Your Guide to Amsterdam

This may or may not, be the most useless blog to be written simply due to the fact that literally every Tom, Dick and Harry has been Amsterdam at this point but I feel as though I can offer some useful advice to those who haven’t been to the city or even plan on going back. Continue on reading for some ideas on places to stay, eat and visit as I am a very sad individual who has visited the city 7 times…and counting.

This may sound cheesy but Amsterdam is my happy place. I am very fortunate to have visited many different countries and cities around the world in my 22 years of being alive, however, Amsterdam is somewhere I will always go back to.

I am going to keep this as appropriate as possible so in other words, find the ‘coffee shops’ yourself, I’m not helping you with that one.

Anyway, lets get into it…

 

Places to Stay

ID Aparthotel Sloterdijk

I have stayed here 7/7 times I have visited Amsterdam so I can’t actually recommend anywhere else. And to be honest, I can’t recommend this place enough! ID Aparthotel is located in Sloterdijk, just outside of Amsterdam Central. The hotel is a 2-minute walk to the train station and then 5 minutes on the train into the centre. Staying outside of Amsterdam Central allows you to save some money as the hotels in the centre tend to be a little more expensive. However, the rooms in this hotel is something you won’t experience elsewhere. These hotel rooms are designed as actual apartments equipped kitchen and living spaces and they are huge and very affordable. I find that it is easiest to book through booking.com

 

Places to Eat

Vegan Junk Food Bar

This place is a MUST!  Whether you are a vegan or not, you need to try here!

Vegan Junk Food Bar is a plant based restaurant and you wouldn’t even know it! My boyfriend and I both eat meat and we still couldn’t believe how realistic it tasted. In the photo below you can see; a ‘beef’ burger, a ‘chicken’ burger, loaded ‘chicken’ fries and fried ‘shrimp’. (We were hungry, don’t judge).

There are 5 different Vegan Junk Food Bars located throughout Amsterdam, meaning that you are more than likely never far from at least one. There is usually a queue for a table but trust me, it’s worth it.

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Greenwoods

If you are after a good breakfast or lunch in Amsterdam, Greenwoods will definitely sort you out. Offering homemade Irish soda bread, this place is hard to beat. For a European menu, the menu is quite recognisable with dishes such as Eggs Benedict, Classic Fish and Chips and The Full English Breakfast. There are two Greenwood restaurants in Amsterdam and they are seriously worth visiting. mmm…

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Food Hallen

A foodies dream!

Food Hallen is an unbelievable indoor food market serving a range high-end street food and beverages in the urban Oud-West neighbourhood of Amsterdam. This food hall has everything you could think of from wood-fired pizzas, to Japanese Sushi, to Greek Mezze to Artisanal Burgers. Amsterdam’s best-loved kitchens are located right here.

Think St. George’s Market on steroids…

The hall also has a large seating area and bars to allow you to enjoy your food and take it all in. A great way to spend an evening in Amsterdam.

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Things to do

Red Light Secrets Museum

It is inevitable that you will visit the Red Light District whether its for a nosey or to pay for the services provided (no judgement here). However, somewhere really worth visiting is the Red Light Secrets Museum. Located in the heart of the Red Light District, this museum will give you an insight into the history of Amsterdam’s Red Light District and answer all your questions. Who chooses to work here? And why? How much money do they make? What happens when the curtains close? You can only really find out once you go inside…

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Anne Frank House

Honestly, in my opinion, this is not worth the hype. I was extremely excited to visit the Anne Frank House after years of learning about her story at school, however, I really didn’t think it was worth it. It felt that it lacked authenticity and information which meant that I wasn’t actually sure what I was actually looking at half of the time spent here. If you do decide to visit the attraction, be prepared to queue, we waited in one for 3 hours, not ideal.

Sex Museum

…no words to be honest. Visit the sex museum if you are up for a laugh and don’t cringe too easily. Entry fee is only €5. No pictures for this one either, use your imagination and multiply it by 10.

Vondelpark 

Vondelpark is the largest and most famous park in Amsterdam which usually welcomes around 10 million visitors a year. If you visit Amsterdam in the summer, I would recommend renting a bike and cycling around the park. It’s beautiful and nearby to the Van Gough Museum and Rijksmuseum if you fancy visiting them as well. It’s also free.

