Mad about museums? Then you’ll be in heaven in Amsterdam. Varying from the weird to the wonderful, the museums in the Dutch capital are as diverse as they come. Meaning there’s plenty to satisfy every type of curious culture vulture.
Experience art, history and everything in between when you go museum hopping in this bustling city. Read our guide to the best museums in Amsterdam below and swot up on the top ones to visit during your trip.
- Anne Frank House
- Van Gogh Museum
- BODY WORLDS Amsterdam
- Amsterdam Cheese Museum
- NEMO Science Museum
- Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam
- Diamond Museum Amsterdam
- Hermitage Amsterdam
- Eye Filmmuseum
The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam is a stellar place to visit. Filled with more than 8,000 masterpieces, it demands more than a few hours of your time to experience it at its best. The history of art takes centre stage here, with paintings spanning the Middles Ages right up to the present day. While international pieces feature, the museum really honours its homegrown legends, with works from Vermeer, Van Gogh and Rembrandt exhibited in style. The latter’s The Night Watch is one of the highlights of the whole collection, an enormous painting at 379.5 cm high and 453.5 cm wide!
2. Anne Frank House
Established in memory of famed wartime diarist Anne Frank, this museum is located in the house where the Frank family hid from the Nazis during World War II. It’s a compelling attraction to visit, providing a sombre and realistic window into the horrors of the era. You can go behind the bookcase and see the secret annexe for yourself, where the rooms have been carefully preserved to look as they did while the writer lived there.
3. Van Gogh Museum
Amsterdam’s art museum scene reaches a crescendo at this contemporary complex. Dedicated to Dutch master Vincent Van Gogh, this museum boasts the largest collection of his works in the world. Highlights include The Potato Eaters, The Bedroom, Sunflowers and Almond Blossom. As you meander through the collection of paintings, you’ll be able to see how Van Gogh’s style developed over the years.
4. BODY WORLDS Amsterdam
For a complete change of scenery, head to BODY WORLDS Amsterdam. This fascinating exhibit toured the world before taking up permanent residence in Amsterdam’s city centre. Its educational collection uses plastinated bodies to provide an insight into how our anatomy works and how everyday choices can impact our happiness.
5. Amsterdam Cheese Museum
Small but oh-so-interesting, this delightful museum along Prinsengracht provides the opportunity to find out more about locally-made cheese. Discover more about the history of cheesemaking, taste free samples of Gouda and stock up on your favourite blocks of the good stuff.
6. NEMO Science Museum
The NEMO Science Museum in Amsterdam is an unmissable waterfront sight. Tear your eyes away from the striking sloping façade and inside you’ll find an interactive experience across five floors all about the intriguing world of science and technology. Have a go at experiments, get to grips with the principles of electricity, sound, light and gravity, and enjoy a glimpse of iconic historical devices. Afterwards, head up to the rooftop to enjoy knockout views of the city.
7. Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam
Created in homage to contemporary works, this modern art museum in Amsterdam boasts an impressive collection of 90,000 pieces. Ceramics, paintings, sculptures and photography can all be found under one roof. Take the free audio tour to get a better insight into the exhibit highlights or join a guided tour for a deeper understanding.
8. Diamond Museum Amsterdam
Magpies, this one’s for you – it’s the only museum of its kind in Europe. The exhibit narrates the origins of diamonds, a story that started three billion years ago. Among the history, a collection of sparkling artefacts can be admired, from diamond-encrusted crowns to eye-popping jewellery.
9. Hermitage Amsterdam
Discover a slice of Russia on the banks of the Amstel River at the Hermitage Amsterdam. This museum is a branch of the Hermitage Museum of Saint Petersburg, where temporary exhibitions of neoclassical art grace the walls. Don’t miss the permanent collection of enormous Dutch portraits from the Golden Age!
10. Eye Filmmuseum
You’d be forgiven for thinking a spaceship had landed in Amsterdam when you catch your first glimpse of the Eye Filmmuseum. This cinematic institute is housed in a gleaming white contemporary creation nestled on the River IJ. Come here to discover more about the history of film, watch classic movies and marvel at memorabilia.
Amsterdam’s museums are a joy to visit. See them all when you book a trip to the Dutch capital with Jet2CityBreaks.
Posted: 15th May 2019.