Trip to Amsterdam's Museums Experience Van Gogh

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With over 50 museums, there's always something to do in Amsterdam on a rainy day. On a more serious note, if you're planning a cultural trip to Amsterdam, you are headed to the right place; the city is packed with museums devoted to everything from the best in Dutch painting to the history of hash. However, no trip to Amsterdam is complete without visiting the following.

Cultural trips to Amsterdam : Top 5 museums

Rijksmuseum

If you're yearning to soak in the work of the Old Dutch masters, head to the Rijksmuseum (Stadhouderskade 42, Museumplein), which offers the best collection of paintings by artists Hals, Rembrandt, Steen and Vermeer. The museum is huge (over 150 rooms) and can take a full day to explore. Make sure you at least glimpse Rembrandt's The Night Watch and Vermeer's The Kitchen Maid. The museum also has a terrific collection of Asian art, prints and drawings. Part of the Rijksmuseum will be closed until 2008 for renovation.

Van Gogh Museum

No trip to Amsterdam would be complete without visiting The Van Gogh Museum (Paulus Potterstraat 7, Museumplein.) It offers the largest collection of the artist's work in the world, with over 200 paintings including The Yellow House, Sunflowers and The Bedroom. Van Gogh's work is organised chronologically by the five influencing phases of his life; the darkness of the Netherlands and Paris, the lightness of Arles and Saint Remy and his last paintings from Auvers sur Oise.

Stedelijk Museum

The Stedelijk Museum (Oosterdokskade 5, Museumplein) is a startling museum of modern art that takes visitors through 150 years of contemporary art beginning with Seurat and Monet. The collection progresses through cubism with Picasso and colour with Chagall before entering the 1950s and 60s with Jackson Pollock and Andy Warhol and finishing off with contemporary pieces by De Kooning and Newman.

Other

If you're not into the art scene, Amsterdam has a number of museums dedicated to more unusual subject matter. The Tattoo Museum is devoted to the history of the art of tattooing. You'll learn all about the historical and cultural significance attributed to tattoos as you browse exhibits that display ancient tools from Asia and view images of traditional Maori designs. The Seksmuseum near Dam Square offers a comprehensive collection of sexual material (under 17 not allowed) and is a somewhat more formal version of what is displayed beneath the red lights of Amsterdam's most infamous district.

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