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5 Unique Museums in Amsterdam

Less obvious avenues for city culture, history, and art

An I Amsterdam City Card includes public transportation, admission to many museums, and city discounts for 1-3 days.
There’s no denying that the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, and the Anne Frank House are some of Amsterdam’s most popular and worthwhile cultural attractions. But after paying your respects to the giants, these five off-the-beaten-path museums should be next on your list.

The Amsterdam Museum: Dedicated to the past, present, and future of the Dutch capital, this museum tells the story of life in the city from 1275 to World War II and beyond. Presented in amazing detail, exhibits at the museum include an aerial map from the Middle Ages, anatomy studies by Rembrandt, and other pieces of the city’s history. Special exhibits and movies are also offered for more context and illumination.

Foam Photography Museum: Three canal houses make up the home of this photography museum, where works range from classic pieces to innovative examples of the medium. Some of the biggest names in photography have been exhibited here in recent years, such as Diane Arbus, Helen Levitt, and Anton Corbijn.

EYE Filmmuseum: Opened in 2012, the EYE is a cutting-edge space showcasing the history of cinema with temporary exhibitions of memorabilia, art, and other items. In addition, digital booths at the museum offer the chance for visitors to watch classic movies, and new independent releases are also frequently screened. A free exhibit in the basement is a permanent feature of the space, while past exhibitions have included showcases of Fellini, Stanley Kubrick, and other renowned works and figures.

Museum Our Lord in the Attic: Truly a hidden gem of Amsterdam, this museum is located in a private home from the 1660s, where the upper floor harbors a secret church from the 17th century. Used by Dutch Catholics at a time when they were forbidden from worshipping in public, the hidden church and home below have been lovingly preserved and today welcome visitors. Called “Our Sweet Lord in the Attic,” the church also has an altarpiece with a painting by 18th-century artist Jacob de Wit.

Cobra Museum of Modern Art: The avant-garde Cobra movement was an experimental postwar art trend practiced by international artists. Key works from the revolutionary movement can be viewed at this interesting and exotic museum, as well as temporary exhibitions of modern art.

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