What's On in Amsterdam May 2018
May is a great time to visit Amsterdam, with pleasant late-spring temperatures and plenty to see and do. Check out our insider guide to other things going on in and around the city for May 2018...
Museums & Exhibitions in Amsterdam
Rijksmuseum – Reopened in April 2013 after 10 years of renovation, the Rijksmuseum's rich collection (including Rembrandt's Night Watch) is a must-see in Amsterdam. High Society, exhibition with 35 life-size portraits by great masters of art history. Expected 8 Mar to 3 Jun 2018.
Rijksmuseum Schiphol – Ten Dutch masterpiece paintings are on show on Holland Boulevard at Amsterdam Schiphol airport. Located in the newly refurbished zone between Lounges 2 and 3 (past security), the Rijksmuseum Schiphol is open 24 hours per day with free entry for passengers.
Van Gogh Museum – Popular museum with the world's largest collection of Vincent van Gogh paintings. Van Gogh & Japan, exhibition on how Vincent Van Gogh was inspired by Japanese prints. Expected 23 Mar to 24 Jun 2018.
Anne Frank House - The canal house on Amsterdam's Prinsengracht canal where Anne Frank wrote her famous teenage wartime diary whilst hiding from German occupation. The house and museum is open to visitors though pre-booking is highly recommended.
Hermitage Amsterdam – Showcases an exhibition every 6 months from the vast collection of the grand State Hermitage in St Petersburg, Russia. Exhibition Dutch Masters runs between 7 Oct 2017 and 27 May 2018. Also at the Hermitage is the permanent exhibition Portrait Gallery of the Golden Age.
Outsider Art Museum – This museum at the Hermitage showcases extraordinary art by unconventional artists who have not been formally trained. New Masters introduces more than 70 works by 30 talented contemporary Outsider artists. This also includes Poignant Portraits by Dutch photographer Sander Troelstra who puts a face to these artists. Runs 4 Oct 2017 to 28 May 2018.
Stedelijk – Amsterdam's main modern and contemporary art museum. I Am a Native Foreigner exhibition explores different aspects of the migration theme. Runs 23 Sep 2017 to 3 Jun 2018. Canopy Keith Haring Returns to the Stedelijk, the restored velum canopy by the American grafitti artist is on display above the grand staircase. 12 Oct 2017 to 3 Jun 2018.
MOCO Museum – This new modern and contemporary art museum on Museumplein. Banksy: Laugh Now (includes Beanfield) runs until 31 May 2018; Roy Lichtenstein: Lasting Influence exhibition runs 3 Nov 2017 until 31 May 2018.
National Maritime Museum – Game Changers | Maritime Innovations, features 25 of the most beautiful, exciting and strangest inventions in Dutch maritime history. Runs 6 Oct 2017 to 1 Jul 2018.
Tropenmuseum – Ethnographic museum featuring fascinating exhibitions on non-Western cultures.
Nieuwe Kerk – World Press Photo is a photo exhibition showcasing the best in news photography at the New Church on Dam Square. Runs 20 Apr to 1 Jul 2018.
National Holocaust Museum – The newly opened museum presents Tangible Memories from the Jewish Monument, exhibition of objects, photos and documents of people affected by the Holocaust. Opened 2 Sep 2016, ongoing until end 2019.
Jewish Historical Museum – Maria Austria, Living for Photography, comprehensive exhibition about the famous Amsterdam-Jewish photographer Maria Austria (1915-1975). Runs 26 Jan to 2 Sep 2018.
ARCAM – ARCAM presents a crash course (€7.50) on Amsterdam architecture and urbanism every Friday 1330-1415.
Body Worlds – Display of human body plastinate specimens at the permanent venue on Damrak. The exhibition focuses on happiness.
Check out our comprehensive Amsterdam museums section
Sport in Amsterdam
Friday Night Run – Free monthly 1 hour run organised by running group Phanos. Meet at Olympic Stadium Amsterdam at 1930 on Friday 11 May 2018.
Friday Night Skate – 20km organised skate around the streets of Amsterdam held every Friday night (2030, weather permitting) from Vondelpark Pavilion.
See the full annual sport calendar for Amsterdam
Festivals in Amsterdam
Rolling Kitchens– The Rollende Keukens food festival (free entry) features dozens of mobile kitchens and food trucks offering appetising dishes plus live music. Scheduled 9-13 May 2018 (11th edition) at Westergasfabriek, Amsterdam.
