Museum Square, i.e. the Museum Area
One of the most interesting areas in Amsterdam is the area called by the locals Museumplein, i.e. the museum area / square.
The first and most important cultural institution is the Rijksmuseum, which is the Dutch national museum. The building designed by architect Pierre Cuypers is already impressive. The construction of the complex was completed in 1885.
The number of exhibits at the Rijksmuseum is impressive. We will find over 8,000 at exhibitions. We should plan at least 3-4 hours for the visit. It is best to come in the morning at the opening, when the queues are the smallest, and go straight to the main room with painting. We will see there the famous painting Night Watch by Rembrandt. Amsterdam online 24/7
In addition to paintings in the museum, we will find other works of art, including porcelain, interior design and other exhibits related to the Netherlands and its Golden Era. Being on site, let’s not miss the beautiful library. We can enter its upper observation deck and admire the original structure.
Van Gogh Museum – a museum, or rather an art gallery, dedicated to the famous Dutch painter. In the season we may have to wait even an hour in line, although after 14:00 it should be a little looser than in the morning.
Stedelijk – museum of modern art. Considered one of the most important of its kind in the world, we should, however, like this type of art.
Diamond Museum (address: Paulus Potterstraat 8) – the museum is located a bit from the other institutions. It’s quite small and not very addictive, but if we have them in the card, we can have a look.
Museums surround the square with a pond and a small green park. There are food booths on the route from the Rijksmuseum to the Van Gogh Museum, we can drink coffee here or eat something quickly.
Although the historic center of Amsterdam has its charm – it’s worth going a little west to the Jordaan district. This former district of working people and emigrants in recent years has become a fashionable basin of pubs and a pleasant, slightly slower atmosphere.
Beautiful facades, neat streets and canals and ubiquitous eateries – there is no better place to walk and enjoy the city’s charms. Especially in good weather it is worth finding an hour or two and without a plan to stroll the streets.
The district’s biggest tourist attraction is the Anne Frank Museum (address: Prinsengracht 263-267). Anna Frank was a Jewish girl hiding with her father Otto and six other people behind the walls of one of the apartments during World War II. The whole group hid for almost 2 years, unfortunately it was discovered. After being caught, they were transported to camps, where all but Anna’s father were killed. Anne Frank got loud because of the journals written by the girl while in hiding.
The house where the whole group was hiding was turned into a museum. The museum is open every day. Opening hours are divided into two periods: [2017 update]
from 9:30 to 15:30 – for people who bought a ticket online. Tickets are available about 2 months before the planned entrance. You can buy them on the official website.
from 15:30 to closing – for people buying tickets at the ticket office or having entry cards. It is worth coming a moment before 15:30, queues in front of the museum can stretch for several hundred meters. Some stand 2-3 hours. There is a possibility that we will come even 2 hours before closing time and we will not be able to enter.
During the tour, we will first watch a movie describing the story, and then we can enter the rooms.
Next to the Anne Frank museum you will find the Westerkerk church. The temple inside is not impressive, but it’s worth looking inside. The entrance is free. Rembrandt van Rijn was buried in the church, but it is not known exactly where. On one of the walls you will find a commemorative plaque.
A more interesting attraction from the inside of the church may be the entrance to the church tower. We enter with a guide, we can buy tickets at the stand immediately after entering the church. Payment is only possible by card. [update 2017]
At the back of the church we can see a monument dedicated to homosexual people killed and repressed during the war.
Walking deep into the district we can find the Noordermarkt square. On Mondays (9: 00-17: 00) and Saturdays (9: 00-17: 00) fairs take place here. Flea market on Monday and organic market on Saturday.
If we would like to sit down and have a beer or tea, we can consider a visit to one of two places
Cafe Papeneiland (address: Prinsengracht 2) – a legendary pub among the locals. Inside, we drink beer, wine or tea, and also eat a delicious homemade apple pie. Inside, on one of the walls, we will see some original decorations.
Café Brandon (address: Keizersgracht 157) – a small bar from outside. Inside, it impresses with a retro-style room. We can see the decor in which the inhabitants lived a century or two ago.