What are the five best museums in Amsterdam?

Answers from Our Experts (1)

Liz Humphreys
  • Liz Humphreys

  • Correspondent

  • Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands

Amsterdam packs a lot of culture into a little space — the city is home to more than 50 museums that include everything from world-class art exhibitions to quirky spaces devoted to the history of bags and purses, cats and fluorescent art. Here are our five favorite Amsterdam museums:
1. Rijksmuseum. The largest museum in the Netherlands, the Rijksmuseum is home to famous works of art from Rembrandt and Vermeer, as well as sculptures and delftware, all housed in a gorgeous 1876 building. Though much of the building is currently closed for renovations until 2013, you can see most of the museum’s highlights in the Philips Wing — so it’s still worth a stop.
2. Van Gogh Museum. This compact museum contains the most paintings in the world from 19th-century artist Vincent Van Gogh, plus his drawings and letters. It will close for renovations in October 2012, at which time you’ll be able to see 75 paintings from the museum’s collection at the Hermitage Amsterdam museum.
3. Anne Frank House. Located in the actual house where Anne Frank once lived, this museum documents the period she and her family lived in hiding for two years during World War II. The house and museum feature historical documents, photographs and items from the family, as well as Anne’s original diary, to illustrate the persecution faced by Jews during that period.
4. Hermitage Amsterdam. A branch of the original Hermitage museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, this museum showcases special exhibits such as works from Flemish painters (check the museum’s website for the current showings). Works from the Van Gogh Museum will be displayed at the Hermitage from October 2012 until late April 2013, while the Van Gogh undergoes renovations.
5. Rembrandt House Museum. The Dutch painter Rembrandt lived and worked in this house between 1639 and 1660. Today, the museum reconstructs Rembrandt’s everyday life, from furniture and objects from that period to more than 250 of Rembrandt’s prints. Though it will appeal most to Rembrandt fans, it’s also worth seeing for a look into Amsterdam’s history.

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