12 Must-See Museums in the Netherlands

October 6th, 2023

Looking for a day out in Amsterdam or elsewhere in the Netherlands? Then consider an adventurous journey through the art, history, and culture of the city – yes, I’m talking about paying a visit to the fantastic museums in the Netherlands!  These Dutch museums are a hidden treasure you absolutely shouldn’t miss. Whether you’re an art enthusiast, a history buff, or just looking for an engaging day out, the museums in Holland have something for everyone.

From the renowned Rijksmuseum, where you can marvel at Rembrandt’s masterpieces, to the Van Gogh Museum showcasing the colourful works of Vincent van Gogh, the variety is astounding. But that’s not all! You’ll also find Dutch museums dedicated to science, technology, and even comic books. For families, there are numerous child-friendly museums where kids can learn while having fun. And once you’ve conquered all the museums in Amsterdam, you can take a short car or train journey to other fantastic museums in the Netherlands.

12 Must-See Museums in the Netherlands

1. The Rijksmuseum

the Rijkmuseum in Amsterdam, one of the best museums in Amsterdam
Opening Times: Daily, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, also known as the ‘Museum Amsterdam,’ is undoubtedly a top destination for an outstanding day out. This museum is like a treasure chest overflowing with Dutch history and art that enchants you from the moment you step inside. It’s not just the home to iconic artworks like Rembrandt’s “The Night Watch,” but also provides a captivating journey through the centuries with art, crafts, and historical artefacts.

What makes this famous Amsterdam museum so impressive is that it not only breathes history but also offers interactive experiences like ‘The Secrets of the Masters,’ where you can discover how artists created their masterpieces. Whether you’re an art connoisseur or just seeking a fun day in Amsterdam, the Rijksmuseum has something to offer everyone. And to top it off, you can enjoy a cup of coffee in the charming Atrium before delving back into the city. So, what are you waiting for? Immerse yourself in Dutch history and turn your day out into an unforgettable adventure at the Rijksmuseum!

2. The Van Gogh Museum

Van Gogh painting in the Van Gogh museum
Opening Times: Daily, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
A day out to visit the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam is like a journey through the colourful mind of one of the world’s most famous artists. Here, you can not only enjoy Vincent van Gogh’s beautiful paintings but also feel a deeper connection to his life and work. As you wander through the galleries, you can admire the evolution of his art, from his early realistic works to the bold colours and brushstrokes of his later masterpieces. What makes this museum so enjoyable is that it’s not just about looking at art but also about understanding how Van Gogh thought, felt, and created. You can read his letters, listen to audio guides that tell his story, and even participate in workshops to grasp his techniques.

3. The Anne Frank House

Opening Times: Daily, 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM
The Anne Frank House in Amsterdam is undoubtedly an impressive museum that will deeply move you. This museum takes you into the poignant story of Anne Frank, a Jewish girl who hid during World War II and wrote her remarkable diary. When you enter the house where Anne and her family hid, you get a glimpse of the hardships and fears they endured. You see the rooms they lived in and the authentic diary pages Anne wrote, bringing the story to life in a profoundly touching way. The museum also provides insight into the Holocaust and the horrors of that period.

4. The Railway Museum

the train in the train museum in Amsterdam
Opening Times: Tuesday to Sunday, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
The Railway Museum in Utrecht offers an exciting journey back in time, but this time with trains! Here, you have the opportunity to experience the history of railways in the Netherlands in a way that appeals to both young and old. You can admire old steam locomotives, explore vintage train carriages, and even take a ride on an authentic steam train. For the little ones (and secretly for the grown-ups too), there’s a dedicated children’s play area where they can play and learn about trains. The museum also regularly hosts events and exhibitions that bring the world of railways to life. So, whether you’re a train enthusiast or simply seeking a unique day out, the Railway Museum promises an adventurous and nostalgic experience you won’t soon forget.


the NEMO museum in Amsterdam
Opening Times: Daily, 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Another top museum in the Netherlands is the NEMO Science Museum in Amsterdam. This interactive Dutch museum takes you on an exciting journey through the world of science, technology, and human creativity. Here, you can experiment, play, and let your curiosity run wild. Whether you’re interested in optical illusions, electricity, or even the wonders of the human body, NEMO offers captivating exhibitions and activities for all ages. You can even simulate an earthquake or delve into the world of space exploration in the Space Expo.

6. Netherlands Open Air Museum

visit the netherlands open air museum - one of the best museums in holland
Opening Times:
Daily, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
At number six on our list of the best Dutch museums is the Netherlands Open Air Museum in Arnhem, visitors are in for a captivating journey through time. This museum offers a unique outdoor experience where you can explore historical Dutch buildings, farms, and villages dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. Wander through picturesque landscapes and interact with costumed guides who bring the past to life with traditional crafts, demonstrations, and activities. From authentic windmills to charming wooden houses, every corner reveals a piece of Dutch history and culture. It’s an immersive experience suitable for all ages, allowing you to step back in time and gain a deeper appreciation for the rich heritage of the Netherlands.

7. Philips Museum

Opening Times: Tuesday to Sunday, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
The Philips Museum offers a fascinating insight into the innovative world of one of the most renowned electronics companies. Located in Eindhoven, the birthplace of Philips, this museum showcases the company’s evolution from a small light bulb manufacturer to a global technology giant. Visitors can explore interactive exhibits highlighting groundbreaking inventions, such as the first Philips light bulb and early medical equipment. Learn about the company’s impact on society, from revolutionizing healthcare to shaping modern lifestyles. With engaging displays and hands-on activities, the Philips Museum is not just a tribute to a corporate powerhouse but a celebration of human ingenuity and progress.

8. Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen

Opening Times: Tuesday to Sunday, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen is one of the best museums in the netherlands
Art enthusiasts will be delighted by the diverse collection housed within the walls of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam. This museum boasts an impressive array of artworks spanning centuries and genres, from Old Masters to contemporary installations. Marvel at masterpieces by renowned artists such as Rembrandt, Van Gogh, and Bosch as you wander through carefully curated galleries. In addition to its permanent collection, the museum hosts temporary exhibitions that explore various themes and artistic movements. Whether you’re a seasoned art lover or just beginning to appreciate the beauty of visual expression, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen offers an enriching cultural experience for all.

9. PreHistorisch Dorp

Opening Times: Wednesday to Sunday, 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Step into the past at PreHistorisch Dorp in Eindhoven, where history comes alive in a reconstructed prehistoric village. This outdoor Dutch museum offers a hands-on journey through different periods of Dutch history, from the Stone Age to the Middle Ages. Wander along ancient pathways lined with thatched-roof houses, workshops, and gardens, all meticulously recreated to reflect authentic archaeological findings. Engage with costumed interpreters who demonstrate traditional crafts, cooking techniques, and daily activities of our ancestors. Whether you’re weaving textiles, shaping pottery, or trying your hand at ancient games, PreHistorisch Dorp provides a captivating glimpse into the lives of early settlers in the Netherlands.

10. Volendam Museum

visit the volendam museum as one of the best dutch museums
Opening Times: Daily, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of Volendam at the Volendam Museum, located in the picturesque fishing village on the shores of the IJsselmeer. This museum celebrates the rich heritage and traditions of this iconic Dutch community through a diverse collection of artefacts, photographs, and artworks. Explore exhibits that showcase Volendam’s maritime history, traditional costumes, and famous residents, including renowned artists and musicians. Step into recreated interiors of historic homes and shops to experience daily life in Volendam throughout the ages. With its immersive displays and charming ambience, the Volendam Museum offers a delightful glimpse into the soul.

11. Cheese Museum (Kaasmuseum)

Opening Times: Monday to Saturday, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Indulge your senses in the rich flavours and traditions of Dutch cheese at the Cheese Museum (Kaasmuseum). Located in the heart of cheese-producing regions like Gouda or Alkmaar, this Dutch museum offers a delectable journey through the history, craftsmanship, and cultural significance of cheese in the Netherlands. Explore exhibits showcasing the cheese-making process from farm to table, featuring interactive displays, vintage equipment, and multimedia presentations. Learn about iconic Dutch cheeses such as Gouda, Edam, and Leyden, and discover the stories behind their distinctive flavours and textures. Sample a variety of cheeses, attend cheese-tasting sessions, and even try your hand at cheese-making under the guidance of expert cheesemakers. Whether you’re a cheese connoisseur or simply curious about this beloved Dutch delicacy, the Cheese Museum promises a savoury experience that’s sure to leave you craving more.

12. Madurodam

Madurodam is one of the best dutch museums
Opening Times: Daily, 9:00 AM – 8:00 PM
Closing our list of the best museums in the Netherlands is Madurodam in The Hague, this outdoor park pays homage to Dutch landmarks and landscapes, meticulously recreated in miniature form. Stroll through charming replicas of iconic Dutch buildings, bridges, and landmarks, each crafted with astonishing detail and accuracy. From the grandeur of Amsterdam’s canals to the windmills of Kinderdijk, Madurodam allows visitors to explore the essence of the Netherlands in a single visit. Interactive exhibits, informative displays, and multimedia presentations offer insights into Dutch culture, innovation, and history. Kids and adults alike will marvel at the intricate craftsmanship and creative storytelling that bring this miniature world to life.

Practical Information about Museums in the Netherlands

Do you pay for museums in Holland?

van gogh museum in amsterdam
Yes, in general, visitors are required to pay to enter most museums in Holland. The ticket prices can vary depending on the museum and the type of exhibition or special events being held. However, there are some exceptions and discounts available:

  • Museumkaart: If you plan to visit multiple museums during your stay in the Netherlands, investing in a Museumkaart (Museum Card) could be a cost-effective option. This card allows unlimited access to over 400 museums across the country for a set period, typically one year. It’s worth considering if you intend to explore the rich cultural heritage of Holland extensively.
  • Free Museum Days: Some museums offer free admission on specific days of the week or month. It’s advisable to check the museum’s website or contact them directly to inquire about any free entry opportunities.
  • Discounted Tickets: Many museums offer discounted admission for students, seniors, children, and groups. Be sure to inquire about available discounts at the museum’s ticket desk or when booking tickets online.
  • Combination Tickets: Some museums offer combination tickets that include admission to multiple attractions or exhibitions at a discounted rate. This can be a convenient option if you plan to visit several museums in the same area.

While most museums in Holland do require an entrance fee, the cultural and educational experiences they offer are often well worth the ticket price!

What is the most visited museum in the Netherlands?

The most visited museum in the Netherlands is none other than the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. Drawing millions of visitors each year, the Rijksmuseum stands as a testament to the rich cultural heritage of the Netherlands.

Elevate Someone’s Holiday to Holland with our Activity Vouchers

A woman holds an activity voucher on dam square in amsterdam
A day out to a museum in the Netherlands is not only entertaining but also educational. It allows you to delve into the rich history and culture of the city while having a great time. So, what are you waiting for? Gift an activity voucher and take your friends or family on an unforgettable day out to an Amsterdam museum for an experience you’ll treasure for years to come.

With this activity gift card, your recipient can easily redeem it online on over 50,000 global gift experiences. So, if you know someone with a special occasion approaching that just can’t get enough of fun new experiences, you’ve got to buy them an activity gift voucher! And they won’t be tied down to just museums, but can enjoy thrilling activities, spooky activities, romantic activities and even eco-friendly activities.

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