NEMO Science Museum is a science and technology museum located in one of Amsterdam’s most renowned buildings.
NEMO is great for both kids and adults alike, with exhibitions academically designed in order to inspire and actively stimulate the mind.
The NEMO building is in the striking form of a green ship hull sited on top of the IJ river car tunnel – particularly appropriate considering Amsterdam’s rich maritime history.
Opened in 1997, the NEMO building was designed by famous Italian architect Renzo Piano whose other work includes Pompidou Centre (Paris), Potzdammer Platz (Berlin) and the Shard (London).
NEMO has a collection of around 19,500 artefacts which tell the broad story of humanity and energy. The core collection is particularly focussed on lighting, electrical engineering, energy generation/storage and early 20th century home technology.
Spread over 5 floors, there are a number of fascinating science-themed exhibitions with plenty of hands-on equipment. The permanent exhibits at NEMO currently on show are named and themed as follows:
Fenomena (Level 1) – ‘experience how science works’ – exhibitions: Sensational Science, Science throughout the Ages.
Technium (Level 2) – ‘unravel everyday technology’ – exhibitions: World of Shapes, The Machine, Energize, Water Power, Constructions, Innovation Gallery.
Elementa (Level 3) – ‘learn about the building blocks of the cosmos’ – exhibitions: Life in the Universe, Laboratory.
Humania (Level 4) – ‘discover more about who you are’ – exhibitions: Humania.
Energetica (Level 5) – ‘play with energy’ – exhibitions: Energetica.
There are several entertaining shows, demonstrations and lab projects everyday. Exhibits are labelled in Dutch and English.
Facilities include a bookshop, a café (2nd floor) and the museum restaurant – located on the 5th floor at NEMO’s sloping roof terrace which offers panoramic views of Amsterdam. The terrace is also accessible to non-museum visitors and includes the interactive Energetica exhibition with a renewable energy theme.
NEMO De Studio
Opened in 2021, NEMO De Studio (The Studio) is an off-site location which presents science and technology exhibitions for more adult audiences. It is located in the Marineterrein area of Amsterdam. The small building used to be a gym for Netherlands Marine Corps.
The inaugural exhibition at NEMO Studio was Bits of You (5 Jun 2021 to 1 May 2022) which looked at the digital world of data privacy and algorithms.
The current NEMO Studio exhibition is Energy Junkies (running 8 Jun 2022 to 1 Jun 2023) which is about the effects of energy consumption on society.
NEMO Schiphol – NEMO also has 5 interactive installations located on Holland Boulevard between piers E and F (departures side) of Amsterdam Schiphol airport, freely open to passengers.
How To Book NEMO Science Museum Tickets
To visit NEMO you must book a ticket and an entry timeslot online in advance. It is not possible to turn up and buy a ticket over-the-counter at the museum. Note, even those with an Iamsterdam City Card and Museumkaart must pre-book their timeslot!
Timeslots can be especially busy during the Dutch school holidays. Live ticket availability can be seen here:
NEMO Science Museum Essential Info
|Opening Times||NEMO is open 1000-1730 Tue-Sun, closed Mondays except July and August and Dutch school holidays.|
NEMO De Studio is open 1200-1730 Wed-Sun, closed Mon-Tue.
|Admission Prices (2022)||Entry to NEMO costs €17.50. Whilst children 0-3 get in for free, those 4 and over have to pay the full admission price. Museumkaart and Iamsterdam City Card holders get free entry.|
NEMO tickets are valid at NEMO De Studio. Entry to De Studio only costs €7.50 – this ticket is not valid at the main NEMO museum. Free entrance for Museumkaart and Iamsterdam City card holders.
Alternatively, order the Iamsterdam City Card online here which includes free entrance to NEMO and NEMO De Studio.
|Getting There||NEMO is easily reached walking east from Amsterdam Central Station towards Oosterdok (15 mins walk). By public transport take GVB bus 43 (direction: Borneo Eiland) from the Central station IJ-side. Get out at stop Kadijksplein and walk 5-10 mins.|
NEMO De Studio is located in building 027A of the Marineterrein. Although just across the water from NEMO, it takes about 15 minutes to walk there. From NEMO walk via Prins Hendrikkade, pass the Maritime Museum and continue about 200m when you can enter left into the terrain entrance at Kattenburgerstraat 5. Follow signs from there.
NEMO Science Museum, Oosterdok 2, 1011 VX Amsterdam
T: +31(0)20 531 3233, nemosciencemuseum.nl
Last updated 8 September 2022. This article was first published in 2008 and has been regularly updated.