The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam (which you can visit for free with a City Card) pulls out all the stops with their summer vacation program aimed at kids. A fascinating family tour will introduce you to the men of the famous Night Watch, teach you about the long voyages undertaken by the Dutch East India Company, and take in highlights from the museum’s vast collection. Did we mention that you’ll be armed with pencil, paper, clay and a cannon? Or that a fun-filled theatrical tour will transport you back to the 18th century?
Learn all about the Dutch Golden Age as part of the Drawing School classes, which have been described as the ‘coolest history lesson ever!’ by keen kids.Drawing classes inspired by Rembrandt are on offer in the Picnic room. Art teachers will be on hand to offer guidance on weekends, public holidays and during school holidays. You’ll also learn about how 17th-century painters worked, from stretching canvases to preparing panels, and mixing raw materials to applying paints with brushs and palette knives.
The whole family can enjoy a special digital game that sets you on a course through the museum to solve eight fascinating Rijksmuseum mysteries. A surprise awaits for those who can solve them all.
Curious? Check out the Rijksmuseum’s programme (in Dutch).
Go on a treasure hunt through Rembrandt’s former home
Investigate Rembrandt’s former home by taking the kids on a free treasure hunt. You’ll get to discover the Rembrandt House Museum (which is also free for City Card holders) and learn all about his life and work as you wander the very rooms he lived and worked in. Did you know he was a keen collector? You’re sure to be amazed by some of the objects he collected, including stuff animals from his own childhood.
Learn about Young Rembrandt in the master’s home town, Leiden
Rembrandt was born in Leiden and spent his formative years there before moving to Amsterdam. Duck into Langebrug 89, a 17th-century house where Rembrandt honed his craft, learning to paint, draw and etch. Get a glimpse into his life via a short video that introduces you to the artist and key figures in his life. Follow in the young master’s footsteps on a specially designed walking route that takes you to his place of birth and other places he frequented. The city walk is for children (8 to 12 years) and presents a historical perspective on the artist and the city. A great deal has changed in 400 years yet there are spots in the city that looks almost exactly now as they did then.
Explore the Mauritshuis in The Hague
The Maurtishuis has an extensive range of activities for kids all year long. As part of Rembrandt festivities, the last Sunday of every month is family day, with Rembrandt-inspired adventures for the little ones, and also includes other non-Rembrandt themes. It is a great way for the kids to learn all about art.
Get to know Rembrandt more with Hello Rembrandt! an interactive exhibition beginning 20 July aimed at kids 3-11 years. The young ones will use of all their senses as they play games and complete fun assignments that will teach them about this famous Dutch painter. Discover who Rembrandt was, how he painted and why he is so well-regarded around the world. During the summer holidays, from 20 July to 15 September, you can pick up a brush and get to work with paint just as a 17th-century artist may have done.
Don’t forget to pick up the free Rembrandt Puzzle at the service counter, a fun search task for kids to undertake on their visit. Or purchase a copy of Maurits Mouse and Rembrandt, a new children’s book featuring fabulous illustrations. A young Rembrandt meets Maurits Mouse and the two new friends set off on an adventure. It’s in Dutch, but the gorgeous images are for everybody to enjoy.
Check out our Rembrandt page for the full list of exhibitions dedicated to the Dutch painter.