on January 11, 2011
You cannot visit Amsterdam without visiting at least one museum and in my opinion the best one is definately the Dutch national museum which is the rijksmuseum. Not only does it house a fantastic collection of paintings from the Dutch masters it also has so many other fantastic exhibits that you should try and get there early to see as much as you possibly can. The museum is housed in an impressive building which takes parts from both Gothic and Renaissance styles but was only built in 1885 and for me at least I find it to be one of the most beautiful buildings in Amsterdam. The museum contains all the importan Dutch masters including Johannes Vermeer, Jan Steen, Jacob van Ruysdael and of course the big draw Rembrandt. The most famous painting in the collection and conversley the busiest and most difficult to view is The Night Watch. It was actually so crowded that it was next to impossible to be able to get a proper look at this amazing painting. The rest of the museum is also busy but it is possible to view some of the paintings in relative peace and quiet due to it's size. The collection of the Dutch masters is so stunning and it was amazing to see some paintings that I have only ever seen in books before. After the golden age paintings the next best thing in the museum is definately the Asian collection they have. I have always had a fascination with Asian art and the Rijksmuseum has a wonderful collection and I could have easily spent the whole day just perusing this collection. The collection of porcelain is particulary interesting and I was impressed with both the space the objects were displayed in and the sheer beauty of the objects on display. The Rijksmuseum is an absolute must see in Amsterdam and obviously a lot of other people agree with me as it is the most visited museum in The Netherlands. The crowds of people do take away slightly from the displays as the most popular were so busy it was difficult to see anything but there are so many other works tht may not be as famous but are just as beautiful where the crowds are thinner. Finding the museum is pretty easy as you can just follow the steady stream of tourists heading towards it or you can take advantage of the good tram links. It is located in an area known as museumplein as it is also the location of some other popular museums including the Van Gogh museum and the Diamond museum.
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