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may 18 2016

Confessions of a Singing Tour Guide

There's no place on earth quite like Amsterdam, and there's no tour guide quite like "Amster Jan."

(Lonely Planet)

Jan Tervoort, known as “Amster Jan,” will lead you on a walking tour of Amsterdam and serenade you with traditional Dutch folk songs along the way. Here, his insider hints for visiting the uniquely gorgeous city.

Q: What inspired you to become a singing tour guide?
A: I fell in love with Amsterdam when I moved here 12 years ago and started giving tours to friends who were visiting, then decided to go professional. The city’s tourist industry is very competitive, so I needed something to stand out. I brought along my guitar and sang old folk songs. I’m still the only singing tour guide in the city.

feb 22 2016

European Style for $17/Night! Hip Hostels to Open in Amsterdam, Stockholm, and Rome

Amsterdam Canal

Float down an Amsterdam canal during the day, then hang out with new friends at a Generator property at night.


Dreaming about visiting Europe this year? We have good news that might encourage you to hit that "book" button, especially if you're a solo traveler. Design-focused Generator, a line of chic, affordable European hostels, is opening three new locations in Amsterdam, Stockholm, and Rome, just in time for the peak season.

feb 04 2016

Spring Trips to Book NOW

Spring break in Mexico? Yes, you can!

(Lonely Planet)

Sure, the snow is still falling, but that doesn’t mean you can only dream about your spring getaway. We've lined up some great deals that you have to jump on right away:

TULUM, MEXICO is the “quiet side” of the popular Riviera Maya, a tranquil Caribbean beach town that’s more affordable and less crowded than its rowdy neighbor Cancun mid-March through April. Hit the warm spring beaches, tropical forests, and the ancient Mayan pyramids. BedandBreakfast.com has rentals starting at under $100.

jul 18 2015

WOW Air Offers $99 Flights to Paris & Amsterdam

Canals in Amsterdam

At press time, there were just a handful of $99 flights still available from Boston to Amsterdam in November and January.

(Courtesy kpm1031/myBudgetTravel)

Last week, WOW Air made big news when it released $99 fares from Boston and Washington D.C. to Paris and Amsterdam. If something like that doesn't kick your insatiable wanderlust into overdrive, I don't know what will.

jun 17 2015

15 Dances to Learn Around the World

hula girl dancing at a luau oahu hawaii

Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to learn the hula in Hawaii!

(Courtesy Ray_from_LA/Flickr)

This article was written by the Viator Travel Team on behalf of Viator.com.

Great art isn’t always found in museums. Dance varies from place to place, yet remains a constant way for people to express themselves. Whether performed in a grand theater or on a street corner, dance can be emotional, tell tales, or be a way to celebrate. Whatever the reason or venue, the rhythm is out to get you. Grab your passport and take on a calorie burning challenge with these dances to watch and learn around the world.

Samba in Brazil

nov 19 2014

The "Starry Night" Bike Path Is Like Nothing You've Ever Seen

What's your favorite painting? Hold that image in your mind for a sec, then imagine the brushstrokes, shapes, and colors brought to life—so you could actually walk right in. Whoa. Right?

Dutch artist Daan Roosegaarde has brought my favorite painting to life in a unique way that melds contemporary technology with a masterpiece of 19th-century art: Vincent Van Gogh's "Starry Night." The Starry Night Bike Path, a winding half-mile in the city of Eindhoven that is illuminated by thousands of LED lights and special paint, interprets the swirling shapes and colors of Van Gogh's painting. I don't know about you, but for me the work of Van Gogh is highly personal—as if the artist, with his dramatic strokes and thick layers of paint, is reaching out to me across the years, teaching me a new way to see and feel. I'm psyched that a contemporary artist is attempting to transport an audience in a similar way. Roosegaarde has spoken enthusiastically about how the path, which opened to the public on November 13, makes a statement about technology and cultural history—and is also a popular spot for first dates. What's not to love?

may 22 2014

What Are Your Favorite Things To Do In Amsterdam And Barcelona?

By this time next week, I'll be sailing the scenic canals of Amsterdam, strolling down the Seine in Paris, enjoying Swiss fondue for lunch, living the high life in Monaco, and seeing the Sagrada Familia, among other impressive Gaudi creations, in Barcelona. I'm going on vacation, this time with some friends on Contiki's 10-day Amsterdam to Barcelona tour, which also includes stops in Paris, Lucerne, and the French Riviera (do I really have to mention how excited I am about this trip?!) The good news is, you can come, too! Follow along with my adventures as I post photos from the road to our brand new Instagram page, @budgettravel.

apr 05 2013

Amsterdam's Rijksmuseum Reopens—Here's Where to Stay!

Budget Travel has four affordable Amsterdam hotels that will put you in the heart of the city.

(Courtesy kpm1031/myBudgetTravel)

On April 13, Amsterdam's Rijksmuseum will open its doors after a 10-year, nearly $500 million renovation. The 1885 structure has been restored to its 19th-century glory, with the added advantage of contemporary lighting and design that will literally put works by Rembrandt, Vermeer, and other Dutch Masters in an ideal light.

nov 14 2012

Could 'Marijuana Tourism' Be Next For Colorado and Washington?

A cafe in Amsterdam

Will towns in Colorado and Washington start building their own Amsterdam–style cafés?

(Courtesy JustineTheQueen/flickr)

With new legislation effectively legalizing marijuana for recreational use in two U.S. states, Amsterdam-style entertainment could be right around the corner. Under the new state measures in Colorado and Washington, marijuana is legal to use if you are at least 21 years old and possess no more than one ounce (or 28.5 grams) for recreational use. Similar to alcohol, the recreational marijuana would be taxed and sold only at state-licensed specialty retail stores. Public use is still forbidden in both states, and residents would now be permitted to grow up to six plants at home in Colorado (though home growing is not allowed in Washington). 

apr 20 2012

If Tourists Can't Buy Pot, Will Amsterdam Tourism Suffer?

An Amsterdam coffeeshop (Courtesy Michelle Baran)

Amsterdam is beloved for its canals, houseboats, museums, bikes, pancakes, and yes, for its cannabis. But a government plan to prohibit foreigners from buying marijuana in the Netherlands could put a damper on tourists' high.

The government has proposed a plan that would only allow Dutch residents, not foreigners, to purchase marijuana, The Associated Press reported.

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