Whenever you find yourself in a new country, one you haven’t explored before, or one you might have taken just a glimpse at, there’ll be a call to get to know the place. One very good, and also obvious way of doing that is by simply heading to a museum. The world hosts some of the craziest, biggest, most famous museums and wherever you’ll go, you’ll have the opportunity to explore one. Some are free, some are not, some are small, some are MASSIVE. There are ones about culture, ones about history, ones about art, and even ones about food. No matter where you go, you’ll have plenty of options to go out and get to know a country better by visiting one of their museums.
It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been in the Netherlands for, it’s always encouraged to get to know a bit more about our small but versatile country. With its rich history, many famous artists, and incredible architecture, you’ll have plenty of things to learn about your temporary home. But where do you start? Down below we’ve made a list that contains some recommended museums to start out with when exploring the Netherlands.
1. Rijksmuseum – Amsterdam
As the capital of the Netherlands and international metropolis, Amsterdam hosts some of the best museums in this country. One that you’ll surely have heard of is called ‘The Rijksmuseum’. Located on the Museum square in Amsterdam, you’ll find this national museum that’s dedicated to art and history. As the largest art museum in the country, it contains magnificent pieces ranging from the Middle Ages till present day.
2. Zaanse Schans – Zaandam OR Kinderdijk
You’ve seen the pictures of landscapes covered in windmills. Now, even though the Netherlands has become much more modern, there are still some sights out there that give you a perfect impression of what life looked like back in early days. Visiting the Zaanse Schans or Kinderdijk will take you back in time, allowing you to walk past the windmills and into the little shops and museums around them.
3. Anne Frank House – Amsterdam
If you’ve got a good memory, you’ve probably heard bits of the Anne Frank story. A world famous diary written by a girl who lived through a time we can’t even imagine. In the heart of Amsterdam, you have the opportunity to visit the Anne Frank House, in which you’ll get a fascinating insight what life was like for Anne and her family during the Second World War.
4. WONDR – Amsterdam
Something a little different than art galleries or historical museums, you’ve got WONDR. It’s an immersive pop-up experience designed by some creative minds in Amsterdam. It’s an interactive exhibit that allows you to roam various colourful rooms and experience, as they like to call it, visual magic.
5. The Mauritshuis Royal Picture Gallery – The Hague
All over the Haque you’ll find plenty of beautiful architecture, art works, sights and experiences but one of the classics to go to would be The Mauritshuis. It consists some of the best painting works of the Golden Age, for example Vermeer’s ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’. The building itself, a monument from the seventeenth century, takes you back in time whilst you take in the various art works displayed in the many rooms.
6. Overloon War Museum – Overloon
This museum is the biggest WWII museum you can find in the Netherlands. Exactly on the spot of the museum is where the tank battle of Overloon unfolded back in 1944, leaving the town completely ravaged. In order to remember the victims the museum was founded two years later, in 1946. In the exhibitions you’ll learn more about this period of time and get introduced to all the military vehicles and artillery from both the allied forces as from Germany up close.
As you can see there are quite some options, and this is only the top of a list that’s favoured by many people that come to visit the Netherlands. Besides art museums and ones that focus on history, you can find plenty of others that have quicker changing exhibitions with topics such as photography, videography, modern art, and so on. Usually, these types take place in smaller scaled museums, so make sure to do some research on your favoured topic and we’ll guarantee you that there’ll be one that will satisfy.