Spring Tour

Sneek Travel Blog

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The Waterspoort in Sneek

A key reason we needed to meet up with Rudolph right away was to snag the Spring Tour tickets he so graciously picked up for us.  They would expire after Monday and we wanted to use them for the long haul to Friesland.  So we set out for the train station Sunday morning and inquired how to arrive at Sneek.  We were informed to take a connection to Leeuwarden through Amersfoort, but somehow we wound up in Groningen (Rudolph would soon teach us that they can print out an itinerary for you right at the station!).

 

This was no problem as we just caught a different train to Leeuwarden, and our brief layover afforded the first chance to utilize a ‘pay to pee’ lavatory.  You drop 50 cents onto a plate to gain access to the toilets at the station.

Along a Sneek canal
  The one in Groningen was kept spotless by attendants manning either gender’s facilities, though the few subsequent potty visits would never get close to this good experience.

 

The last leg to Sneek from Leeuwarden was on a ‘stoptrain’, or one that sets down at every single station along the way (i.e., the ones you avoid unless you need them to reach your final destination).  Though tedious, the distance was not great and about a half hour later we arrived at Kim’s ancestral homeland.  The ride was pretty, passing through a landscape of flat, marshy fields inhabited by cows, sheep and (surprisingly) quite a few horses that resembled dark Clydesdales.  Another tidbit Rudolph would later share was that these were Frisian horses, a graceful breed famous in Europe.

 

Sneek is a pretty village crisscrossed by canals.  Our first exposure to a rural Dutch town, we were charmed by the narrow houses lining the canals, each boasting a lovely and well maintained garden.  We got our bearings and headed towards the Waterspoort (water gate), the village’s most well known landmark.  I loved Kim’s smile as we trooped about, she was clearly gleeful to be ‘back home’.

There were quite a few canals running through the small village of Sneek.

 


After enjoying the Waterspoort we sought out a lunch spot, but virtually everything was closed on Sunday.  No retail stores were open and the only restaurant near the Waterspoort that was open was Fried Chicken, where we nabbed a couple haring (herring ) sandwiches.   Though tasty, mine would have benefited from some mustard and there weren’t any condiments on the table or at a separate station.  I was amused when I saw on the menu that you had to pay extra for mustard, even for ketchup!

 

We schlepped about a bit more, but with everything closed it wasn’t very exciting.  We did come across a small cluster of eateries that were open for business on our return to the station and splurged on some frites: french fries with mayonnaise!  Kim and I both swore this was the first and last time we would ever nosh on this tasty treat --- Dutch clogs, yes, clogged arteries, no!  But dang they were good.

Aditu says:
Hmmm, that is very interesting!
Posted on: Jun 19, 2009
vances says:
Genever (also jenever) is a liquor similar to gin (both are flavored with juniper berries) that is a regional drink in the Netherlands and Belgium, for the most part. I'm no expert...only learned about it here at TB!
Posted on: Jun 19, 2009
Aditu says:
Since this is drinking buddies what exactly is genever?
Posted on: Jun 18, 2009
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The Waterspoort in Sneek
The Waterspoort in Sneek
Home again for the first time!
Home again for the first time!
Along a Sneek canal
Along a Sneek canal
There were quite a few canals runn…
There were quite a few canals run…
The Dam Computer shop was closed l…
The Dam Computer shop was closed …
Frites with mayonnaise!
Frites with mayonnaise!
Rotary in Sneek
Rotary in Sneek
In the heart of downtown Sneek
In the heart of downtown Sneek
Sneek
photo by: vances