BierOost Festival – Beer festival plus food, games and live music at Jaap Eden IJsbaan (ice rink), expected May 2018, dates unconfirmed.
See our complete festival calendar for Amsterdam
Comedy & Shows in Amsterdam
Amsterdam Magic Show – Amsterdam Magic Show – Monthly magic and comedy show with international performers. At Boom Chicago's Rozentheater, Rozengracht in Amsterdam, Tuesday 1 May 2018 at 2000.
Boom Chicago – Comedy and improv show held Wed - Sat and playing at Rozentheater on Rozengracht.
Classical Concerts & Theatre in Amsterdam
Toneelgroep Amsterdam – Amsterdam's renowned theatre company performs shows in Dutch which have live English surtitles above the stage - usually on Thursday evenings at the Stadsschouwburg theatre. Performances in May are: Oedipus (10/17 May 2018, 2000).
Dutch National Opera & Ballet – Perform opera Gurre-Lieder (Schönberg), various between 18 Apr - 5 May 2018; opera La Clemenza di Tito (Mozart), various between 7-24 May 2018; ballet Ode to the Master, various between 1-13 May 2018; ballet Grimm, various 11 Apr - 27 May 2018.
Portuguese Synagogue Candlelight Concert – Features the Carel Kraayenhof Ensemble, 24 May 2018 (2000).
Other Events in Amsterdam and Netherlands
Netherlands Public Holidays May 2018 – 10 May (Ascension Day) and 21 May (Whit Monday).
National Remembrance Day – Ceremony commemorating the war dead, held in Dam Square on 4 May. A 2 minute silence is held nationwide at 2000. Theater Na De Dam are special theatre performances (mainly in Dutch) inspired by World War 2 held between 2100 and 0000 after the 4 May remembrance service on Dam Square. Various locations around Amsterdam.
Liberation Day – Various events throughout Amsterdam including the main evening concert on the river Amstel from 2100 on 5 May 2018.
De Balie – The multimedia venue near Leidseplein in Amsterdam hosts regular events about current affairs, politics and culture.
3D Print Canal House – See a canal house being constructed using 3D printing techniques and sustainable materials. The location is Asterweg 49, 1031 HM Amsterdam - get the free ferry across to Amsterdam North and walk beyond EYE Film. Visit by appointment only or take the walk-in tour (€7.50) which runs every first Wednesday of the month at 1500.
Keukenhof – The world famous tulip and flower park is open between 22 Mar 2018 and 13 May 2018.
Free Concerts in Amsterdam
Bimhuis – Jazz venue has free Workshop & Session every Tuesday at 2000.
Concertgebouw – Free lunchtime concerts usually held every Wednesday at 1230 in either the small hall (kleine zaal) or large hall (grote zaal). For concerts in the small hall, free tickets must be collected from the ticket desk. Note, only one concert this month on 9 May 2018.
Dutch Opera & Ballet – Free lunchtime concert in the foyer on Tuesdays at 1230. Concerts on 1/8/29 May 2018. Performed by members of Opera Studio, the Netherlands Opera or Dutch Philharmonic orchestra.
Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ – Free monthly concert showcasing young classical talent. 3/24 May 2018 at 1230.
Westerkerk – Free lunchtime church organ concert every Friday at 1300.
Market Events in Amsterdam
Pure Markt – Regular market event with high quality produce, music, food stalls and other activities. At Amstelpark 13 May 2018 (1100-1800) and Park Frankendael, 27 May 2018 (1100-1800).
Sunday Market – Sunday market at Westergasfabriek with a mix of fashion, design, arts, food and kids stuff. 6 May 2018 (1200-1800).
Museum Market – Museumplein hosts this Sunday market with arts and crafts, food and music on 20 May 2018 (1200-1800).
IJ-Hallen – Huge weekend flea market event held at NDSM-wharf in north Amsterdam. Dates to be announced.
Rock & Pop Concerts in Amsterdam
Sam Smith – 2/5 May, Ziggo Dome
Beth Hart – 12 May, Ziggo Dome
Fun Lovin' Criminals – 10/11 May, Paradiso
Lara Fabian – 17 May, AFAS Live
Katy Perry – 26/27 May, Ziggo Dome