Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Dutch engineering—its dams, sea gates, and the 19-mile dyke walling out the Zuider Zee—prevent this low-lying country from being reclaimed by the North Sea. The marsh that originally surrounded Amsterdam has steadily disappeared beneath the expanding city, where many of the buildings are supported by an estimated five million wood caissons driven into the mire.
Vibrant, fascinating and always alive, Amsterdam is imbued with the quality the Dutch call "gezelligheid." Explore the city's 700-year-old streets, marvel at its stepped-gable houses, cruise down its bustling canals, and browse its colorful flower markets.
Amsterdam's central landmark and best place for people-watching is also the site of the ancient dam that protected the fledgling city from fierce North Sea storms.
Anne Frank's House
For two years Anne Frank and her family hid from the Nazis in this house's secret annex.
Volendam & Marken
These centuries-old villages are noted for picturesque houses, shops and canals.
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