The Rijksmuseum, which means ‘State Museum’ in English, has been in existence for more than two hundred years and is now one of the most amazing museums in the world. During its existence, the museum has undergone many changes and today, especially after its complete renovation, it remains the must-see attraction of any trip to the Netherlands.
History of the Rijksmuseum
The Rijksmuseum opened its collection to the public in 1800 as the Nationale Kunstgallerij (National Art Gallery). Since then it has moved several times before settling in Amsterdam (1808) by decree of the Dutch King Louis Bonaparte, Napoleon’s brother. It was named the Royal Museum and received its present name from the Dutch King Willem in 1815. In 1885, the Rijksmuseum moved into its magnificent building, designed by the Dutch architect Petrus J.H. Cuypers. It was built in the Dutch neo-renaissance style, which was fashionable at the time, using historical neo-gothic elements in the form and decoration.
The unique position that the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam has acquired in the world over the centuries is not only due to its possession of numerous paintings that are masterpieces of Dutch and world art. In addition to masterpieces such as Rembrandt’s ‘Night Watch’, several paintings by Vermeer, Van Dyck and Jan Steen, the museum has a truly exceptional collection of ancient Dutch cultural artefacts, an extensive collection of prints, drawings and classical photographs.
The reconstruction of the Rijksmuseum
The huge collection of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam has outgrown its nineteenth-century building and, since December 2003, has been rebuilt. A new modern exhibition was built and the museum reopened in April 2013 after 10 years of renovation.
How to get there
By public transport :
- By tram (from the central station) - lines 2 or 5 (get off at the Hobbemastraat stop); from other parts of the city - tram 6, 7 or 10 (Spiegelgracht stop). - By bus: 145, 170, 172 (Hobbemastraat stop). Please note that the Museumplein stop is far from the city's museums.
How to visit the museum
Every day from 9 am to 5 pm, 365 days a year. The museum ticket office closes at 16.30.
You are allowed to take photos and film in the museum as long as you do not use a flash, light or tripod.
Ticket price: 20 euros 23,94 dollars 17,38 pounds Free for under 18s
Address Museumstraat 11071 XX Amsterdam