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Museum of the Canals

Certificate of Excellence
Canal Ring (Grachtengordel)
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Address: Herengracht 386, 1016 CJ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Phone Number:
+31 20 421 1656
10:00 - 17:00
Closed now
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Sun - Sat 10:00 - 17:00
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour

Museum Het Grachtenhuis (The Canal House) is the natural starting point for...

Museum Het Grachtenhuis (The Canal House) is the natural starting point for visitors to Amsterdam. It is located in one of the most beautiful canalside houses. Het Grachtenhuis introduces visitors to one of the best city development projects in the world: the 17th-century canals of Amsterdam. During your visit to the multimedia, interactive exhibition, you will travel in 40 minutes through 400 years of history.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 434 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 165
  • 74
    Very good
  • 23
  • 10
  • 4
Interesting, Educational and Easy to Understand

We were interested in understanding the infrastructure of Amsterdam, how the city came to be built with so many canals. This museum delivers the info in a very succinct and... read more

Reviewed 18 February 2017
Angus, Canada
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434 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 276: English reviews
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 February 2017

Het Grachtenhuis, or Canal House museum is very unique in that it is dedicated to the history of the actual canals in the city. Through modern, interactive exhibits you learn how the the canals were built and how they grew and changed over time to meet the needs and demands of Amsterdam. Films, slide shows, 3D photos and holograms, models,... More 

Thank Jerry-AMS_Calling
Angus, Canada
Level Contributor
44 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 February 2017

We were interested in understanding the infrastructure of Amsterdam, how the city came to be built with so many canals. This museum delivers the info in a very succinct and understandable way. It gave us a great overview of the history of the city and how it was built. The delivery is done in a few different methods making it... More 

Thank happyinutopia
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 February 2017 via mobile

We stumbled on this while looking for the Van Loon. This was particularly good for children as it showed the history of Amsterdam and it's houses in an interesting way. We all loved the room with the model of the house. This gave an insight into both old and modern Amsterdam. Around the walls were spy holes to look at... More 

Thank Emma E
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
17 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 February 2017

This place is a gem, and I highly recommend you go. Set in a historic, well appointed canal house, this museum successfully tells the story of the urban planning and construction of Amsterdam's canal neighborhoods. The museum leverages perhaps the finest use of audio-visual presentation I have ever seen in a historical museum. The 40 minute presentation, during which you... More 

Thank Traveldudesfriend
White Plains, New York
Level Contributor
90 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 February 2017 via mobile

You can skip this and not miss anything. This is a tourist trap and an attempt to use AV and models as a masquerade for education. The Amsterdam museum tells you more about the city than anything you'll find here. I'm not usually so harsh, but this may be the only place I've visited here (over several trips) and felt... More 

Thank Norman_Luxury_Yacht
Adelaide, Australia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 February 2017

I stumbled on this place by chance and I'm so glad! The story of the Amsterdam canals is told as you make your way from room to room, with charming and interesting presentation. I loved the room with a sandy floor, to demonstrate the difficulties of building on a sandy seabed, and especially the room with the big 'doll house'... More 

Thank Marie-LouiseDS
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
123 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 148 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 February 2017

Het Grachtenhuis is a small museum about the building of the outer ring of canals in the 17th century. It is a well-illustrated display with models, video and audio dramatizations. It is appropriately housed in a canal house along one of the very canals being described.

Thank artslover
Brynmawr, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
43 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 January 2017

if you visit amsterdam then you need to give this place a visit. truly is one of a kind place in europe. many bars, coffee shops and you know will be found in this area. really is a cool place to hangout and watch the hundreds of tourist that flock to this area day and night.

Thank adrian d
Berkeley, California
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 January 2017 via mobile

I am a tour guide in Amsterdam, and so have been to lots of museums, this might be my favorite. If you're only going to one museum.....there might be better options for you, but if you have a little time to spare, I can't recommend this place highly enough. Not an art museum, or even a true museum by many... More 

Thank Jesse C
Level Contributor
81 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 December 2016 via mobile

Very well done bringing the history of the development of the city and canals alive. I love the effective yet simple design of the exhibits that guide you through the building of this amazing city of canals. I would have loved to learn more about how the canals are maintained - the flushing and cleaning. Maybe a bit on the... More 

Thank CaptRandall

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Staying in Canal Ring (Grachtengordel)

Neighbourhood Profile
Canal Ring (Grachtengordel)
This UNESCO World Heritage Site is as historically significant as it is perennially popular. Whether you’re a history buff, architecture enthusiast, shutterbug, or fashionista, odds are you’ll find the Amsterdam you're looking for while roaming around the Grachtengordel (Canal Ring). A brilliant place to get lost in a moody meander and a key component to any sightseeing trip to Amsterdam, this area's major draws include the Anne Frank House, the Bloemenmarkt floating flower market, an enviable assortment of independent boutiques along De Negen Straatjes, and of course all of Grachtengordel’s lovely canals and bridges.
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