Known for its artistic heritage, astonishing number of canals, warm people and lip-smacking food, the Netherlands’ capital city Amsterdam is extremely soothing to the eye. Colloquially referred to as the “Venice of the North”, its waterways have always been its essence and its source of wealth. The 17th century Canal Belt was placed on UNESCO’s World Heritage list in 2010. However, the city has much more than just canals.
The iconic museum of the Netherlands, Rijksmuseum once again opened its doors to the public in full splendour on April 2013 after 10 years of rebuilding, refurbishing and renovating. Both the building and the presentation of the collection underwent a total transformation. The museum’s world-famous collection is presented in an entirely new way. In 80 galleries, over 8,000 objects tell the story of 800 years of Dutch art and history, from the Middle Ages to Mondrian. Visitors can go on a journey through the ages and experience a sense of beauty and of time.
The largest and most famous park in Amsterdam, it welcomes about 10 million visitors every year. Centrally placed south of Leidseplein and near Rijksmuseum, the Vondelpark is loved both by locals and tourists. You can see all sorts of people here – enjoying a sunny day, dog-walking, jogging, roller-skating, listening to music, or just lazing about in the grass. Free concerts are staged at the open-air theatre. Other attractions are the statue of the poet Vondel, the cast iron music dome, the Groot Melkhuis with a playground for children and the historical pavilion.
Anne Frank’s House
The Anne Frank House is a museum with a story. Anne Frank hid in 1942 from the Nazi’s during the occupation of the Netherlands. Two years later she was discovered. In 1945, she died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. As a visitor, you experience this story through quotes, photos, videos, and original items. The atmosphere in the museum is authentic and subdued. Few must-sees in the museum include Anne Frank’s first diary, the hinged bookcase, height marks of Anne Frank and Margot Frank and the map of Normandy.
Van Gogh Museum
A must for art lovers, the museum maintains the world’s largest collection of the works of the world’s most popular artist – Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890), his paintings, drawings and letters. The permanent collection in the museum features over 200 paintings, 500 drawings but also works of other artists, Van Gough’s contemporaries. The museum receives over 1.6 million visitors every year.
Words : Samuel Mathew