Realistically, this city shouldn’t even exist.
As our plane descends, Amsterdam appears out of the clouds, laced by water like veins. It is a field divided by water fences.
Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport sits four meters below sea level, according to Holland.com. Feats of engineering have kept Holland, also known as the Netherlands, safe from the ocean for years, setting the standard for other ocean-bordered cities to follow.
Rather than fight the water, the Dutch have used it to their advantage. The iconic mills, both wind and water, are linked to the water. The canals are streets in and of themselves. Boats line them like cars parked on a busy street. It is a parallel water transportation network.
With all that water, it’s no wonder Amsterdam has over 1200 bridges. We crossed quite a few.