Amsterdam Historical Museum - A Great Peek Into Amsterdam History

The Amsterdam Historical Museum (AHM) gives a fascinating insight into Amsterdam history:

How a small medieval town (founded around 1250 AD) could grow into the center of the emerging world economy in the 17th century, and the international and tolerant city that Amsterdam is today.

The history of Amsterdam truely comes alive in this Amsterdam museum.

The museum is in the top 10 of most popular museums in Amsterdam (there are over 50), receiving over 200.000 visitors a year.

What Can You See At The Amsterdam Historical Museum?

Court of the Amsterdam Historical Museum

The museum is located in a beautiful 15th century building, built around a large courtyard. From 1579 on, it was a famous orphanage by the name Burgerweeshuis.

The museum collection is organized along 3 themes: the Young City (medieval period), the Mighty City (the Golden Age) and the Modern City (20th-21st century).

The 17th century gets most attention, as this is the real blossoming period of the Netherlands. The collection consists of paintings, archeological findings, drawings, maquettes and other objects. The museum also has a beautiful porcelain and silver collection.

Practical Details

The Amsterdam Historical Museum is in the middle of the Amsterdam shopping centre and has three visitor entrances: Kalverstraat 92, Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal 357 and Sint Luciƫnsteeg 27.

Amsterdam Historical Museum

It's best reached by tram: take tram 1, 2 and 5 (stop Spui) or tram 4, 9, 14, 16, 24 or 25 (stop Rokin).

Like the rest of the city centre, a car isn't too convenient here, but there's usual (expensive) parking space in the underground parking garage "De Kolk" at the Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal, or the one under the City Hall (Stopera). You can also walk (15-20 minutes) from the Central Station, via the Damrak, Dam and Kalverstraat.

Like other Amsterdam museums, there can be waiting lines, so show up early. Contrary to many other Amsterdam museums, the AHM does not have online ticket sales. There's free access if you have an Iamsterdam Card or Museumkaart. For ticket prices and opening hours, see

The museum has a restaurant and shop, and is reasonably accessible for wheel chairs.

Other Historical Museums In Amsterdam

  • The most visited historical museum in Amsterdam (over 1 million visitors annually) is the Anne Frank House. The Secret Annex of this house was the hiding place of Jewish girl Anne Frank and her family for 2 years, before they were arrested and, all but one, died.
  • The Rembrandt House is quite popular too. It's the former house of the most famous Dutch painter of the Golden Age, Rembrandt van Rijn. The house has been kept in the original state and gives a fascinating insight into the daily life of a well-to-do Amsterdam citizen in the 17th century.
  • The Old Church (Oude Kerk), located in the Red Light District, is Amsterdam's oldest church, built around 1250 AD. Many famous Amsterdammers are buried inside the building, which is beautiful and fascinating.
  • Fortunately, the highly interesting Maritime Museum (Scheepvaartmuseum) is open again to the public after heavy reconstruction work.

Related Pages: