One of Amsterdam’s best known attractions is the Van Gogh Museum on Museumplein located in the pleasant museum quarter of the city.
The museum houses the world’s largest collection of paintings by infamous Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh who lived between 1853 and 1890 – which makes it a “must-see” for visitors to Amsterdam.
The Van Gogh Museum originally opened in 1973 having been designed by Dutch architect Gerrit Rietveld, who actually died before it was built. The modern exhibition wing was added in 1999, designed by Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa. A spectacular new glass entrance hall on the Museumplein side was opened in September 2015.
Over 3 levels it contains a permanent collection of Van Gogh’s paintings, drawings and letters. The collection is supplemented by works from some of Van Gogh’s 19th century contemporaries – such as Monet and Gaugin.
The Van Gogh paintings are divided in sections. From his darker early work in Netherlands including The Potato Eaters from 1885 and the Skull of a Skeleton with a Burning Cigarette 1886 to his move to Paris (1886-88) where he produced many of his iconic self-portraits.
Finally we see the more colourful South of France period including The Yellow House 1888 and Sunflowers 1889 leading up to his death in 1890.
The Van Gogh Museum has always attracted long queues of visitors. As of 2019 it is now obligatory to pre-book a time-slot ticket online even if you have a Museumkaart or Iamsterdam City Card which offer free entry.
A hand-held multimedia tour is available for €5 (adults), €3 (children 13-17) in 11 languages: English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Russian, Chinese Mandarin, Japanese and Korean.
There is also a family guide tailored for children aged 6-12.
Other facilities include a museum café (free WiFi available) and large shop on the ground floor.
On the last Friday of each month (1900 to 2200), the museum hosts Vincent On Friday, a multimedia party event aimed at a younger audience (18-30) with live music, DJs, films, artistic performances all inspired by the impact of Van Gogh’s life. Only a standard entry ticket is required for admission.
With its magnificent collection of paintings, the Van Gogh museum is certainly one of the top things to do in Amsterdam.
Note, the Van Gogh Museum was closed between 13 March and 31 May 2020 due to coronavirus measures. Since reopening on 1 June it remains mandatory to pre-book a ticket and timeslot. Ticket numbers are limited in order to maintain social distancing.
Van Gogh Museum Essential Info
|Opening Times||Daily 0900-1800. Note closes at 1700 in June and September 2020.|
|Admission Prices (2020)||€19 for adults, FREE entry to children 0-17, Museumkaart or Iamsterdam City Card holders. It is obligatory to pre-book a time-slot ticket online. Book your ticket online here to get a time slot|
|Getting There||The Van Gogh Museum is a 10 minute walk from Leidseplein. From Amsterdam Central, trams 2, 12 and 24 stop at the adjacent Rijksmuseum; or take metro line 52 to Vijzelgracht station which is about 5-7 mins walk away; from Amsterdam Zuid, take tram 5; from Amsterdam Sloterdijk take tram 19 to Spiegelgracht stop; from Schiphol airport, bus 397 also stops at the Rijksmuseum.|
Van Gogh Museum, Museumplein 6, Amsterdam
T: +31(0)20 570 5200, vangoghmuseum.nl