AHH! It’s here! My last post before Christmas! Although I was initially going to hold this one out until the new year, a few people have asked when it’ll be up- so I thought, if anyone has any festive trips across the continent planned, this one’s for you, kids.
It’s not the normal ‘Christmas send off’ post I’d do- getting all festive and reflective, but seeing as hopefully it’ll act as a bit of a resource (and there will be a big ol’ hearty one on New Years’ Eve) perhaps this is a little bit of reading and travel inspiration just before you can hopefully put your feet up for a bit (or plan a not-too-far-from-home January escape).
Anyway! Last week I headed over to Amsterdam for the evening with KGA Beauty for a press trip. It had been a good four years or so since my last trip, but seeing as I truly fell in love with the city last time- I was ridiculously excited to catch it just in time for Christmas, as I’d heard some very good things- and seen it’s quite the hub for all things bright, beautiful and twinkly (put it this way, I saw a guy wheel a Christmas tree on his bike and nearly fainted with glee).
And honestly? It was even more beautiful than I’d remembered. Sometimes I forgot how close we are here in London to some of the most stunning pockets of Europe, and Amsterdam truly is that. With the plane ride less than 45 minutes (still. not. over it), you could quite easily spend a day here- and it would absolutely be worth the yawns and bleary first-thing eyes to spend the day wandering around the canals and sitting al fresco outside some of the beautiful cafes.
And this time of year it feels a little bit other wordly too. Like you’re stepping into a film set, filtered come 4pm with a rosy warmth and a biting chill as you meander along the streets, hopping past bikes flying past and catching the houses in the Gingerbread dolls houses flicker on.
During our first evening, we spent sunset on a boat tour along the canals, and nosing inside the house boats and watching peoples lives from along the water was magical (a peepers PARADISE). It’s funny how a family watching the Lion King on the water packs a little more romance than it would on land, isn’t it? But catching a glimpse into other worlds, whilst listening to Christmas songs with a backdrop of fairy lights will do that to you, I suppose.
You Must Remember To Visit…
Oh my god THIS PLACE. If you’re a fan of delicate, beautiful jewels than this place is a total treasure trove, Decked out with home wares, vintage interior picks and cabinets of all things twinkly, gift giving is a total one stop shop here.
Possibly the best vintage we came across on our one night jaunt. This place is heaven. Beautifully curated, and never overpriced- there are rails of beautiful things- from one off specials to vintage Laura Ashley- swoon.
I know I’ve harped on about them here before, but the nightwear and undies here are unreal. There’s also their cafe next door, and everything is merchandised like a dream.
I was blown away by how perfectly located The Hoxton in Amsterdam was, and although we only popped in for lunch (which was A*), can’t recommend here enough for an afternoon tipple or somewhere to rest at the end of the day.
Whether you’re soaking up the culture, ice skating or just admiring it from along the river- this is a one stop shop for all things art and history and is absolutely stunning to boot.
I’m only half disappointed in myself that I noticed this place from it’s beautiful typography (oh god I’m a parody of myself) but this little French restaurant looks like a total dream, and next time I’ll be heading by with bells on.
There aren’t enough words to describe how much I love this place, but I’LL TRY. Stocking jewellery, home ware and clothing (every brand from Ganni to a cool young thing you’ve yet to discover), Anna + Nina is a total slice of heaven. Try leaving without a paper bag filled with goodies.
Okay one more! This place was BIG. The coat and beret selection was pretty remarkable, and I could have easily spent hours fawning over every item. It’s not a quick one to pop in to, but I can’t recommend stopping by enough.
One thing we did that was absolutely amazing was a boat cruise to admire the annual Festival of Light on Amsterdam’s waterways. Although you don’t have to experience this by boat, I can’t recommend it enough- and with so many tours going, it’s a completely magical and festive experience which is pretty unforgettable.
Have a very Merry Christmas everyone!