I managed to pull myself out of bed at a reasonable time this morning, get dressed, and headed out the door to do the three hour walking tour. I mismanaged my timing a bit, as I had to be there by 11.15am. I didn't reach the tour until 11.30am, but fortunately they were still at the square so I was able to tag on. It started at the Dam Square. This building was the dutch palace, however the royal family no longer live there, but it's still used for functions and overseas dignitaries....
Down a narrow street an we came to the red light district. Very nice looking ladies dressed in next to nothing stood in the windows and beckoned to the men. For obvious reasons, we couldn't take photos. I believe the starting price is 50 euros for about 10 minutes, and that won't get you very far, so if you intend to travel to Amsterdam for the ladies, make sure you pack your wallets up very thickly with euros!
We were allowed to take a photo of this sculpture, which apparently just appeared one night from nowhere. No one knows who the artist is, and it sums up the red light district well, with the lady who is anonymous, the male who is anonymous, and the artist also anonymous - the way they like the district to be.
The Amsterdam Waag is a remnant of the former city walls in Amsterdam. Constructed in 1488, it was originally one of the city gates, the Sint Anthoniespoort. When the city wall disappeared, the Nieuwmarkt (new market) was created around it and the weighing scales for the market were placed in the former gate. Today the building houses the Waag Society, an ICT research foundation working in the social and cultural domain, and there is a café/restaurant on the ground floor.
The building carries the oldest plaque in Amsterdam, which reads On 28 April 1488 the first stone of this gate was laid....
A measure of how wealthy one was, was how wide your house was. This house is one of the widest in Amsterdam from a family that made their money making and selling arms to both sides of the war.
This is now the university, but prior to that it housed the Dutch East India Trading Company.