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  • Juan Ignacio

Some lesser-known museums

There is a great amount of good museums in Amsterdam, but you can't miss these two from neighboring cities.

It’s hard to get bored in the Netherlands, there are a lot of things to do, from biking and partying, to other more seasonal activities such as ice skating, but among them, one of the most interesting is visiting their museums. As you may already know, Amsterdam has some of the most impressive museums in the world, such as the Rijksmuseum, the Anne Frank House and the Van Gogh museum, and that is why I don’t want to talk about them, but about others that I have discovered and that aren’t as well known.

To be honest, the first time that I heard about Arnhem was from a friend of mine, Álex, who came to visit me. He is a big history fan, particularly the World War II, and he told me that a terrible battle had taken place there and that there is a museum about it.

At first glance, it is not a big one. It was once an office-building for the nazi occupation troops in the city, so it has several floors full of weapons, uniforms, vehicles and documents from those days, and a big basement, which might be the most interesting part of it. In it you can find a representation of a street corner during the war, with ambient noises and everything. It made you feel as if you were actually in the battlefield, wanting to shout: “take cover!”

One of those vehicles

Kasteel de Haar

The city of Utrecht is definitely a must in the Netherlands, so my girlfriend, Coral, and I decided to visit it when she came for my birthday. Its cathedral is quite beautiful (unless they are doing repair work and it’s fully covered with scaffolding), and the streets are charming, but, in my opinion, they can’t compete with the castle.

It is located outside the city, surrounded by an elegant garden, which unfortunately we didn’t visit since the weather wasn’t on our side -cold and rain are not a good combination- so it will have to wait until spring or summer. Although from the outside it is impressive, what is inside leaves you breathless. The windows in the main hall, that I show you in the photo, are wonderful, and despite its medieval style the castle was rebuilt and updated to modern standards. Off the record, the guards are very friendly, eager to explain all the trivia about the site.

The main hall.

So, if you have some time and the will to do it, both places are a lovely choice to spend an afternoon traveling in time and disconnecting from reality, particularly when that is full of exams and essays.

Good luck with your assignments!

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