Amsterdam

Population:745,811
Time Zone:UTC+2
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Anne Frank House
Anne Frank is one of Amsterdam’s most well known former residents. The Anne Frank House at Prinsengracht 263 in Amsterdam is where she lived in hiding with her family for more than two years during World War II. Now converted into a museum it contains a sobering exhibition about the persecution of the Jews during the war, as well as discrimination in general. The rooms at the Anne Frank House still portray the atmosphere of the period spent in hiding. Historical documents, photographs, film images and original objects that belonged to those in hiding and those who assisted them help illustrate the events that took place. Anne’s original diary and other notebooks are also on display in the museum.
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Rijksmuseum
The Rijksmuseum is one of Amsterdam’s grandest and most popular museums. Its vast collection showcases iconic art and a wide variety of artefacts that reflect more than 800 years of Dutch and global history, including jaw dropping paintings by the likes of Rembrandt, Van Gogh and countless more Dutch greats. With 80 galleries and 8000 objects on display, there’s never enough time to view the complete collection of treasures! Before you’re even inside the museum, you can enjoy the artistic whimsy of the sculpture-filled garden designed by Pierre Cuypers in 1901. Among the intricate topiaries, water features and colourful flowerbeds, an enormous wingnut tree looks over the play areas, installations and temporary exhibitions in the summer. And also its is only in Amsterdam would a national museum allow cyclists to speed right through it! The Rijksmuseum’s passageway connects the two halves of the atrium, with glass panels giving passers by a glimpse into the museum’s grand interior. The passage’s excellent acoustics make it popular among street musicians.
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Jordaan
The Jordaan is possibly the most famous neighbourhood in the Netherlands. Akin to the reputation enjoyed by London’s Cockneys, this once working-class bastion was renowned for tight community bonds, radical politics and a love for drink and over-the-top sing-a-longs. Gentrification of decades past has attracted more galleries, restaurants, specialty shops and upwardly-mobile residents to its scenic streets but there’s undeniably still a distinct atmosphere to be enjoyed here. The Jordaan begins at Brouwersgracht, just west of the Amsterdam Central Station and arches around the western side of Canal Ring between Prinsengracht and Lijnbaansgracht before ending at Leidsegracht. The area north of Rozengracht is a more ‘touristy’ and commercial section, although the quieter area to the south is no less scenic.
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Van Gogh Museum
The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam is one of the most popular museums in the world, attracting visitors from every corner of the globe. Naturally, this is in large part due to it housing the largest collection of works by Vincent van Gogh – more than 200 paintings, 500 drawings and 700 of his letters. Having originally opened on Museumplein in 1973, the Van Gogh Museum has been expanded and modernised over the years, ensuring it's a truly cutting-edge exhibition and visitor space. For both locals and far-travelling visitors, the Van Gogh Museum is a unique and inspirational experience. Alongside the legacy of Vincent van Gogh's instantly recognisable impressionist works, such as his landscapes, self-portraits and still lifes – especially ‘Sunflowers’ – the museum provides opportunities to track the artist's development and compare his paintings to works by other artists from the 19th century – those who inspired him and those who drew inspiration from him.
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The Hermitage
The biggest branch of the world-famous Hermitage in Saint Petersburg can be found in Amsterdam. Discover top works from the Russian collection in changing exhibitions. The museum was established in the Amstelhof, a monumental building on the Amstel river, in 2009. The art collection of the Hermitage in Saint Petersburg had become so extensive that the museum decided to put a range of works on display in branches. The biggest of these can be found in Amsterdam. The Russian art was initially on display in a small building but the Hermitage in the Amstelhof opened its doors in 2009. Just a year later, the museum welcomed its one millionth visitor. The Hermitage is one of the top attractions in Amsterdam.
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Dam Square
Dam Square is Amsterdam’s beating heart. Nowadays Dam Square in contrast with the old days it is now a very peaceful square which is home to scores of pigeons and street performers. Dam Square has had a turbulent history. Around 1270 a damn was constructed in this spot in the river Amstel. Dam Square was once the central marketplace of Amsterdam where literally everything under the moon was sold. The Royal Palace and the Nieuwe Kerk Amsterdam are also situated at Dam Square. Other nearby highlights are the red light district, the narrowest house in Amsterdam at Singel 7 and the shopping mall Magna Plaza.
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Stedelijk Museum
A visit to the Stedelijk Museum takes the visitor on a journey through the last 150 years of art, presenting the best of modern art in Amsterdam. Iconic works by Karel Appel, Cézanne, Chagall, Marlene Dumas, Kandinsky, Edward Kienholz, De Kooning, Koons, Malevich, Matisse, Mondrian, Picasso, Pollock, Gerrit Rietveld, Warhol and many others are on show. The Stedelijk Museum’s design collection also traces the history of design from the turn of the last century to the present, showcasing furniture, ceramics, posters, jewellery and other objects.
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Farmers Markets
The most trendy of the Amsterdam markets, has began in 1987 when Adri Vallentin, then owner of the popular cafe called Winkel (English: Shop) on the Noordermarkt, has setup nine biological food stalls, hoping to draw more clients on Saturday morning to his cafe. Traditional market of pigeons and canaries, which for a century stood on Noordermarkt each Saturday morning faltered, but the idea of biological food quickly picked up with the public, and today The Farmers Market on the Noordermarkt is so popular, that it draws crowds not only from the nearby Jordaan, but also from the whole city
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Plaswijck Park
Plaswijck Park has been a small-scale recreational park for over ninety years. It is located on the Bergse Achterplas in Hillegersberg-Schiebroek on the northern edge of Rotterdam. The park used to be known in the 1930s as the earthly paradise. The park currently consists of a Speelwijck (play area), Dierenwijck (animal area) and Wandelwijck (walking area). Speelwijck includes a Port Playground, Monkey Playground and Traffic Playground. And in the event of bad weather, guests can enjoy the House on the Hill, a giant playhouse where kids can jump on a trampoline on beds in the bedroom, squirt bubble bath in the bathroom and crawl and climb through the secret tunnels and passageways. Animals from around the globe live in Dierenwijck, including monkeys, owls, lynxes and goats. Wandelwijck offers various places to relax, including the English Garden and the Picnic Meadow.
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Climbing Park Fun Forest Rotterdam
The climbing park in Rotterdam has 7 different courses in living trees ranging in various heights and levels of difficulty. Climbing may take up to 3 hours max (including instruction), but you can choose to shorten this time. The climbing park is interesting for young and old people, between ages of 7 (length 1.20m) and 80 years old. For the smallest monkeys there’s a free playwood.
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Kijk-Kubus
The Cube Houses (or Pole Houses or Tree Houses) designed by architect Piet Blom are part of the Blaakse Bos development which borders on the Laurenskwartier district and the Waterfront area.
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Laurenskerk
The Laurenskerk, or Church of St. Lawrence, originally arose on the banks of the River Rotte and its location can truly be called the very birthplace of Rotterdam. It is an imposing church built between 1449 and 1525, and it is Rotterdam's only surviving late Gothic building.
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De Markthal
You'll find an indoor market hall in various world-class cities, but the combination with luxury housing makes Rotterdam's Markthal the first of its kind. The apartments are draped over the food market in a horseshoe configuration.
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Diergaarde Blijdorp
Rotterdam Zoo is situated in the district of Blijdorp in Rotterdam Noord. Stroll across the African Savannah and stand face-to-face with the giraffes. Visit Bokito the gorilla and his family. Walk on the seabed in the indoor Oceanarium and meet stingrays and sharks. Stroll through the largest butterfly paradise of Europe: Amazonica, filled with fragrant flowers, thousands of South American butterflies, anacondas and piranhas that love to bite.
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Zypendaal House
Zypendaal House (Huis Zypendaal) is an old-style country house dating from 1762. The ground floor is open to the public. The costly furnishings and many souvenirs of the Brantsen family, the house's former residents, give the house a very intimate feel.
