Van Loon Museum

If you are curious about how Dutch nobility lived in centuries past you may visit the Van Loon Museum on the Keizersgracht at number 672.

The double-sized canal house was constructed in 1672. The first person to live here was the painter Ferdinand Bol, one of Rembandt’s most famous pupils.

In the sixteenth century the Van Loon’s moved to Amsterdam from the south of Holland to flee the Spanish occupation and became respected members of Amsterdam society. Several Van Loons are former mayors (burgemeesters) of Amsterdam, and the last resident was Thora van Loon – Egidius. She was Dame du… Continue reading

Randy Roy’s Red Light Walking Tour Amsterdam

This tour was highly recommended in BOOM magazine. Randy is a pretty cool guy! This tour focused on the humorous and contemporary stories of the red light district. He kept us entertained by showing us where Quentin Tarantino wrote Pulp Fiction. Eminem and Mike Tyson’s favorite coffeshop. We even saw the club with the darkroom floor that Jean Paul Gaultier passed out on (and woke up stuck to)!
We saw a lot of window prostitutes and learned about X-rated bookshops, live sex shows, magic mushrooms and smart shops. Warning: there was also some Amsterdam history on the tour.We had a… Continue reading

Art and Culture in the Jordaan

The Jordaan was build at the large expansion of Amsterdam in early 17th century, as a district for the working class and emigrants. The population increase during the next centuries was enormously, caused by the stream political refugees like protestant Fleming, Spanish and Portuguese Jews and French Huguenots who mainly settled in the Jordaan. It was a poor district with small houses and slums, every little room stuffed with families and lots of children. The entire area was one ghetto with open sewers, canals served for both transport and sewer, and no running water. Around 1900 there lived about 80… Continue reading

Jewish Historical Museum

The Jewish Historical Museum was established 70 years ago, and from 1932 till 1987 it was housed in the medieval Weigh House, in the Nieuwmarkt. In 1987, the museum moved to the restored complex of synagogues at Jonas Daniël Meijerplein, just off the Waterlooplein.

Originally opemed as a single room, part of the Amsterdam Historical Museum, it has grown over the years despite the efforts of the Nazis.

When Germany invaded the Netherlands in May 1940, the Jewish Historical Museum closed its doors and tried to save the collection. Objects on loan were returned to their owners and the museum… Continue reading

Stadsarchief Amsterdam

Stadsarchief Amsterdam is on the Amsteldijk upriver from the Carre theater, on the other side of the Amstel River.

This is where the official archives of the City of Amsterdam reside, and there are exhibits open to the public, with interpretations in Dutch, of course.

Stadsarchief Amsterdam is on the Amsteldijk at number 67, 1074 HZ Amsterdam.

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