It was May 5 and I had to learn, that it was better to avoid the city center at that date. Amsterdam joins the rest of the Netherlands on 4 May when its citizens pause to pay their respects to the victims and fallen soldiers of World War II. Then, on 5 May it’s time for a national party, as the crowds take to the streets to celebrate their freedom on Liberation Day. At various spots in the city, Dutch bands and international musicians and DJs performed live. Due to the various Liberation Day festivals, the routes for public transport were different as usual. OK – that’s not for me!
And so I decided to take a 24h ticket for public transport and explore the outer districts, preferably far away from the city center with all the flags, balloons, T-shits and wigs in orange. Take tram 7 or 14 which crosses the city from west to east. My first intention was to escape that fun fair – main thing away! So I found myself in Slotermeer at Slotermeerpark, which is the last stop of tram 14 in Amsterdam Nieuw-West. I had hit the mark; before I reached the final stop I had passed several stunning artworks – a lot to do for the morning. So I walked Slotermeer and back home, after an interview with www knows it all, I found out, that I had made an involuntary spot landing in SAMA, Amsterdams open air Street Art Museum Nieuw West. Featuring over 150 works, SAMA’s collection is ever-growing. From the colossal 150 square metres work of STINKFISH, to very small pieces, SAMA’s collection is worth seeing. In a few hours only you’ll find a lot of pieces but it might be better to book a guided tour. Then it is easier to find all the spots; local guides will show you around and share the stories behind the artworks. After successful hours of hunting street art I was a bit lame and boarded an eastbound tram. Time enough to cool my feet down and visit a local hall of fame I had heard of. Flevopark is situated on the east side of Amsterdam. This large green park is the perfect place to relax, go for a jog, play some sports, enjoy a picnic or simply for painting – particularly graffiti. Construction of Flevopark started in the early 20th century. In those days, the area of the Flevopark was part of a large polder. The pillars of Zuiderzeeweg, where this hall of fame is located at, are partially in water and swamp. The pillars are reed overgrown and waterfowl share the grounds with the aerosol artists. I’m not familiar with the local graffiti scene, but one thing is for sure: some of them play premium league. When I came home in the late evening, the party in the inner city was at the peak; most of the faces were orange of partying. All in all a consistently successful day.