03/07/2024

Top Travel Hosts Dr Fezile Mkhize and Dr Anesu Mbizvo Unpack Why Amsterdam Is A Dream Travel Destination For South Africans

Johannesburg, 2 July 2024 | The vibrant city of Amsterdam played host to the exciting season finale of Top Travel. Hosts Dr. Fezile Mkhize and Dr. Anesu Mbizvo explored the stunning sights and cultural riches of Amsterdam, showcasing why this city should be at the top of every South African’s travel list.

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Amsterdam, known for its picturesque canals, historic architecture, and lively cultural scene, is a perfect travel destination for South Africans seeking a blend of history, art, and adventure. The city remains a popular tourist destination for South African travellers thanks to a quick and convenient flight from either Cape Town or Johannesburg on KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. With direct flights and top-notch service, KLM ensures that travellers arrive refreshed and ready to explore all that Amsterdam has to offer.

As the new season of Top Travel officially comes to an end, Fez and Anesu reflect on their trip to Amsterdam and highlight why this city should be on every South African’s travel bucket list.

Your adventures in Amsterdam looked incredible! What was your favourite part about visiting this vibrant city?

Fez: There were too many parts to single one out. From the rich history to the numerous canals that frame the city and its phenomenal architecture, Amsterdam is a visual feast – and the people are incredibly friendly as well.

Anesu: Amsterdam is an incredible city! For me, my favorite part of the city was experiencing the beautiful architecture and canals while cycling through the city. The bicycle culture sets this city apart and seeing all of the city people going about their day by bike felt really special.

What surprised you the most about Amsterdam?

Fez: I was taken aback by the co-existence of the cycling culture within the city with the vehicles that are there. From the designated lanes to the laws to abide by when it comes to pedestrians and vehicles with the cyclists. It really is a part of the city’s culture.

Anesu: I was really surprised to learn about the engineering of the city and how the Dutch created Amsterdam below sea level by meticulously managing the water levels within the canals. Knowing this made me feel like we were exploring a modern-day Atlantis!

Why do you think Amsterdam is one of the most visited cities in the world today?

Fez: It has so many draws, so you can find any and everything your heart desires from art and culture with its numerous museums, galleries, and other cultural institutions to its rich history, and many visitors come to see its architectural and artistic landmarks. There is an endless list of attractions and having had a taste of the incredible city I can attest to its amazing hospitality.

Anesu: I think the uniqueness of Amsterdam is what makes it one of the most visited cities. The architecture is beautiful and the quirky nature of the leaning houses gives the entire city a whimsical feel, while the network of canals and obvious presence of water grounds the city and gives it a peaceful atmosphere. It’s like no other city on earth.

You visited The Netherlands during its famous tulip season. What was it like visiting the world-famous Keukenhof flower garden?

Fez: Visiting the Keukenhof Botanical Garden during its spring showcase is spectacular. It is breathtaking walking through and seeing millions of flowers on the backdrop of such an expansive landscape with so many people also appreciating the dazzling spectacle. I gained a new respect for floriculture and the beauty it brings into the world.

Anesu: As an avid lover of all things plants and gardening, visiting The Netherlands during tulip season and being able to visit Keukenhof felt like a dream come true! The tulip gardens are bursting with colour and learning about all of the time and effort taken to plant the seven million bulbs each year was incredible! The garden itself is endless so being able to spend an entire day outside in nature, enjoying the sun while looking at all of the beautiful tulip varieties was a wonderful experience.

Did you try any traditional Dutch foods? If so, what was your favourite?

Fez: We got to taste the incredible cheese and see the process that goes into making high-quality cheese within the context of the Netherlands which really gave us an appreciation of the many points of consideration that go into such delicious produce.

Anesu: I have always been a cheese lover so we made a point to visit a family-run cheese farm! Apart from learning the heart-warming story of how the family grew their small business into a successful enterprise, being able to taste all of the different varieties of cheeses was absolutely delicious!

Visiting Amsterdam has never been easier for South Africans. Tell us more about the journey to visiting the city.

Fez: The journey over to Amsterdam was one of my highlights as KLM made the flight seamless and with such incredible on-flight service and amenities it really was an enjoyable way to travel to a phenomenal city. There were so many movies and series to choose from the on-flight selection that I didn’t feel the time fly by.

Anesu: Visiting Amsterdam has never been easier! KLM has direct flights to Amsterdam from both Johannesburg and Cape Town and offers friendly and efficient service on all of their aircraft. The flight is seamless and comfortable making traveling to this magical city an absolute delight.

What advice would you give to someone planning their first trip to Amsterdam?

Fez: You don’t need to find accommodation right in the heart of the city to enjoy all of the culture and many sites to see as there is also excellent public transport in the form of trams and renting bikes to move through the city is a must as it also gives you such a different perspective and that’s what traveling and being in different spaces is all about.

Anesu: While the city itself is quite small, definitely spend as much time as you can in Amsterdam! The city has so much to offer and having the time to explore the boutique shops, enjoy the bicycle culture and cruise on the canals is an absolute must. You’ll also want to have time to visit some of the smaller towns close to the city like Delft for their famous pottery. The more time you can put aside for your stay here the better, the city has a knack of blossoming and revealing her secrets the more you explore so the more time you have, the better.

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