Belles on Location

A Colorful Grey Day in Amsterdam

In search of untypical things to do in Amsterdam on a typical grey day

It was a typical cold, drizzly October day in Amsterdam as my friend Amy and I donned wool hats, scarves and gloves and left my brother’s apartment to explore the city at our leisure.

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In spite of the grey weather, or perhaps because of it, the day felt peaceful, quiet, and decidedly unhurried. So we ambled along, no real destination in mind, stopping wherever took our fancy.

We saw a charming shop full of buttons, the Tassenmuseum which is devoted entirely to purses, and a canal house filled with the last inhabitants’ belongings from the 1800’s. They were all delightful and fascinating, but when we rounded a corner and discovered a Flea Market, my heart gave a lurch, and I knew this was the best place of all.

I’m a sucker for flea markets. I love seeing their versions of junk and collectibles, finding hidden treasures amongst the detritus, and people-watching to my hearts content.

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Everywhere I looked something interesting was there to catch my eye. If I needed fur-covered wooden shoes or old-fashioned skate blades that buckled on, this was the place to find them. If I found a run in my tights, no worries! Plastic legs hung from a beam showcased versions in lurid red diamonds, blue stripes and black argyle. And should I find myself feeling nostalgic for those the days of Communism, a line of hammer and sickle topped hats danced in the breeze.

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Amy and I had a marvelous time rifling through bowls of jewels, flipping through stacks of old prints, and admiring the hand-knitted hats. I chose some little treasures for myself: a smooth glass egg, a purple flowered scarf trimmed in pom-poms, and a few bits and bobs for my family.

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Patisserie Pompadour is often referred to as "the LadurΓ©e of Amsterdam"


Turns out there are always plenty of things to do in Amsterdam even on one of its typically grey days. At last we wended our way home, making sure to stop by the Patisserie Pompadour to pick up a decadent slice of chocolate cake to go with our evening tea.

I am a wood-burning artist, goat farmer, writer and photographer of all things food, travel, and lifestyle. Born in Canada, raised in the USA, and shaped by my European roots, I now live on a goat farm in Queensland, Australia with my husband,Β where I celebrate anything that leads to healing, thriving, and loving.Β For more visit: Rambling Tart

This article has 13 comments

  1. Tuula

    What a fabulous day Krista! I’m a sucker for flea markets too…imagine it’s the explorer in both of us πŸ™‚ Thanks again for allowing us to travel with you through your photos & lovely prose πŸ™‚

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  3. Krista

    I love that we have explorer in us, Tuula! πŸ™‚ I’m so glad you enjoy these jumbled markets too. They’re so fun! πŸ™‚

  4. SuzyQ Hampton

    Krista, the yummy looks inviting and the little gray hats(I want one!) Have many more fabulous trips… and thanks for sharing!

  5. Kyle Greggory

    I’m a sucker for knickknacks. I shouldn’t go here, lol!

    Throw in that cake, though, and I’m double-tempted!

  6. A Canadian Foodie

    Beautiful pics – bringing back incredible memories…. but FAR too short.. Amsterdam begs more photos… and so do I!

  7. frenchgardenhouse

    Krista, it’s always fun to shop there. And a treat from Pompadour is not too bad, either!

  8. Krista

    Thank you, Suzy! Hats are always so fun, aren’t they? πŸ™‚

  9. Krista

    I know what you mean, Kyle!! Waaaay too tempting. πŸ™‚

  10. Krista

    Aww, thanks Canadian Foodie!! πŸ™‚ So glad you like them. Perhaps I will post more about Amsterdam in the near future. πŸ™‚

  11. Krista

    It sure is, frenchgardenhouse! πŸ™‚ I love perusing their unique wares and quirky treasures. πŸ™‚

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  13. Sinny

    If you love flea markets be sure to keep an eye out for ‘ij-hallen vlooienmarkt’ in Amsterdam (Europe’s biggest flea market as they promote it)

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