• Soon you’ll be able to travel by direct Eurostar from St. Pancras all the way to Amsterdam.

    by  • February 28, 2018 • Amsterdam, City Breaks, Rail

    The new direct train service will start of 4th April.


    On 20th February 2018 an inaugural Eurostar service to the Netherlands left St Pancras at 08.31.  The train made its first stop at Rotterdam at 12:33 (CET), before arriving at Amsterdam at 13:12 – a journey of just 3hr41m. Commercial services are due to begin 4th April and tickets will cost from only £35 one way.


    On the way back, travellers will still have to take a Thalys train from Amsterdam or Rotterdam to Brussels Midi and change onto a Eurostar from there.  Nevertheless, it’s still a rather exciting prospect to be able to take a train all the way from London to Amsterdam without having to move out of your seat!


    Amsterdam has long been a favourite city break destination.  The city centre is quite small and it’s easy to get around the major sights on foot.  Dam Square is in the heart of the city and has a fascinating history.  For example, it was the reception area for Napoleon and his troops during the 1808 take-over of the city. The Koninklijk (Royal) Palace which  dominates the square was originally used as the town hall. In contrast to its turbulent history, the square is now a peaceful place surrounded by attractive buildings, many of which contain shops, cafes and restaurants.

    The Anne Frank Huis is without question an Amsterdam essential for tourists.   Anne’s family and four other Jews hid here for two years during the German occupation of Amsterdam in the Second World War before being captured and sent to concentration camps, where Anne later died. On a visit to the house you get to see photographs, books, letters and other personal documents including Anne’s famous diary.

    The museum district of the city has much to interest the visitor.  Set in the heart of Museum Plein, the Rijksmuseum is one of the world’s greatest art galleries. The museum is best known for its outstanding collection of 15th to 17th-century Dutch paintings, particularly those of Rembrandt and Vermeer.  I would strongly recommend a visit to the Van Gogh Museum as well.  Famous works of art to be seen here include Starry Night, The Bedroom and Sunflowers.  The museum provides the visitor with a fascinating overview of this intriguing artist’s work.


    Finally, it would be very difficult to write a piece about Amsterdam without mentioning the city’s canals.  The number of canals has led the city to become known as “The Venice of the North. A trip on the canals can be both fascinating and relaxing.  At night many of the houses and bridges are illuminated. The four main canals in the centre are Prinsengracht, Herengracht, Keizersgracht and Singel.

    However many nights you spend in Amsterdam and whether you fly or take the new direct Eurostar service from London, you’re sure to find plenty of things to do and see for the whole of your visit.


    With a degree in Geography under her belt, Ann felt that a career in travel might be a good choice. Fast forward over thirty years, and Ann is still in the industry so her instincts have served her well. Ann spent much of her early career working for big names such as Global Overland and Wallace Arnold where she was involved in the contracting and operation of coach tours on a large scale. Taking time out to raise her family, Ann returned to the industry working for Cities Direct. Her desire to travel is as strong as ever and she loves nothing better than visiting a new destination and being able to relay her experiences first hand to Cities Direct clients.