Saturday 21 May 2011

Alkmaar and the Cheese Market

We took a 30-40 minute train ride from Amsterdam out to Alkmaar today to the Cheese Market. Alkmaar has had a weighing house for cheese since 1365 and the Cheese Market has been running since 1593. The town itself also prides itself on being an excellent shopping destination and Langestraat contains a large variety of boutique and chain stores.

The Cheese Market is held on Friday morning and the bell at 10am signifies the start of trading. The cheese market takes place on Fridays from early April to early September.

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Our journey home took about three times as long as it took to get to Alkmaar since our train broke down at a small station in the middle of nowhere. We asked a teenager for a translation of the announcement and he said “The train is broken. They are going to try and fix it.” followed by “We all need to get off”, so we did. There were no further announcements as we waited on the platform, until another train arrived. We looked around for a dutch speaker to translate and amusingly we met the looks of others doing the same thing. Lots of people started to get onto the train, so like sheep we followed, but did find a dutch speaker along the way to confirm the train was heading into Amsterdam.

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