Red Light District | Amsterdam, The Netherlands


Look. Before we even begin and before you label me the she's so boring type, read what I've written as my sincere opinion.

Since we've moved to The Netherlands, we've had a few people throw the window shopping and/or red light joke. Yes we get it and no it's not the only thing Amsterdam as to offer. 

It's just not our thing. We were never into the idea of taking a Secrets Tour or to make a point of ticking a street filled with all sorts of weird activities off our bucket list - and definitely not the first thing we wanted to see. It actually breaks my heart to hear that there are so many people who either:
a) don't care about anything else
and/or
b) don't know about anything else.

Yes, yes, we are aware that the girls do it as a career and that they have done it for many years. Yes, we've heard it's kind of legal, but that doesn't mean it's an invitation or even a good enough reason to visit the Red Light District.

So now you probably wondering, "but why... is it a religious thing or what?"

Honestly, yes. The reason we not interested is because of who we are and our Christian faith. And to answer a stupid question, we just simply don't want to and here's why....
It's not our crowd of people and not what we see as fun. It's the way we were brought up. It goes back to our roots and to who we have become as individuals today. I'm sure many would agree that they would much rather spend that amount of money or leisure time at a music festival or travelling. There are many other amazing things to do than awkwardly walk down a busy street while watching creepy men (and woman) drool over what they can never have. 

One of our first impressions of Amsterdam was a rather shell shocked one. For us it's not really normal to see that nature of business so easily accessible to just about anyone. Back home they located towards the outskirts and/or quiet side of town. Here, you'll literally find a family restaurant next door to a sex shop. The layout of Amsterdam is quite bizarre.

Literally around the corner from the Red Light District... seems pretty innocent.
What started as a stroll soon found us standing on the one end of The Red Light District. I'm sorry to disappoint everyone, but that's also where it ended. We both quite street wise, but nothing could have prepared me for this (and we only saw - not even - a fraction of it). I was filled with an overwhelming feeling of disappointment. I was disappointed that I had now seen it. I was disappointed seeing woman sell themselves so freely to just about anyone. I was disappointed in the male audience - their facial expressions of pure lust, desperation and some even guilt. It was vulgar. Definitely not faces their mothers would be proud of.


The audience age group ranged from late teens, to the oldies. There were children sitting with their parents at a restaurant in clear view of girls in their window boxes. It's complete chaos!!!
I was actually frightened. Even more so hearing comments shouted back and forth. I was completely terrified when a girl stepped out of her box to smack a guy. We experienced the Red Light District for a few seconds, but already that was too much. It's really not something I want to see again and deeply regret being exposed to it. The experience (as short as it was) actually made me feel quite emotional. If your sensitive, avoid it.  

So that's our experience. It's not me. Not us. Not our cup of tea. And undeniably not something I consider fun.

Lastly, what you into doesn't mean anyone else needs to agree with or be into. Each one to themselves. If you know a friend well enough, don't force your interest onto them. That is all. Rant over.


Claudia Jones

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