MuseumsThings To Do

Allard Pierson Amsterdam

Allard Pierson is an archaeological museum located in the heart of Amsterdam. It incorporates the collections of the former Allard Pierson Museum and Special Collections of the University of Amsterdam.

The museum was rebranded as the Allard Pierson in 2019 with a completely new permanent presentation called ‘From the Nile to the Amstel’. The collection covers 10,000 years of history starting with Ancient Egypt and is framed as a journey to the river Amstel.

The renovation of the museum is still ongoing with full completion due in 2020.

allard pierson amsterdam

The museum is named after Mr Allard Pierson (1831-1896), the first professor of Classical Archaeology at the University of Amsterdam. The museum first opened its doors way back in 1934 at Sarphatistraat but has been at its current central location, a grand former bank building since 1976.

The collection includes artefacts such as pottery, coins, glassware, jewellery, statues and the like from the Egyptian, Greek, near East, Etruscan and Roman empires. Rather than display each region separately as was done previously, the new installation covers the broad themes Power and Politics, Mobility and Trade, Daily Life and Death and Religion.

allard pierson collection

This has provided a much-needed improvement in the display with clear information labelled in both Dutch and English. An audio tour also offers extra context to a variety of objects and explores issues such as migration and gender.

The collection also includes some mummies from Ancient Egypt – some of these can be seen in a temporary display room. Note, the full Egyptian collection will not be available until 2020.

allard pierson amsterdamThe ArcheoHotspot room is a lab where you can get a hands-on feel for archaeology. You can help the archeologist at work with various tasks or ask questions.

The museum goes beyond archaeology and also houses an extensive heritage collection which includes the history of books, Jewish culture, church history, cartography, literature, graphic design and zoology.

The new presentation Amsterdam, Creative City 1600-1900 features books, manuscripts, maps and prints from the city.

In addition to the permanent displays the museum also holds 2 major temporary exhibitions each year.

The museum can offer special group tours for up to 15 people at extra charge – please contact the museum to book in advance. There is a small museum café near the entrance.

If you have an interest in ancient history and archaeology the Allard Pierson is well worthy of a visit.

Note, the Allard Pierson Museum was closed between 13 March and 31 May 2020 due to coronavirus measures. Since reopening on 1 June it is mandatory to pre-book a ticket and timeslot in order to maintain 1.5m social distancing. There are a limited number of visitors allowed and one-way walking routes are in effect.

Allard Pierson Essential Info

Opening Times 1000-1700 Tue-Sun. Closed Mondays.
Admission Prices (2020) €10.00 for adults, €5.00 for children 4-18. Free entry for children 0-3, Museumkaart and Iamsterdam City Card holders.
Getting There The Allard Pierson is located on Oude Turfmarkt which runs parallel to Rokin, near the Spui. It is a short walk from Dam Square. From Amsterdam Central Station it is 10-15 minutes walk or take either metro line 52 or trams 4, 14 or 24 to stop Rokin.

Allard Pierson, Oude Turfmarkt 127-129, 1012 GC Amsterdam
T: +31(0)20 525 7300,

Related Articles