Amsterdam is one of our favourite destinations to visit on European river cruises. A starting point for many of our cruises along the magnificent River Rhine, Amsterdam is a delight for the senses and a city which can really get you thinking. There are so many fantastic museums in Amsterdam that it would be impossible to visit them all in one trip, so here are four of our top suggestions.
1. Van Gogh Museum
No trip to Amsterdam would be complete without heading to the museum that houses some of the greatest works by the Dutch artist. The museum is being renovated for a 2013 reopening to better cope with the huge volumes of people who come to see such famous works as ‘Sunflowers’, ‘Bedroom in Arles’ and ‘Almond Blossoms’ every year.
2. Anne Frank House
Another museum which is a must for visitors, Anne Frank House is a reminder of the trials of war on the level of family and the individual. The building on the Prinsengracht canal was the Frank family's real refuge and their actual hiding place has been preserved for people to come and reflect on the issues of discrimination and persecution.
3. Kattenkabinet (Cat Cabinet)
Amsterdam is packed full of all kinds of museum, a number of which seem very specialist but are incredibly fun to explore. Kattenkabinet is one of these examples, a canal house which is dedicated to tracing the role of cats in art and culture throughout history. Described by visitors as an "unexpected treat", Kattenkabinet is packed full of feline posters, paintings, sculptures and other objects, as well as the odd real cat or two.
4. House of Bols
A fun museum for people who want to reach a higher level of understanding about alcohol, the House of Bols Cocktail & Genever Experience allows people to discover more about Lucas Bols, founder of the world's oldest brand of distilled spirit in 1575. It’s an interactive museum, so there will be plenty of opportunities to learn bar tricks and taste delicious cocktails.
Image credit: choking sun (flickr.com)