The Rijksmuseum has over 5,000 paintings (including Rembrandt's Night Watch), and an emphasis on the Dutch Golden Age. Its collection spans over 800 years of art history in a beautifully restored building. Located smack-dab in the heart of Amsterdam's Museumplein, the Rijks is an Amsterdam must-see.
The National Museum of the Netherlands, the Rijksmuseum recently underwent a ten-year, €375 million renovation. It's come out looking great - airy, bright and inviting. Plus, it's filled with more paintings and objets d'art than you can possibly absorb in an afternoon's ramble. Still, it's fun to give it a try.
There's a definite emphasis on the Dutch Golden Age - the 17th century period when Rembrandt, Vermeer, and many other artists found fame, and occasionally fortune. The Rijksmuseum collection showcases art from 1200-2000.
The highlight is Rembrandt's Night Watch, also known by its much longer title Militia Company of District II under the Command of Captain Frans Banninck Cocq. Vermeer's The Milkmaid is another famous classic to be viewed here, but there are many other lesser-known, but equally intriguing works of art that provide a window into life in another time.
Another favorite - though underrated section - is the weapons and ship models, with its exotic, ornate and even combat-used weapons.
The Rijksmuseum also offers an excellent multimedia tour app that can be downloaded straight to your smartphone. Check it out on the App Store or Google Play!