Showing posts from June, 2012

Day 2 : Amsterdam (15 June 2008)

We were up early on the second day (15 June 2008) of our Contiki tour. It was raining outside and at 7:45 we had breakfast in the hotel in Amsterdam.   A lot of people were late for the bus and at about 8:50 we drove into the city.   The bus dropped us close to the   Anne Frank Museum .   We followed other members of our group but they took a wrong turn and we walked the long way to the museum. At about 9:00 we were waiting in a line to enter the museum but we it gave us time to take photos of the Prinsengracht.   Anne Frank was a Jewish girl who wrote a dairy while in hiding during the Second World War.   She was in hiding with her family and another family in the Prinsengracht building that now houses the museum.   Prinsengracht Row outside Anne Frank House We walked through the hiding place.   The rooms are empty and looks big but must have been very crampt with 8 people living inside it. I read “The Dairy of Anne Frank” about a year before we visited the museum and it

PE : St George’s Park

Around St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth you can find a more of the sites on the Donkin Heritage Trail. The Cenotaph The Cenotaph stands on the outside of the park in front of the art museums.   This War memorial was opened on 10 November 1929.   It was built to commemorate the men and women who were killed in the First World War. After the Second World War panels were added.   James Gardner of the PE Art School sculpted it.   The lower portion represents the earthly life and the upper portion heavenly life.   The base has the shape of a sarcophagus around which runs a relief panel.   On the one side is the figure of St George with his foot on a dead dragon to show he has done his duty to protect.   On the other side is a mother and children to symbolise the warrior’s wife protecting their home. Pearson Conservatory The Victorian Pearson Conservatory was opened on 12 September 1882.   It was named after Mr. HW Pearson who was the mayor of Port Elizabeth at the ti

PE : Terrace Houses

Port Elizabeth has a lot of old Terrace Houses.   We saw some of the houses as part of the Donkin Heritage Trail and Richmond Hill Trail.   Some are in a better condition because of restoration.   They look so pretty when painted in different colours and I think I could spend a lot of time on the balconies with their views of the bay. Cora Terrace The Cora Terrace is a row of seven town houses facing a lane.   It was built on land granted to Henry Watson.   He died in 1834 in the 6 th Frontier War.   His widow Eliza married Joseph Smith and the houses were built from 1858 to 1866.   The terrace was named Cora after Eliza and Joseph’s 16-year old daughter who died at sea when returning from England. Donkin Street Houses This row of eighteen terraced houses was built between 1860 and 1890.   The whole row was declared a National Heritage site in 1967.   The houses are built in the Victorian style with cast iron decorations.  

Day 1 : Amsterdam Canal Cruise (14 June 2008)

At 19:45 we left from the Lakeland Hotel with the bus to Amsterdam city for a canal cruise.   The cruise is also called the booze cruise because the drinks are free.   At the beginning of the cruise each person got a shot “Flugel” and later some Heineken beer. We spend 1.5 hours on a boat floating through the canals of Amsterdam. According to our tour guide there are 1,2 million bicycles in Amsterdam but only 800 000 people.   We passed a few of the tourist attractions in Amsterdam.   Here are some pictures:  The VOS Ship “Amsterdam”  Montelbaanstoren Westerkerk Anne Frank House The canal cruise ended at about 23:30 but we decided not to go back to the hotel yet.    Four of us went for a walk through Amsterdam’s Red Light District.   This was an experience.   The girls are in lingerie in their booths and tries to attract men.   The streets are busy with curious tourists and men who sit and watch. At about 23:30 we took a cab back to the hotel.   The c

Day 1 : London to Amsterdam (14 June 2008)

On Saturday 14 June 2008 we were up early to get ready for Europe.   We went downstairs to weigh our bags at about 7:45.   At about 8:15 the Contiki bus left London.   We drove from London to Dover where we had to wait for the ferry.   While we waited some officers came unto the bus to check our passports.   The bus then drove unto the ferry and at 10:05 we started crossing the canal. The trip on the ferry took about 1,5 hours.  The ferry is huge and has lots to do.  We walked around for a while and took some photo's of the white cliffs of Dover.  Then we bought some food and relaxed the rest of the trip to France.   We got back on the bus and drove of the ferry and  through a part of France.   While riding we played a game of “Speed dating”.   The bus has 4 seats in each row with a isle in the center.   The person sitting next to the isle had to move every minute.   So we met 50% of the people traveling with us.   It was a lot of nice people from all over the world (SA