on October 1, 2009
The Rijksmuseum is best known for its collection of Dutch paintings from the 17th century, or the Dutch Golden Age, as it is often described in the Netherlands. But the museum has a wider focus which includes crafts and history. The collection includes substantial Asian artworks as well.A major renovation is being undertaken but the museum is still open for visits and is well worth the time. The huge four story castle like structure is unmistakable when you are near the open square of the Museumplein.We bought tickets online which saved us another long queue. The website can be found at: www.rijksmuseum.nl/?lang=en. Tickets for adults is € 11and for those 18 and under, admission is free. When you go to the museum with your printed tickets, ignore the sign which says "Fast Lane" because it leads to an area under renovation.The museum offers audio tours and guided tours but it is very easy to tour yourself around as each art object has an explanatory text in English and Dutch.The stars of the collection are the paintings by Dutch artists Jacob van Ruysdael, Frans Hals, Johannes Vermeer, Rembrandt and Rembrandt’s pupils. Rembrandt’s painting known as The Night Watch is a national treasure and one of those works which will never be loaned out. You need to visit the Rijksmuseum to see it. No photography is allowed. There are a couple of museum shops with postcards, books and other souvenir items. The Rijksmuseum also shares a gift shop with the Van Gogh Museum in the Museumplein area between the buildings and where you will also find the IAMsterdam sculpture. The shops do not all have the same items so if you see something you want in one, buy it, because it may not be sold in the other shops.
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