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Netherlands Open Air Museum
Experience history in the Netherlands Open Air Museum (Nederlands Openlucht Museum). Special encounters, smells, images and stories evoke unforgettable memories of everyday life as it used to be.
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The Big or Eusebius Church
The Big Chruch or The Eusebius in Arnhem has dominated the skyline of the city of Arnhem for more than five centuries now and tells the history of the capital of the province of Gelderland from the Middle Ages until the Second World War and the post-war reconstruction.
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Music dome Nering-Boegel
In the middle of the oldest oldest city park in the Netherlands, "Het Worpplantsoen", from 1852 until about 1955 a beautiful music dome stood. When it was demolished, the park also lost its soul. A park restoration followed in 2004 and to give the park its deserved icing on the cake, a group of motivated city dwellers replaced an almost faithful copy of the octogonal music dome.
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Museum De Waag
Museum De Waag brings city history to life! How did Deventer originate? Which inhabitants played a role in the history of the city? What did the river IJssel mean for the development of Deventer? Visitors to Museum De Waag receive answers to these questions in Flows through time. Deventer, city of the IJssel. This exhibition is on show from 23 June 2017 and tells the historical story of the city in five chapters. Specially developed 3D reconstructions and animations show how Deventer looked in the past.
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Brother Church
The Broederenkerk has a long and rich history from around 1300, when a monastery was established here, where a church was built from around 1335. The Broederen Church, also known as the St. Lebuïnus Church, is a church in Deventer, built between 1335 and 1338 by order of Eleonora of England, then Duchess of Gelre. Before the church was built, a monastery was founded at that place around 1300 by the Franciscan Friars Minor. The name of the church is derived from these brothers. Anyone who takes a look at the Broederenkerk will notice how special this building is in the center of Deventer, both outside and inside.
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PSV Museum
Entrance 17 of Philips Stadium will take you to the PSV Museum where you can relive the most important events in the 100 years' history of PSV. A must-see for every PSV supporter, in fact, for every football fan.
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Temporary Art Centre
Come to TAC (Temporary Art Centre)! Platform for cultural productions and performances, 70 art studios, young experimental stage, theatre, parties, café and restaurant.
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Philips Musuem
The old factory where Philips made his first incandescent lamp, has undergone extensive renovation and been extended to an interactive museum where heritage and innovation come together.
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Frisian Castle
The first buildings to be built in Friesland using natural stone or bricks were stone refuge towers, known in Friesland as ‘stinzen’. ‘Stins’ means stone. These squat towers with rounded peaks served as a refuge for their owners, the farming gentry. These people were the rural aristocracy in Friesland, which had no earls or counts before 1500.
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De Alde Feanen National Park
De Alde Feanen’ national park, which is located between Leeuwarden and Drachten in Northern Friesland, as the largest amusement park in Europe. However, Henk de Vries, director of the nature protection organisation ‘It Fryske Gea’ (the Frisian landscape), and Henk Dijkstra, who is director of the ‘Frysk Lânboumuseum’ agricultural museum, believe doing so is sacrilege.
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Leeuwarden Water Park
In the summertime, Grou is one of Friesland’s busiest and most pleasant water sports centers. It lies to the south of Leeuwarden, the 2018 European Capital of Culture. The local lake, the Pikmeer, functions as a sort of roundabout, from which you can navigate in all directions.
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Museum aan de Stroom
Visitors to Antwerp have been flocking to the hip Eilandje district, an old dockside neighbourhood, to visit the MAS | Museum aan de Stroom, which opened in 2011. This is where the city and the port – the second largest port in Europe even – converge. The stunning architecture and the museum collection are perfect examples of this. The MAS has a phenomenally large collection, which to date comprises about 500,000 items, including artworks and utensils. New objects are constantly being added to the collection. The museum uses its entire collection to weave a new narrative, based on five universal themes, on just as many floors. The MAS takes a closer look at power politics and world ports. At how food shaped and will shape today’s metropolises in the past, present and future. And at life and death, of people and gods, in the upper and under world. Moreover, the third floor and the walking boulevard host some fascinating and highly diverse temporary exhibitions.
