Tokes: I looked into this a bit further, and I don't give you much of a chance. You would have to prove that your business is an asset to Dutch economical development, which is no easy thing to do... immigration services has a scorecard on which you have to score a minimum number of points. More information on their website.
So I'm moving to England in January 2009. I will be traveling all over the UK and parts of Europe while I'm there. I've read all the drug laws replies for Netherlands and don't plan to spend a lot of time in coffee shops. I'll be on the move wherever I go and just trying to take it all in. I would, however, like to experience the whole hash buying process. Just an experience...it's so hush hush here in conservative USA. More interested in shrooms or what someone referred to as "crazy cakes." Are these available in the coffee shops as well? Same or different legal policy on this? Are they strict about letting you in other countries with these?
Also, where should I stay in the Netherlands? I'll be with a friend, we're both female(23 & 24). Is the Netherlands a safe place to travel for two women? Are some places safer than others? Nearby beaches or other scenery?
Thanks so much!
Re safety; I guess NL is about as safe as it gets. That is, as long as you don't do something blatantly stupid, like the two of you getting totally p*ssed at the same time, so that you can't look out for each other
Re shrooms: if you're quick, you might just catch them while they're still legal. The fresh ones, that is; dried mushrooms have been on the narcotics banlist for quite some years now.
Re crazy cake; be very careful with that. Its effect is much less immediate than in smoking (can take up to 45 minutes to take effect, depending on the contents of your stomach, among other things), so you easily overdose yourself. Not that that's too serious, it's just VERY unpleasant.
ALL drugs and drug-containing products are illegal in the countries surrounding NL, and trying to get them in would get you in serious trouble. Don't do that.
The Dutch in my experience are quite simply the soundest people in Europe, I'm quite envious of Holland in general as, compared to England, it seems sorted, if not a bit mental! I've obviously been to The Dam a few times, it being a mere 30 mins fly time from England, (advice though: take the ferry overnight, it's a great laugh) and it's seriously beautiful, and I am talking strictly about the architecture and "mini venice" canals etc. As for safety, on one of those trips I was with female friends and they had no problems at all, it's far worse in Britain.
As for the drugs, not too surprisingly, my dutch friends, as the posts on here support, get a bit tired of it all. However, a) don't go to the tourist ones like Grasshopper or Bulldog, it's expensive and the produce is not half as good. We just followed the locals; and b) if you haven't used it that much in the States, the stuff is very, very strong so go easy, else you'll "white out."
Although everyone goes on about the weed etc, it and the Dutch themselves do seem to make for a really relaxing place, again, in direct comparision to England. There are some decent museums like the Van "me ear's fallen off" Gogh!