My Short Stay in the Netherlands

I went to the Netherlands for a week, to see my dutch family ( Even though I am not Dutch or related). I do consider  Loeki, Denise and their two wonderful dogs, Nova and Vancha as my family, who are so welcoming when I stayed with them, in the southern Netherlands.

On my first day, I went to De Biesbosch which is a national park and it is pretty awesome! Also it is one of the largest national parks of the Netherlands. It’s a brilliant place to walk, cycle or canoe through a labyrinth of rivers, feeling the breeze and seeing the nature with lots of lovely flowers, trees and animals along the path (Frogs, Squirrels, Beavers and many more) There are loads of activities to do there such as walking, sailing, canoeing, cycling and even fishing. You will never be short of something to do.

 

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Onto the second day, I went to the Windmills of Kinderdijk, which are located near Rotterdam and Holland’s oldest city, Dordrecht. This is a lovely area to walk in amongst nature and seeing the windmills and very few are currently working. Bare in mind, it is a very touristy, so gets very busy and crowded. If you walk further down on the path, it gets quiet and less touristy, you’ll enjoy listening to birds’ singing and feel the peace and quiet. I know, I did. I could have stayed there for hours, enjoying the view.

 

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Next stop, Antwerp, Belgium a few days later. It took me approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes on the train from where my friends live in Sliedrecht. While, I was in Antwerp, I took a walk to the Museum aan de Stroom, which is a beautiful piece of architecture. You can enter the museum for free. I recommend going to the rooftop and experiencing the boulevard and panorama. There are 9 floors to explore in the museum (There is a small charge to do this)

And onto Antwerp Zoo, I must admit it I am not a fan of zoo’s normally. I prefer to see animals in their natural surroundings and not locked up in a cage. However, this zoo, is huge enclosures, plenty of space to roam about with lots of trees, grass and natural habitat. The best thing about this zoo is it is located right in the middle of Antwerp City, and right next to the train station. It is approximately about two minutes walk. I recommend visiting this zoo.

 

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On my last day in the Netherlands before going to the airport in the evening, I decided to go to Amsterdam, a city of freedom.  Cycling is key to the city’s character, and they have lots, and lots of bike paths. It is such a beautiful city. There are lots of things to do, how did I spend my day?

I went and booked an Amsterdam Canal Cruise, so I could relax and see the sights of old and modern architecture such as boatyards and warehouses. There is so much history to Amsterdam. They provide you with an audio guide. Canal Cruise comes every 15 minutes from 0900 until 1800, and every 30 minutes from 1800 until 2200. It’s cost 16 euros for this activity

My last museum trip in Amsterdam before heading to the airport was “Ons’ Lieve Heer op Solder” which is a 17th-century canal house, house church, and museum in the city centre. It is the oldest museum in Amsterdam. There are many rooms to see and explore such as the attic church to the seventeenth century kitchen to confessional room. If you are interested in old churches or religion. Then it only cost 10 euros per person.

 

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All photographs are by me, and I am no expert at photography.

 

 

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Deaf Essentials on the Road

If you’re going on a round the world trip, a city break, a beach holiday, or anything that you want to do. I hope my guide will help you and provide what you may need for your adventure.

Before I think about grabbing my headband, trainers and even my sunglasses. These items are what I need to take with to support my deafness.

I hope, this guide will be able to help you if you wear cochlear implant, hearing aids or anything that you’ve got to support you. These items shouldn’t take a lot of room.

 

  1. Spare Hearing Aids  – Always have spare hearing aids with you, because you will never know when it will break! If you are going to a country that’s got high humidity, there is a higher risk of your hearing aid not working properly due to build up of moisture. So if possible, always carry spare hearing aids, and don’t take the chance!
  2. Spare Cochlear Implant – If you are wearing a cochlear implant, like me. We cannot get a back up implant because it is ridiculous expensive! So, we have to take extra care with our implant! Hopefully in the future, we can be able to afford a spare implant.
  3.  Hearing aid and Cochlear implant batteries – Don’t you love it when you hear beeping sounds, warning you that you need to change batteries within 10 minutes or less. Don’t you find it annoying when you are in the middle of the conversation with family or friends and BAAAAAAM it’s dead, have to change batteries. Always take into account the length of time you will be traveling and calculate how many batteries plus extra packets because some batteries are faulty.
  4. Music Earphones – Music Earphones? No, wait…I meant to say, music “headphones” We can’t put earphones in our ear! Well, we can…But no sounds will come through! We have our own headphones and it can be rather expensive to replace! It cost me £57.00 (Without VAT) to replace mine! I lost mine when I was holidaying in Majorca, Spain. I lost it on the way to the hotel room from pool area. I retraced my steps within 5 minutes but it had disappeared. Safe to say, I wasn’t happy with myself! Click this link if you want to buy a headphone.
  5. Hearing Aid and Cochlear Implant dry box – I cannot stress enough how much I recommend taking the dry box with you. It dries the processor out overnight. Just put your processor in the dry box and leave it overnight while you are sleeping. And voila! Dry as new! I have got my dry box from Manchester Implant team.
  6. Vibrating Alarm Clock – Please, please get a vibrating alarm clock. You don’t want to miss your transport, or even flight! My vibrating alarm clock saved me many from being late for work. No more stress sleeping! I currently used Vibrating Alarm Clock. This alarm clock only requires 1xAAA battery!

 

Next bit is optional and rather expensive to buy and takes slightly more space in your bag, but in my opinion is well worth the money and saves me in the long run. These options are for cochlear implant users, like myself.

7. Aqua + Kit – This kit will cost you £192.00 with VAT or £165.00 with no VAT (Personal use no VAT). You have no idea how much I love this kit! I use this Aqua equipment to make my implant waterproof, so I can hear people around me in the pool, ocean, or even going kayaking! It is such a great product! You can even use it while having a shower! This is the link that you need if you want to get this product. Aqua + Kit

8. Nucleus 5 Rechargeable Battery System – This is really expensive, but helps me in the long run as I don’t need to take as many disposable batteries with me ( You will need the batteries incase there is no electricity). This price will set you back £356.40 with VAT, or £297.00 with no VAT (Personal use no VAT). It comes with 2 rechargeable battery and it saves me having to pack tons of batteries! Here is the link if you wish to buy this product. Rechargeable Battery System

 

Bare in mind, when you are looking to buy a product, make sure that it does work with your device. There are currently four devices which are Kanso, Nucleus 5, Nucleus 6 and Nucleus Espirt 3G. I currently wear Nucleus 5.

I hope this guide will help you to plan your travels. If there is anything that I have missed and should be added to the list, contact me!