Museums in Amsterdam offer the best of the greatest Dutch Cultural Heritage. You will love to visit my selection of impressive Museums. The main Museums, like the National Museum and The Van Gogh Museum you will find in a square called “Museumplein”. From there you could walk along canals to e.g the Hermitage and the National science museum. But there is more. A lot more. Let me offer you an overview of the main centers of art in Amsterdam.
The best Museums in Amsterdam are at Museumplein
The first place you should go when you arrive in Amsterdam is Museumplein. On Museumplein, there are 4 great museums. Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum, Stedelijk Museum and Moco Museum. Once you have visited Museumplein your visit to Amsterdam is already a success. It is a true pleasure to visit all these unique museums and I can already tell you that 1 day is not enough to view all the art treasures, wonderful expositions, and amazing collections in these museums.
Museums in Amsterdam: The National Museum
The Rijksmuseum of Amsterdam is the number 1 museum in the Netherlands. It’s more than a fantastic museum. The outer looks of the building are more beautiful than the looks of the Royal Palace on Dam Square. The Rijksmuseum was designed by the Dutch architect Pierre Cuypers. The museum is located on the awesome Museum Square. The Rijksmuseum contains a major collection of Dutch art and history, including works by 17th-century Dutch masters such as Rembrandt van Rijn, Johannes Vermeer, and Frans Hals. Top pieces are performed in the Hall of Fame. At the end of the Hall of Fame, the world-famous painting “The Night Watch” by Rembrandt van Rijn is exhibited. Temporary exhibitions are organized in the south wing of the Rijksmuseum.
Preserving Rembrandt’s “Night Watch” for Next Generations
All in all, the Rijksmuseum is a museum where you can spend days and then still have not seen everything. The Rijksmuseum has been working for a long time on the reconstruction and restoration of “The Night Watch”. This project is completed now. Currently, the Night Watch is under investigation, in the largest-ever study using the latest and most advanced technology to determine how best to preserve a masterpiece for future generations. This is done in front of the public in a specially designed glass cage.
➔ Rijksmuseum, Museumplein 1, Amsterdam
CLAIR OBSCURE IN REMBRANDT HOUSE MUSEUM
And if you are still interested in Rembrandt, you may like to visit the Rembrandt House as well. This museum is the former residence of the Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn, who lived here from 1639 to 1658. In addition to a living area, the building contains a studio and an art dealership. In Rembrandt’s time, his house was about 200 meters from the city boundary, he practically lived in the countryside. Today his house is in the center of Amsterdam and the city boundary is miles away.
➔ Rembrandt House Museum, Jodenbreestraat 4, Amsterdam
WE LOVE TO VISIT THE VAN GOGH MUSEUM
Who doesn’t know the sunflowers of Vincent van Gogh? If you want to know why Vincent van Gogh’s sunflowers are so special, go to the Van Gogh museum. This museum is a tribute to Vincent van Gogh and is largely devoted to his work. The museum contains a collection of more than two hundred paintings, five hundred drawings, and seven hundred letters by Vincent van Gogh, as well as his collection of Japanese prints. The library contains more than 23,000 titles.
➔ Van Gogh Museum, Museumplein, Amsterdam
VISIT STEDELIJK MUSEUM OF AMSTERDAM: MODERN ART AND DESIGN
The Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam is a great museum for modern and contemporary art and design. Since the beginning of the museum, modern and contemporary art, photography and design are the major part of the collection. The museum now manages more than 100,000 objects. Virtually all major movements of the 20th and 21st centuries are represented in the collection. Focal points are De Stijl, the Bauhaus, COBRA, and Pop Art, but also neo-impressionism. The collection includes, among others, work by Pieter Mondriaan, Karel Appel, Gerrit Rietveld, and a lot of international masterpieces. The municipal museum organizes special exhibitions among which we saw -some time ago – an oeuvre exhibition of Kazemir Malevitsj. Prepare yourself and watch the online exhibition:
➔ Stedelijk Museum – Museumplein, Amsterdam
AMSTERDAM’S DRAMATIC HISTORY: ANNE FRANK HOUSE
What can we say about the Anne Frank Museum? Her story is so dramatic. Her museum is an exemplary place of a terrible past when genocide – 6 million people were killed in concentration camps – betrayal, bloodshed, war and starvation raged across Europe. The “Diary of Anne Frank” is known worldwide. The Anne Frank Museum is the house where this young girl went into hiding during the Second World War. Here she wrote her book. Once betrayed, she and her family were arrested, deported, gassed and burned by German Nazis. The Nazis believed the Germans were a Superior Teutonic Arian Race. This Race was going to rule Hitler’s “Third Empire”. An empire in which there was no room for people like e.g. the Jews who, according to the Nazis, belonged to an inferior race. A race to be wiped out!
