The short Cityhopper between Humberside airport in the Midlands of the UK and Schiphol Airport, outside of Amsterdam took virtually no time at all – due to the flight lasting only an hour and the one hour time change. Good thing it was short as Nico decided the insides of his dog bed would be better on the outside and filled his crate with stuffing.
Arriving in the Netherlands we intended to pick up the AlfaSud at the mechanic outside of Utrecht but he needed more time to fix some serious rust issues inside the engine bay area. Without wheels, we took the train directly from AMS to our rental apartment in the center of the small but very busy city of Alkmaar and meet up with our fellow travelers from the UK.
The apartment was several levels up, over a crepe shop and many cafes. The close proximity of bars and cafes was very helpful as Alkmaar is primarily a pedestrian city due to its very narrow streets and extremely limited parking. During our stay in Alkmaar we made a few out-of-town trips via the fast and efficient Dutch rail / bus lines. With the temperatures high we spent a day in beach resort of Egmond aan Zee and found most of the country had the same idea. A trip to the Molen museum via bike was quite an adventure with again high temps and a longer then expected ride through the beautiful Dutch countryside. Another day-trip to the city of Utrecht was another excuse to eat more patat, visit some museums, take a canal tour and eat more apple cake. A self guided canal boat trip in Alkmaar was a highlight as a certain young captain had difficulty navigating a tunnel and bumped into a wall.