Buy online tickets for fast line admission to avoid waiting queues when visiting the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.
The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam has the largest collection worldwide of artworks and letters by the Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh. This art gallery claims to be the most-visited museum in The Netherlands and is clearly a must-see site for many visitors to Holland. Queues are the norm, even on quiet days, so do buy timed tickets online before arriving at the museum. Even visitors qualifying for free (e.g. museum card) or discount tickets should get timed tickets to avoid having to wait. Tickets are sold every day at the Van Gogh Museum itself too but the waits can be endless and of unpredictable length.
The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam
The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam is home to around 200 paintings, 400 drawings and 700 letters by the Dutch artist Vincent can Gogh. The museum also has a large collection of works by Van Gogh’s contemporaries and works that influenced his own style, including his collection of Japanese prints.
The artworks on display change often with the permanent collection frequently enhanced by loaned works as well as temporary exhibitions. The temporary exhibitions are usually of exceptional quality and worth addition charges.
A new visitors entrance opened in 2014 between the main Rietveld Building and the oval Kurokawa Wing, which is usually used for temporary displays. This new building improves the visitors experience, and allow for waiting in the park rather than the street, but does nothing to cut down on waiting times – it is the number of visitors inside the building that largely determines whether more people are allowed into museum at any given time.
Buying Tickets for the Van Gogh Museum
Admission tickets for the Van Gogh Museum is currently €17 (free for children under 18, if not part of a school group) – no student or other age-related discounts are offered. Ticket prices may be higher with some temporary exhibitions. The Dutch Museum Card (Museumkaart) is accepted (but getting a free e-ticket is sensible).
Online e-tickets are the only sane way to visit the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam – buy mobile phone time-slot tickets from Tiqets or from the museum shop. Even with an e-ticket in hand, some queuing may be required on busy days.
Although it is not essential, children and bearers of the Museumkaart or other discount vouchers, may also obtain a timed e-ticket for free (or with discount depending on the offer) online. This will place such visitors in the same priority direct admission line as other e-ticket holders.
Admission to the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam
Queuing is the norm at the Van Gogh Museum. Even bearers of timed e-tickets should expect to wait on busy days, as only a limited number of visitors are allowed to enter the building at any given time. The upside is that the galleries do not get too uncomfortably crowded but note that the queues are waiting in open weather – more likely wind and rain than gentle sunshine.
Admission to the Van Gogh Museum is done in the following order:
- Bearers of e-tickets get priority admission for around the first half hour of the time period. Even then, e-ticket holders have to wait if the museum is too full, which makes the 9 am admission generally a good idea.
- Museumkaart holders and e-ticket holders arriving later than the first half hour of the time on the ticket.
- Other free and discounted ticket passes (this is the line for most fast-lane access or skip-the-line tickets – e-tickets are much better).
- All other tickets and visitors without tickets. (Think this one over twice, mobile phone time-slot tickets may even be available online on the actual day.)
It thus makes little sense buying tickets in advance from any tourism operators other than the Van Gogh Museum (or its partner Tiqets), unless combined with other tours or admissions that could give savings overall, see Get Your Guide for some ideas. Bearers of the Museumkaart and some other passes will also do better by getting a time-specific e-ticket for free (or at the applicable discount) from the museum website. There is no additional charge for getting an e-ticket, other than having to print it out or displaying it on a mobile phone or tablet.
The number of e-tickets sold for any timed period is less than the number of visitors allowed into the museum. Tickets are therefor always on sale at the museum but actual admission depends on the length of the queue. The final tickets are sold around half an hour before the museum closes and anyone still in the queue after that is out of luck.
E-tickets are available as far as four months in advance but, if still available, can be booked even on the day of the visit.
Opening Hours of the Van Gogh Museum Amsterdam
The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam is open daily at a minimum from 9 am to 5 pm (10 pm on Fridays). During the high season (usually Easter to early November), the Van Gogh Museum closes at 6 pm (10 pm on Friday). During the summer holidays from mid-July to early September, the Van Gogh Museum is open from 9 am to 7 pm, closing at 9 pm on Saturday and 10 pm on Friday. Last tickets are sold around half an hour before closing time.
On Friday nights from 7 pm, the museum is turned into a semi night club with cocktails and loud DJ music but also some free guided tours. This experience is not everyone’s idea of Van Gogh, so avoid the museum, or especially visit, on Friday nights.
The Van Gogh Museum is at the heart of Amsterdam’s Museum District – the Stedelijk Museum (modern art) and Rijksmuseum are in the immediate vicinity, as are Vondel Park, the Zuiderbad swimming pool, and the Heineken Experience.