➔ Anne Frank House, Westermarkt 20, Amsterdam
AMSTERDAM MUSEUM ON THE AMSTEL
The “Amsterdam Museum on the Amstel” was formerly called the “Hermitage Museum”. This was a Russian-oriented museum with close ties to the “State Hermitage Museum” in St. Petersburg. For a long time, the Hermitage Amsterdam kept aloof from political developments in Putin’s Russia. After all, politics focuses on everyday reality and the museum’s orientation lies with art treasures and movements that span centuries. Through the carefully built links with the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, the museum had access to one of the world’s most famous art collections from which to draw for its exhibitions. Russia’s attack on Ukraine in 2022 makes this aloofness no longer tenable. So the Hermitage Amsterdam museum was renamed in the “Amsterdam Museum on the Amstel”. In this museum, there are various art exhibitions and collections. Interesting concerts and artistic activities are regularly organized in the museum garden.
➔ The New Amsterdam aan de Amstel – Amstel 51, Amsterdam
AMSTERDAM CITY MUSEUM
This Amsterdam City Museum used to be an orphanage on the Kalverstraat. Presently (2023) this museum is closed for renovation. The collection of the City Museum is temporarily spread over several museums in Amsterdam.
➔ Burgerweeshuis Amsterdam
TROPIC MUSEUM AMSTERDAM PRESENTS WORLD CULTURES
In Amsterdam East, on the edge of the Oosterpark, is a beautiful national monument in which the Tropenmuseum is located. In the Tropenmuseum you will become acquainted with other cultures and you can delve into Dutch history. The museum reveals how colonization and slavery contributed to the present wealth of the Netherlands.
➔ Tropenmuseum Worldcultures Amsterdam
NEMO SCIENCE MUSEUM OFFERS GREAT EXPERIMENTAL SETUPS
Nemo is a really nice “Do” museum. The objects in NEMO are often experimental setups in which the visitor can investigate a scientific phenomenon in the field of physics, chemistry, biology, and behavioral sciences. Experimentation makes young people enthusiastic about science and technology. The museum is located near Amsterdam Central Station, you can walk to it in no time. Nemo Science Museum has an amazing rooftop, it’s the highest city square in the Netherlands. Here you will find the open-air exhibition Energetica, a large outdoor terrace, and a restaurant: all with a beautiful view over the city of Amsterdam.
➔ Nemo Science Museum – Oosterdok 2, Amsterdam
LEARN ALL ABOUT BEER IN THE HEINEKEN EXPERIENCE MUSEUM
Taste the story of the world’s most famous beer in Amsterdam at the Heineken Experience. Take an interactive tour through the history of the beer producer in the old brewery. Of course, you end the tour tasting a wide variety of beer. In 1988, the former Heineken brewery in Amsterdam moved out of the city center because the building became too small. The brewery was then converted into the Heineken Experience Museum.
➔ Heineken – Stadhouderskade 78, Amsterdam
THE LOVELY AMSTERDAM FOAM PHOTO MUSEUM
Foam is a fantastic museum for anyone interested in photography. The photography museum is located on the Keizersgracht in Amsterdam. The museum presents rotating exhibitions showcasing all kinds of photographic genres, such as historical photos, art photos, news photos, and fashion photos.
➔ Foam Fotografiemuseum, Keizersgracht 609, Amsterdam
LARGEST STREET ART STRAAT MUSEUM IN THE WORLD NDSM AMSTERDAM NORTH
The STRAAT Museum at NDSM in Amsterdam-North is the largest Street Art Museum in the world. Believe me, this really is an awesome museum. In 2021 “Straat Museum” was proclaimed “Museum of the Year”. In an immense former shipyard of 8000 m2, you will find the Graffiti and Street Art Museum. Enter this industrial atmosphere and admire 150 huge street artworks created by some 130 artists from all over the world. Works of art might be created on the spot, in the museum. The entire collection is too big to be continuously exhibited. So the artworks are shown in rotating exhibitions. The museum’s ambition is to collect works of art from all over the world. STRAAT Museum offers tours where all your questions about the collection will be answered.
