Four years ago, friends of mine from St. Petersburg, Russia came over and stayed with me. I’ve hosted them at my home and took them to Amsterdam, Zaandam and the Zaanse Schans. I enjoyed telling them everything I knew about my country and my region so I wanted to do this more often. Now as a tour guide I am able to tell others about the beautiful area I live in and show them, for example, how saw mills boosted the economy of Amsterdam by supplying the wood to build the ships for the United Dutch East Indian Company with.
Most of the times, I go to Amsterdam to pick guests up to drive them to windmill village Zaanse Schans. At Zaanse Schans, I can tell my guests all about how this region developed into the city it is nowadays, passing beautiful wooden houses, windmills and traditional crafts along the way.
What is the best part of your job?
I still enjoy most taking care of my guests and to surprise them with stories they have never heard before.
Every job has its ups and downs. Are there any aspects of your job that you don’t like or aren’t that keen on?
Sometimes it’s hard when I have a mixed group. I don’t want anyone to feel rushed but I also don’t want the other people in the group to wait for some guests that take more time.
As I’ve experienced when traveling myself, you will miss out a lot of stories and understanding of a place you visit if you don’t hear the full story from a local guide. Besides that, a good tour guide makes the experience complete with fun anecdotes and makes you feel more than welcome.
In your view, what makes a good tour guide?
A local tour guide who has lived for a long time in a place can tell you so much more about an area.