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Kuiperspoort
As the name suggests, the Kuipers Guild used to be located in the Kuiperspoort. It is a beautiful courtyard that you pass if you don't pay attention. The Kuiperspoort can be found between the Dam and the Rouaanse Kaai. The houses there are mainly from the second half of the sixteenth century. In the first half of the seventeenth century, the courtyard was bought by the Kuipersgilde. Several companies are now located in the former Kuiper houses, including the Walcheren art education foundation, where various painting and drawing lessons can be taken.
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Zeeuws Museum
The Zeeuws Museum, a special museum focusing on the history of Zeeland, is located in the beautiful old abbey in the city center of Middelburg. Admire historic wall tapestries, beautiful regional costumes, and special finds from Zeeland. The collection of wall tapestries of the Provincial-Executive of Zeeland is the pride of the Zeeuws Museum. The provincial government of Zeeland commissioned a wall tapestry depicting the battle of Bergen op Zoom in 1591. When the tapestry was completed four years later, the Provincial-Executive of the province of Zeeland decided to commission more tapestries depicting naval battles in Zeeland. After a number of relocations during and after WWII, the tapestries have now been reunited at the Abbey of Middelburg.
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Abbey Tower of Long John
You can't miss it, right in the beautiful historic center of Middelburg. Here, the imposing Abbey Tower de Lange Jan rises proudly above the many monuments in Middelburg. You should not miss the climb. It takes a bit of climbing, 207 steps to be precise, but the view is worth this effort. The tower of the Lange Jan is 90.5 meters long (belongs to the top 10 tallest towers in the Netherlands). On clear days you can even see the surrounding Zeeland islands from the Lange Jan.
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Saint James's Church
St James‘ Church is the starting point for pilgrims journeying to the burial place of St James the Greater in Santiago de Compostela. The church is also known for the resting place of Rubens. This church, which is within short walking distance from Antwerp’s main shopping street Meir, is one of the largest churches in Antwerp. Like so many other European cities Antwerp also has a sanctuary for St. James. In the early fifteenth century there was a hospice here, which welcomed Northern European pilgrims travelling to the tomb of the apostle James in Santiago de Compostela. In 1413 a chapel, dedicated to St. James, was added to the hospice. Soon the chapel proved too small. As a consequence construction started on the current church in Brabant Gothic style in 1491. It would take no less than 175 years to complete the church. St. James’s Church served as parish church for several smaller crafts and guilds and religious brotherhoods. The choir was completed during the Baroque period with the tombs and chapels of wealthy families. The most famous memorial chapel is that of the Antwerp Baroque master Peter Paul Rubens. He painted the altarpiece Madonna Surrounded by Saints in the chapel. Elsewhere in the church you can admire a masterpiece by Jacob Jordaens. St. James’s Church has one of the oldest working tower clocks.
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Grote Markt
Grote Markt originally was a forum or square just outside the medieval residential quarter. In 1220 Duke Henry I of Brabant (1165-1235) donated this community land to the city. The name Merckt was used for the first time in 1310. Around this time the first annual markets or foren van Brabant (Brabant fairs) were organised. Here English merchants would do business with Italians, Spaniards and merchants from the Northern German Hanseatic cities as well as from Southern Germany and Flemings of course. At the end of the fifteenth century Antwerp overtook Bruges as the most prominent city of the Low Countries.
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EcoHouse
EcoHuis is Antwerp’s green epicentre. Here you can find out how to build and live sustainably in the city. Visitors with green fingers learn how best to create their own ecological city garden and which animals and plants thrive in the city. Visit the Ecocafé for delicious treats and healthy snacks and juices as well as organic veggie meals.
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The Antwerp Canals (Ruien)
Visit The Ruien, a truly unique attraction, and walk through Antwerp's former canals and sewers. During this adventurous and astonishing underground walk you'll discover some of Antwerp's exciting and rich history. Sewers, streams and ramparts have criss-crossed the city since the Middle Ages. This network of waterways provided Antwerp with drinking water and an inland port. Later, the waterways served as sewers. They were eventually covered with vaulted ceilings. This unique piece of heritage disappeared from view. Now you can rediscover this hidden patrimony. A visit to The Ruien is a walk along old vaulted ceilings, narrow canals, bridges, sewers and sluices. You'll get a peak at the underbelly of the city and hear secretive anecdotes and fascinating facts from the distant and recent past.
