The flight was long - 12 hours. I managed about 5 hours sleep and watched two movies. Thank you Air New Zealand for captioning a few. I was very pleased that I had something to do while awake and it certainly made the flight pass by quickly.
We landed in Shanghai at 7.30am in quite thick fog. The airport was massive and a very long walk to pick up my luggage and then over to another terminal to check in for the Amsterdam Leg. KLM wasn't a Star Alliance airline with Air New Zealand so I actually had to pick up my bag instead of it going straight through.
Shanghai was very foggy (smoggy?). And it was quite cool as well. By the time I had checked in my bag there actually wasn't a lot of time left. I had about an hour in which I took a few photos and checked out the souvenir shops and the food shops. Quite different food in China!
Anne was at the airport to meet me. Schipol Airport is great in the fact you can look through the glass and see the arrivals. Went straight through customs and I was there! Whoop :)
A quiet night in and an early night that first night.
Yesterday I decided to head to the Rijksmuseum. It had just opened after 10 years of being closed for refurbishment where they spent 375m euros. It was great - but they had no interactive guide for the deaf or hearing impaired, and the printed guide was only in dutch. I heard so many people ask for it in French, English etc...
However, it was amazing. The Netherlands Louvre. And it concentrated on the Dutch masters and history of the Netherlands in Art.
To get there I decided to walk as it wasn't too far from Anne and Jori's apartment. Grand houses lined hte canal, and new spring growth on the trees...
To make sure I wasn't lost I asked the way several times. The Dutch are extremely helpful. The last time I nearly walked past and kept going, but decided to just ask. I happened to be right over the road from the Museum but hadn't recognised it as it was the back of the building. Just as well I had asked! I crossed the road and walked through the middle of the building. I went straight through to other side to get the exterior images. I loved the arches.
Front view of building...
Big circular planters of tulips in the water feature - they were lovely, although they were being blown about a bit as it was very windy.
Inside the Museum I was able to take images without flash of some of the artworks. The exhibitions started in the middle ages and went through to current day. This is a genealogy book of the royal families around the world.
Portraiture of a group of tailors (I think - forgot to photograph the sign). However what was important about this artwork was each of the men were doing something with their hands which made it different from other portraits. I included the woman looking at it as she was also doing something with her hands!
I had been warned that there would be crowds at the museum because it had just opened. I wondered what the fuss was as I had hardly seen anyone. I found them all in the Rembrandt area....
And most were looking at this painting.... I have yet to find out what it is... This is why I needed an audio guide or printed guide!
I walked back to the flat, realising that I had left all the maps behind so was a tad worried that I would get lost. I decided to go a different way and found some more canals and streets of shops so it was quite fun.
More to come...