The next installment of my top 5 European cities to visit this summer is all about Amsterdam, Netherlands. If you would like to you can check out my previous top 5’s about Paris and Budapest by clicking on them. At the end of this post you will have another chance to vote on your favourtie European city.
Het Grachtenhuis (the Canal House Museum)
Located in the 17th century Patrician house, the Canal House Museum explains the construction of the canals of Amsterdam. This small exhibit takes only an hour or so to take in but should not be overlooked. A unique look at the city, its three major canal rings and how it all came to be, should be a first on the list of places of interest on your visit to the city. This is a UNESCO registered historical monument that has a lot to say about the area. The exhibit is open Tuesday through Sunday, except on Christmas and Queens Day.
The Royal Palace Amsterdam
This Palace, located on the west side of Dam Square, was originally open in July 1655, was originally erected to be the Town Hall of Amsterdam. The building was converted to from a town hall to a palace by Louis Napoleon who was Napoleon Bonaparte’s brother. There are some interesting paintings inside the palace, one of which was done by Rembrandt. The marble floor is a work of art within itself. It depicts a map of the two hemispheres and and show though they once showed the regions explored by the Dutch East India Company, after being replaced in the mid 18th century they now exhibit Amsterdam’s colonial influence.
Considered one of the finest acoustic concert halls in the world, the Concertgebouw was opened in 1888. After it’s completion, the acoustics were less than desirable. This spurred on great effort to correct the issue and indeed they did. In the nineteen eighties, renovations were made to the building after it was discovered that the building was sinking into the ground. Great care was taken to maintain the interiors original materials and sound specifications. The concert hall is said to host over nine hundred public concerts a year, this makes it not only easy to choose a show, it also make it one of the most visited concert halls in the world.
This science museum, located at located at the Oosterdok in Amsterdam-Centrum, in an amazing building that was designed by Renzo Piano. Hands on science exhibits span five floors of the largest science museum in the Netherlands. The large greenish, copper clad building is quite unmistakeable. It hosts approximately 500,000 visitors every year and is a great destination for all ages. A very kid friendly day trip. There are many things to see and experience. From DNA and magnets to chain reactions and the human mind, you can do it all at the NEMO. Finding NEMO: Look between Oosterdokseisland and Kattenburg.
Rembrandt – All His Paintings
See all of Rembrandt’s paintings in one convenient location. The exhibit, which can be found in Magna Plaza in beautiful downtown Amsterdam, is open seven days a week. The life sized reproductions of Rembrandt’s paintings and etchings Have been digitally restored and and will enhance the appreciation of all who visit. The works are displayed in such a chronological order as to show the artist’s progression through time. Though the works are digital prints, they themselves are an amazing display of art and technology. You can also view a short film on the Dutch painter and leave with a greater understanding of him, his techniques and his art in general.
I hope you enjoyed the top 5 things I would love to see and do in Amsterdam. If you would like to see me visit Amsterdam this summer then please vote for it in the poll below,you can also vote for Paris or Budapest, or even Prague or Rome (my top 5 things to do coming soon).