Skating along Anne Frank House and Westerkerk

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    In winter, Amsterdammers watch the falling thermometer readings with the same focus as people in Aspen and Chamonix. When the temperature drops low enough for long enough, the lakes and the canals in Amsterdam become sparkling highways for the skaters. Little kiosks are set up on the ice to dispense heart-warming liqueurs. I really love this part of our culture. Almost everyone, young or old, likes to skate and is smiling and friendly. The last days the cold was enough for the canals to freeze over a rare occasion. Amsterdammers sharpen their blades and hit the ice. On the 5th of February 2012, the first people started skating on the canals of Amsterdam. A lovely view of people skating on the Keizersgracht canal. Who knows times of Hendrick Avercamp are coming back this year. Avercamp was the first Dutch artist to specialize in paintings of winter landscapes featuring people enjoying the ice. Some 400 years on, our image of life in the harsh winters of the Golden Age is still dominated by Avercamp’s ice scenes with their splendid narrative details of couples skating, children pelting each other with snowballs and unwary individuals falling through the ice.

    Photo of the Dutch ice-skaters on the Bloemgracht canal in Amsterdam. The young kids enjoy the ice on the canals. Very special is ice skating on the canals of Amsterdam. Here on the Bloemgracht along the Anne Frank House in direction of the Prinsengracht. On the background you can you see the Western church build in 1620. As temperatures plunge across Europe, many are cursing the cold. But not in the Netherlands. There, many are hoping for further frigid conditions. This weekend we could ice skate even on some canals of Amsterdam. This week temperature will remain below zero and we could skate on even more canals in Amsterdam.

    Eindelijk weer een weekend waarin Jordanezen de ijzers konden onderbinden. Nog geen ideale condities want door de sneeuwval van afgelopen week is het ijs niet overal even goed, maar geen wakken. Op de Keizersgracht is het ijs net dik genoeg,er kan best aardig geschaatst worden. De grachten eindelijk bevroren en de adem komt in kleine grijze pufjes uit mijn mond. Handen op de rug. Rustig ademen. Ik geniet van het geluid van de ijzers over het ijs, sneeuw en een prachtige gezicht op de Amsterdamse grachtenpanden. Het is zo koud geweest dat we zelfs onder de bruggen door konden schaatsen. Wie even wegdenkt kan zich vandaag in Hendrick Avercamps wereld wanen. Als eerste Amsterdamse kunstenaar uit de 17de eeuw specialiseerde hij zich in het schilderen van winterlandschappen met ijspret. Ons beeld van het leven in de strenge winters in de Gouden Eeuw wordt na 400 jaar nog altijd bepaald door Avercamps ijsgezichten met prachtige verhalende details van schaatsende paartjes, kinderen die elkaar bekogelen met sneeuwballen of een man die door het ijs zakt.

    Lebing Gong, André Varela, Chikorita, and 78 other people added this photo to their favorites.

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    1. Anne -marie 25 months ago | reply

      Beautiful image Ben...

    2. godisinusall (GreyReb in+out + real busy) 25 months ago | reply

      Impressive view point !! Anne Frank's house, wow !! A lot to learn from that trrue story !! Samantha looks like an Angel on the ice in this photo !! Have a great weekend !!

    3. Driven to Capture 2 25 months ago | reply

      You had a very sunny day! Enjoy the week end!!

    4. koko_pictures 25 months ago | reply

      Tuurlijk ben ik blij met de lente temperatuur.......maar ik mis de winter toch wel 'n beetje......!

    5. *Lie ... on & off ... ! 25 months ago | reply

      Het licht op de toren van de Westerkerk is prachtig , Ben !

      Seen on your photo stream. (?)

    6. grillingjoe 25 months ago | reply

      what a great set of pictures and it is wonderful to see how people can make do in severe weather

    7. Guylaine Begin 25 months ago | reply


      Found at GreatPixGallery50+ Group!

      and it will look like this: Found at GreatPixGallery50+ Group!

    8. framed by Christian 25 months ago | reply

      Absolutely beautiful scene. Amsterdam is an amazing place! :)

    9. Ping Timeout 25 months ago | reply

      Amazing details.

    10. Hanny Patmos . [deleted] 25 months ago | reply

    11. reneve31 25 months ago | reply

      Great series... I'm sure it must be a great moment to skate on Amsterdam's canals....

    12. Francisco Aragão 25 months ago | reply

      An excellent angle and perspective !!!
      Have a great sunday, too !!!

    13. ash2276 25 months ago | reply

      Such amazing captures!

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