Amsterdam is home to more than 400 museums, including some of the most unique ones found around the globe. However, not everyone thinks about going to the different museums and art galleries while in the area, mostly because when they make their plans they think the only thing to see is the Red Light District. Nothing could be further from the truth. There is so much more to see and do, including exploring these five unique museums.
Anne Frank House
+31 20 556 7105
A visit to the Anne Frank House will take guests back in time when Jewish wartime diarist, Anne Frank, had to hide with her family to avoid Nazi persecution. The museum is one of the most unusual museums in the world, showcasing the tragic life of this historic 13-year-old. This museum features the original bookcase which hid the secret passage to the attic, interactive exhibits about human rights, her original diary and other manuscripts. Part of the original family home is also included in the museum. Current exhibits at the Anne Frank House include Fritx Pfeffer — Anne’s roommate, Diary Room, A Museum With A Story and Reflections On Anne Frank.
Amsterdam’s Anatomical Museum
+31 20 566 9111
There are many wonders and discoveries made involving human and animal anatomy, including abnormalities, which are not for the faint of heart. The different aspects of human and animal anatomy are showcased that the Musem Vrolik, Amsterdam’s Anatomical Museum at the Academic Medical Center. Guests will find everything from embryonic development to interactive exhibits on how the human body works and unique exhibits featuring different congenital malformations. This museum is perfect for anyone with a curiosity of how the body works, and it’s a must-visit for avid Frankenstein fans. Because of the creepy feeling and mildly gross exhibits, the Museum Vrolik is not recommended for those with kids.
Museum of Bags and Purses
1017 CD, Canal Belt
+31 20 524 6452
Explore the largest collection of bags and purses at the Tassenmuseum Hendrijke, also known as the Museum of Bags and Purses. This museum features everything from 17th-century leather pouches to the latest Gucciand Prada handbags. Not to mention the unique collection of 1920s beaded fripperies that are housed in the museum too. There are more than 5,000 bags that date back to the 16th century. However, there is more to what makes this museum unique. The canal-house setting makes this quirky museum comfortable and cozy, creating an atmosphere where purse and bag lovers can spend all day. There are many reasons to visit the Tassenmuseum Hendrijke, and you are sure to discover many of them the moment you walk in the door. Do not forget to grab some coffee or tea at the museum restaurant, featuring a fabulous view of the garden, before going home.
The Sexmuseum Amsterdam
+31 20 622 8376
With more than 500,000 visitors coming to The Sexmuseum Amsterdam, this museum is definitely one of the most unique to visit and one of the most popular museums in Amsterdam. The Sexmuseum features an interesting collection of objects that showcase human sexuality. The many displays include photographs, plates, recordings, objects, china figures, drawings and full-size wax figures of some of the world’s most famous sex figures, such as Mata Hari and Marilyn Monroe. Muffled sounds are played throughout the museum including random screams of passion. There is even a display featuring sex through the ages and how eroticism has been experienced throughout more than 4,000 years of history. Guests must be 16 years of age or older to visit The Sexmuseum Amsterdam.
+31 20 320 6642
Displaying the dark side of history, the Torture Museum shows just how cruel humans can be. This museum has a variety of exhibits and displays that feature torture rooms, devices and other tactics used to cause pain and often death for other human beings. On display are a variety of torture devices include the Guillotine, the rack, the stocks, hanging devices, judas chair, iron maiden, a skull crusher and many others. Many of the devices on display are genuine, while some have been reconstructed. Tours are available to take guests through the history of torture and the devices used. Due to the dark and morbid content featured in this museum, it is not recommended for those with small children.
Amsterdam has so many things to see and do, you will quickly discover how much fun you will have while exploring the different museums the area has to offer. When visiting, don’t let the popular pastimes in Amsterdam obscure the chance to see some of the most unique exhibits in the world.