The Netherlands is where you go when you are finally retired and ready to contemplate fields
of tulips as a routine form of entertainment. It’s also where you go when weed, girls and biking
en mass is what makes sense in life for you, and this may be well before or well into your
retirement plans. The Netherlands is about as big as the state of Maryland (not big) and offers
more excitement than California. Legally, that is. It is one of Europe’s soccer powers and beer
producing giants. In short, it is the closest place to heaven when you cross the Atlantic on your way to the Old Continent.
Upon arriving in Amsterdam, capital of the Netherlands and a stag party hub for decades, you are halfway through important decision-making. First, you can choose to walk along the romantic, yet murky canals cluttered with houseboats or tour the Renaissance art museums. Or you can scratch that and hit the coffee shops, strip clubs, erotic shows and brothels first. Adult nightlife in Amsterdam is concentrated in three easy-to-find red light districts (http://www.redlightdistricts.net). The most heavy traffic runs through De Wallen. Mind you, you don’t have to sneak around looking all shy and wondering where the good stuff is. De Wallen is out there – easy to recognize, widely public and nothing to be ashamed of. As soon as you get out of Central Station, head in the direction of Nieuwenmarkt. The other two areas are also popular but slightly smaller – behind the Rejksmuseum and along Singel. Remain alert for the bright red and purple neon lights that shine from the first couple of stories of regular housing buildings – they signify the windows where you may want to stop and check out the temptations. If orientation is not your forte, you can always take a guided tour specifically designed to walk you through the areas and answer your pressing questions.