I love Europe as well…so much that I moved over here. 😉 Of course, having a dutch fiance kind of helped!
Honestly, Jamielee is correct, you aren’t exposed to the weed or prostitution unless you go looking for it. And when you do run into it, it’s not a big deal unless you make it a big deal. Both are legal over here and in genenal neither dutchies or europeans make a fuss about it (I even work in the business side of the adult industry and people don’t get shocked…big difference from the US).
While I don’t care for Amsterdam (too touristy for me, but a necessary evil), it does have a lot to offer. I personally prefer Utrecht which a lot of tourists don’t make it to so you don’t have the shops selling nick nacks every 3 shops. It has fantastic shopping, historic buildings, and the NL’s tallest church tower which I recommend climbing.
Only 2 hours away from Amsterdam by train is Antwerp, which is where I go for clothes shopping. There’s also a lot of history there since it got hit hard in WW2, has northern Europes oldest gothic church, and of course the Belgians know how to do food. The dutch eat to live, the Belgians live to eat. There are more food shops than other stores. LOL And hand dipped belgian chocolates. Yum!
I have only been to Brussles while passing through the train station, but from what I hear from both my dutch and belgian friends, it’s not all that great. Do Antwerp and Bruges instead (plus Brussels is getting onto the Wellian, French, side of Belgium and they’re a lot less friendly than the flemish).
I went to Bruges for the first time last year. It’s a pain to get to by either train or car but once you arrive it’s FANTASTIC. Lots of lace shops. 😉
I’ve also been to various places in Germany along the dutch boarder (mostly for concerts) as well as Koln. France is beautiful, I went camping through southern France in 2007. Kopenhagen is awesome up in Denmark and of course the UK is great as well.
I’m personally going to a vacation park near Hamburg, Germany for my “honeymoon” with my parents and best friend to do some cycling. That’s also a great way to do France, Germany, Belgium or the Netherlands.