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Cathedral of Our Lady
The Cathedral is an iconic treasury, with an impressive collection of major art works, including a series of paintings by Rubens. Now, after twenty years, the seven-naved church has been restored to its former architectural glory. Fascinating features include Rubens’ ‘Elevation of the Cross’ and his ‘Descent from the Cross’. After 169 years of construction the cathedral of Antwerp finally dominated Antwerp's skyline in 1521 with a height of 123 metres. It's the highest Gothic building in the Low Countries. Any visit to Antwerp starts with a visit of the Cathedral of Our Lady!
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Antwerp ZOO
The Antwerp ZOO is one of the oldest and best-known zoos in Europe. It will take you and your parents at least half a day to see and do it all! The penguins live in Vriesland with their own arctic enclosure, elephants and giraffes are as tall as the Egyptian temple they stay in and hippopotamuses goof around in a pink villa. 950 different species and 5000 animals live at the zoo, that’s more than all the sweets you’ll ever eat all in one place! Walk among the chimpanzees and the gorillas in the Valley of the Great Apes. It’s a great place to observe the apes’ antics, as they enjoy the grass under their feet and the wind on their skin. From there you can stroll to the Buffalo Savannah, where Cape Buffalo and birds live in harmony. And as you look out over the new savannah where the giraffes and the zebras live, you really will feel as if you are on an African safari. Don’t forget to check out the Skywalk where you can enjoy a stunning panoramic view over the historical garden and where you can get up close to the red pandas.
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Vlaeykensgang
The secret Vlaeykensgang alley dates from 1591 and connects Hoogstraat, Oude Koornmarkt Pelgrimstraat with one another. Walk through the gate at Oude Koornmarkt 16 and you feel as if you have journeyed back in time. In the past this alley was where the shoemakers and the poorest people in the city lived. The shoemakers were also in charge of sounding the alarm bell of the cathedral. These days you can find antiques stores and art galleries here as well as the exclusive restaurant Sir Anthony Van Dyck. The atmosphere is very intimate which is why many people also like to come here to listen to the carillon concerts during the summertime.
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The Rubens House
In the heart of Antwerp is the home of Peter Paul Rubens, the famous 16th-17th--century Baroque painter. For four hundred years, he and his work have been a source of inspiration and a reference. And to think that he created the bulk of his work in this house. Rubens was a fan of Rafael’s, the Italian painter. It is hardly surprising, therefore, that in 1610, just as his idol, Rubens designed his own city palace. Near the Meir, which has always been a sought-after part of the city. This is the house where Rubens created his masterpieces, his children played in the garden and he received his high, noble and even royal guests. And in the meantime, a team were working hard on his paintings in the studio. At his peak, Rubens could not cope alone and led a team of professional artists.
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Botanical Garden (Plantentuin)
The Botanical Garden along Leopoldstraat is a unique green haven in the city centre. It is a world in one garden, exceptional trees and shrubs, 2000 herbs, cactuses and foreign plants will inspire the plant fundi. Built almost 200 years ago, it grew only medicinal plants to supply the St Elisabeth’s hospital next door. The city has managed the garden since 1926 and in 1950 the Botanical Garden was listed as a valuable landscape for the city of Antwerp and its inhabitants. Indeed it is not to be missed!
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Houwerzijl Tea Museum
The tea factory and tea museum are housed in an old church and parsonage. Learn all there is to know about the production and different kinds of tea. The tearoom has the most extensive tea menu in the world, and there are different kinds of tea available in the tea shop.
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The mills
The mills in the province of Groningen provide a wonderful image of agricultural developments. The mills had their own specific function; there are flourmills, hulling mills, sawmills and water mills. The Groninger Molenhuis supports mill owners in keeping or restoring their mills.