Day 14 of our Eurail trip brought us back to the city of Amsterdam. Unfortunately, we have to say that we weren’t that impressed with the city itself. It might have been because Amsterdam Central train station was the most confusing train station to navigate. In addition the luggage lockers were ridiculously expensive (over 20 Euros to store our bags for the day). After enjoying the green spaces of Bruges the city just seemed dirty and crowded. The canals were even more full of floating garbage than those in Venice, and we couldn’t get used to the bicycles that went whizzing by constantly. Trying to navigate car traffic with three kids is one thing, but having to worry about bikes as well is really difficult.
Now that we got the negatives out of the way, we have to say that we did have our best museum experience ever in the city. Last month when the kids started studying World War 2 we came across The Verzets Museum (the Dutch Resistance Museum). The museum website had a very informative Junior section that described what it was like for 4 different children when the Nazis invaded The Netherlands. The Younger Fives were immediately hooked by the narratives of these children, and we decided that visiting the Dutch Resistance Museum Junior section would be a priority.
We could never have dreamed what an amazing experience this would turn out to be. The Resistance Museum Junior is a masterfully put together exhibit from start to finish. The five of us were captivated from the moment we entered the doors through their very cool “time machine”, until we finally had to force ourselves to leave so that we wouldn’t miss our next train. High Five being only four years old was able to participate fully in every display thanks to the easy to use audio guides, and touch screen computers.
The museum did a wonderful job putting together multi-faceted displays. The visual, audio, written, and interactive aspects of the Junior Museum made learning about what life was like in The Netherlands during World War 2 both captivating and understandable. It also did a really great job of presenting life during the war from multiple angles. We were introduced to children from the entire spectrum of life at the time of the Nazi invasion, which really helped present a complete picture of how the war affected all children no matter what side they were on.
It is not often that you find a museum that will engage every member of your family, and we really feel fortunate that we were able to visit. We encourage anyone heading to Amsterdam to make time for the Resistance Museum Junior, no matter your age.