A true center of Amsterdam for art lovers is Museumplein, where three biggest city museums are located. Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum and Stedelijk Museum are the most visited ones in The Netherlands and are home of some of the most famous Dutch art masterpieces.
It is also one of a few large grassy areas in Amsterdam, so it’s very popular place for the afternoon picnics, sunbathing and mingling.
So, what can you find there?
Three major museums (together with Diamond Museum just across the road), huge green area with bike lanes and walking paths on it, café dedicated to the Cobra art movement with a large summer terrace, museum shop and a pool that is frozen during the winter in order to become an ice skating area. Very often an open air exhibitions are held here together with music festivals and various celebrations.
The largest Dutch museum is dedicated to arts and history. It is also the most visited museum in The Netherlands with 2,2 million visitors in 2013 and 2,45 million in 2014. Its highlights are works of Old Dutch Masters with paintings of Rembrandt, Frans Halls and Johannes Vermeer among them. Most famous painting here is Rembrandt’s “Night Watch”.
Museum for modern and contemporary art and design contains works of V. van Gogh, W. Kandinsky, E. L. Kirchner, M. Chagal, H. Matisse, J. Pollock, A. Warhol, Gilbert and George. Great temporary exhibitions are organized very often (recently Kazimir Malevich and the Russian Avant-garde, The oasis of Matisse etc.), so it is good to check their web site now and then to see what is on display at the moment.
Van Gogh Museum
Famous museum was opened in 1973 as an extension of Stedelijk Museum. It has the largest collection of Van Gogh’s pieces in the world. Painting workshops are organized here as well, so after visiting museum you can go to one of the workshops and try to paint still-life yourself. Don’t forget that 2015 is the year of Van Gogh, so special events will be organized in a museum, as well (you can find more info about it here.)
There is really a lot to do here for the whole day, from visiting museums, having a lunch in nearby restaurants or having picnic on the square. The whole area is full of small galleries, so it’s a great place to discover an artistic Amsterdam. They are especially highly concentrated in Nieuwe Spiegelstraat.
TIP: Museumplein is a popular area in Amsterdam and can get very crowded here. Long queues are often formed in front of the museums (especially Van Gogh Museum). This is why it is always wisely to visit it earlier in the morning when there is not so many people around.
Already visited Museumplein? Which one is your favorite museum there? Let me know your thoughts in comments below.