Archive for the ‘Guides’ Category

Amsterdam bikes

Amsterdam bikesAlthough you “know” that Amsterdam has loads of bicycles, you’ll never appreciate just how many are there ’til you see it for yourself. The photo here is just one spot from many cycle parks that are all over the city.

Because of this concentration on cycling, you’ll find that it’s very much a city to explore without your car and doesn’t have anything like the level of pollution that you would normally get in a city of this scale. That’s not to say that you can’t use your car, just that you don’t need to.

Just walking round the city and its many canals is very pleasant and you’ll come across untold numbers of attractions even if you just wander aimlessly. Don’t miss the Anne Frank museum though which is much, much smaller than I had imagined from the books. Although the queue is quite large it moves quickly so the wait usually isn’t that long.

As you’ll know Amsterdam is home to a red light district and, yes, the prostitutes really do use red lights in the windows to indicate that they’re available. It’s not nearly as much “in your face” as you might expect though and certainly during the day feels more like a tourist attraction than a “den of iniquity”.

We found that the best thing to do was to pick out an out of town hotel near the airport and get the train in and that’s what we’ll be doing next time we visit. The hotel we stayed at has an airport shuttle so that followed by a short train journey took us into the city centre very quickly and pleasantly.

This is part of our expanding Whole Earth Guide.

Copyright © 2004-2014 by Foreign Perspectives. All rights reserved.

Thinking of Yorkshire…

Wendy’s quite keen on Yorkshire though she’s not actually been there and knows it principally through the books of James Herriot.

Normally, the reality of a place is quite different to that which you read about in a book but that’s not the case for Yorkshire. Those rolling dales really are like that and many of the cute country towns that you see on the TV series haven’t changed a whole lot either.

For that matter, you can even go to the Skeldale House which these days houses the Herriot Museum and for that matter you can even stay in the Wheatsheaf Hotel that he stayed on his honeymoon. I’ve been told that we’re going to be staying there when we get around to going!

Yorkshire is one of those areas of England where you have a considerable choice of different activities to choose from too. If you tire of the dales, there’s York itself which just oozes history as do many of the medieval towns around the area. It’s easy to spend a week or even two going round it all.

Copyright © 2004-2014 by Foreign Perspectives. All rights reserved.

Extending the travel guide

Wendy’s been busy whilst I was away and we now have a whole bunch of new cities represented on Whole Earth Guide.

There’s several in the UK and Ireland, a first in Hungary, the bigger cities in Italy and a few in Switzerland too now.

As usual, we’re aiming these guides as specifically tourist guides primarily for short break holidays and we’re aiming to cover the top tourist cities in Europe before the summer season if we can manage to keep at it.

Copyright © 2004-2014 by Foreign Perspectives. All rights reserved.

Why does everyone seem to want an American bank account?

By far the most popular post on our Whole Earth Guide is the one detailing how to go about opening a bank account in America.

The reason is simple really: if you run an online business then sooner or later you generally find yourself in need of an American bank account. Unfortunately, the increased security measures in place post 9/11 mean that it’s not quite so easy to open one these days unless, of course, you’re living in America and therefore a considerable number of websites have grown up with the specific aim of selling you the required information.

Our site doesn’t charge for that information and therefore is increasingly popular as it provides exactly the same information that other sites charge anything from $5 to $250 to provide.

However, we’re sorely tempted to start charging for it too given some of the emails we’ve received demanding additional information and wanting to know why it isn’t on the site yet. What we’ll likely do is to charge for the hand-holding level of information or at least offer it for sale as the information on the above page is quite sufficient to allow anyone to open an account in America.

Copyright © 2004-2014 by Foreign Perspectives. All rights reserved.

Another day, another place: Chantilly

The castle at Chantilly is one of the small collection of spectacular chateaux in the general Paris region. Yet, there’s a whole lot more to it than that as you can see from our Whole Earth entry on it.

Perhaps surprisingly, the castle houses one of the foremost collections of historical paintings in France and yet it receives relatively few visitors for that collection.

It’s easy enough to get there from Paris and very worthwhile too. Not only do you get a chateau, there’s the magnificent gardens and the artwork thrown in too!

Copyright © 2004-2014 by Foreign Perspectives. All rights reserved.