➔ STRAAT Museum Amsterdam NDSM-Plein 1, 1033 WC Amsterdam
BANKSY AND DIGITAL ART AT MOCO MUSEUM
The Moco Museum is a private and independent museum at the Museumplein in the center of Amsterdam. This institution exhibits modern and contemporary art. The museum aims to make modern and contemporary art accessible to a broad young audience and has a wide range of inspiring modern, contemporary, and street art. The Banksy exposition features a diverse selection of original works from throughout Banksy’s noteworthy career. A futuristic exposition brings together a selection of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFT) from the world’s greatest pioneering digital artists. These rare and unique works express a possible future of digital art. Moco museum is an exhibitions & experiences museum. The right place to create a personal artistic experience on your phone.
➔ Moco Museum, Honthorststraat 20, 1071 DE Amsterdam
King Willem Alexander married in The New Church on Dam Square
The New Church (Nieuwe Kerk) on Dam Square Amsterdam is a great place where fantastic exhibitions are organized. You can currently visit the exhibition about the former Dutch queen Juliana. Juliana was the grandmother of the current King Alexander. The Nieuwe Kerk is also famous because King Alexander and Queen Maxima married in this church.
➔ Nieuwe Kerk Amsterdam
Everyone wants to be a queen, but is it really such a wonderful life? Maybe it is and maybe it isn’t. Judge it for yourself at this awesome exposition dedicated to the life of Juliana. In Amsterdam on Dam Square next to the Royal Palace is the New Church. The Nieuwe Kerk is known for its most fantastic exhibitions. Until April 2023 you can visit the exhibition The Century of Juliana, a modern and rebellious queen. Juliana was the only daughter of King Wilhelmina, mother of Beatrix, and grandmother of the current King of the Netherlands Willem Alexander. This exposition is a tribute to Juliana, Queen of the Netherlands, and an absolute must-see. Visit the Nieuwe Kerk and the Royal Palace and let yourself be amazed by Juliana’s high-profile life.
➔ Nieuwe Kerk, Amsterdam – The century of Juliana, Queen of the Netherlands.
ARTIS GROOTE MUSEUM
In 2022 the Artis Groote Museum opened its doors. This part of the Amsterdam Zoo was closed to the public for 75 years. The building is renovated and turned into a museum. The “Groote Museum Artis” is not only part of the Artis Zoo, but of Micropia, Planetarium, and the Botanical Garden as well. The building in which the Groote Museum is housed is a national monument. Learn, experience, and read in this museum about climate change, the similarities and connections between all living things. “Anyone can count the seeds in an apple, but no one can count the apples in a seed”.
➔ Groote Museum Artis
GET HIGH AND VISIT THE HASH, MARIHUANA, WEED, AND HEMP MUSEUM
If you are interested in the history of hash and weed, and if you want more information about how it is grown and sold, and why it is banned in many countries? Then visit the hash and weed museum in the center of Amsterdam.
➔ Hash, Marihuana and Hemp museum
THE WILLET-HOLTHUYSEN MUSEUM
Curious about how the rich and famous used to live in splendor? Salons decorated in Louis XVI style and behind the house you relax in a Versailles-like garden. High-profile exhibitions are organized on this magnificent location.
➔ Museum House Willet-Holthuysen
THE JEWISH MUSEUM
This modern Jewish museum shows the Jewish history in the Netherlands. The museum is located in a synagogue and shows Jewish habits and customs. The Jewish way of life, customs and habits.
➔ Jewish Museum
NATIONAL SHIPPING AND MARITIME MUSEUM
The Dutch have been sailing the seas and oceans since time immemorial, the Dutch are and always were an adventurous people. Steady going and looking for new experiences. The Dutch were well involved in the slave trade and leaving footprints on e.g. Greenland whaling the northern hemisphere The shipping, the maritime museum gives a picture of former glorious and unglorious shipping times. The museum has a large collection of historic shipping and maritime paintings, navigation instruments, and nautical charts. This museum was voted the museum of the year in 2022.
➔ Maritime Museum