 

            Some Friendly Tips

  • DO NOT walk in the bicycle lane or jay walk – Amsterdam cyclists are crazy and you will certainly be hit if you don’t be careful.
  • REMEMBER to lock your bike up – bike thieves are ruthless in Amsterdam so if you rent a bike, be sure to lock it up.
  • DO NOT take pictures of the women in the windows at the Red Light District- have some respect.
  • ENJOY YOURSELF!

 

Laura Magennis is a final year BSc in Communication Management and Public Relations student at Ulster University. She can be found on LinkedIn @LauraMagennis

Gone are the days when children dreamed of becoming doctors and nurses – today’s children want to become You Tubers and Vloggers

You Tubers. I mean, I would imagine that most would be aware of what a You Tuber is nowadays but incase you have indeed been living under a rock for the last 10 years, here is a quick explanation of what exactly a You Tuber is…

The explanation of a You Tuber tends to split todays society in half as the definition can vary between two. For example:

Sourced by the ever so trustworthy Urban Dictionary…

‘SomeoneWhoMakesDefinitions’ defines a YouTuber as “Someone who uploads You Tube videos, particularly someone who has some what of a fan base. Although it can mean anyone in YouTube, it specifically means someone who makes videos.”  Whilst, ‘AKACroatalin’, defines a You Tuber as “Someone who posts clips or pontificates on You Tube. Usually a brain-dead nonentity with no friends who is idolised by cretinous preteens who have no life.”

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You can make up your own mind.

It may seem surprising that this activity even pays enough to be taken as a full-time job but it is important to understand that the figures vary depending on many different factors.  For most You Tube channels, it can take more than a few years before they start seeing a consistent income through the use of online advertising, sponsored brand posts via Instagram and by earning money through their amount of views per video.

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British beauty and fashion vlogger, Zoe Sugg, better known as Zoella has an estimated net worth of £2.5 Million as of 2019. She first began her channel in 2009 and currently has almost 5 Million subscribers to her main channel.

According to CelebsNow, You Tube vloggers earn approximately ‘£0.0007 per view’ and Zoella’s channels average out to 22 million clicks per month, resulting to monthly earnings of £15,000.  CelebsNow also reported that her written blog Zoella.co.uk makes around £4,000 per month from ads alone, with approximately 7.4 million clicks each month. Zoe & her boyfriend, Alfie Deyes who also happens to be a YouTuber even have their own wax figures in Madame Tussauds, London!

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I have actually seen these in real life and I can confirm, they are just as creepy in real life as they are in this picture.

But where is the downfall with all of this? Why should we be worried about young children aspiring to be You Tubers?

Due to the likes of Zoella and many others, you may find that a large amount of young teens today when asked ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’, they will answer ‘A YouTube Star’.

A recent survey by LEGO & Harris to mark the 50th anniversary of the moon landing showed that children were three times more likely to want to become a YouTube Star than an astronaut. Only 11% of 8-12 year olds said that they wanted to work for NASA whilst 29% said they wanted to show their life through content online. Five of the top ten earning You Tubers in 2018 were men who filmed themselves playing video games which results in thousands of young boys having a new ambition – playing video games. This is something  that’s widely seen as grim.

“Gone are the days when children dreamed of becoming doctors and nurses – today’s children want to become You Tubers and vloggers,” wrote the Daily Mail in 2017.

And to be honest, I find this is absolutely terrifying! I fully understand that it can be a great outlet for those who flourish when it comes to creativity but we all know how hateful the online world can be and how much of an effect it has on large amount of people’s mental health, especially young people! Some may argue that it’s no different than a child wanting to become a famous athlete, singer or actor but I disagree. People in these jobs can switch off, however, You Tubers & Social Influencers cannot as their life is online.

Children and young teen’s interests no longer lie with getting outside to play with their friends and roll in the mud as quickly as they possibly can, it’s all about getting onto their iPads and iPhones to look up their next You Tube video.

All I can say is that I will forever be thankful that I was born in 1997 and somewhat avoided the deep dark hole of social media at a young age.

 

Laura Magennis is a final year BSc in Communication Management and Public Relations Student at Ulster University. She can be found on LinkedIn at  linked.com/in/laura-magennis-035529157/