: maybe they were all eaten up! haha

Anon: It's burberry from Japan and no Hermes.

Boolicious: Merry Xmas to you too!

Anon: I took MAS to London and then KLM to Amsterdam. The KLM has really bad customer service, their lounge at Heathrow 4 sucks too and some of the ground staff has terrible attitudes.

suituapui said...

Oooo...such lovely picturesque sights! I love western countries...the places, the buildings and the snow makes everything even more beautiful. Wouldn't wanna be there in winter though - so cold. LOL!!!

Anonymous said...

in amsterdam. the snow is still on the ground.

the palace is under renovation. not many interesting places here

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