We began the day with a visit to the Rijksmuseum. The photo above is a summer photo by Wikipedia, but the museum is now in the process of renovation which will not be completed until 2013.
However the museum still has a great exhibition, called The Masterpieces. As you walk into the first room you are faced with the masterpiece of Bartholomeus Vander Helst, called the Militia Banquet, celebrating the Treaty of Munster in 1648. It is about 7.5 feet high and 18 feet wide.(No, this is not the Nightwatch.)
Elizabeth enjoying some Delft pottery.
A 17th century dollhouse.
Of course we saw many paintings by Rembrandt, including this self-portrait.
Another Rembrandt, Jeremiah Lamenting the Destruction of Jerusalem.
Frans Hals, Portrait of a Young Couple.
The Jolly Drinker by Frans Hals.
A painting, The old town hall of Amsterdam by Pieter Jansz. Saenredam.
Another Saenredam, the St. Bavo Church in Haarlem.
Then two of our favorites by Johannes Vermeer, the first The Little Street..
and the second, The Milkmaid.
Finally we get to see The Nightwatch by Rembrandt. It is an impressive 11 feet, 10 inches by 14 feet, 4 inches.
Next we went to the Van Gogh Museum, where we were not allowed to take photos, so these photos come from the Wikipedia article here. This museum has the largest Van Gogh collection in the world, comprised of 200 of his paintings, 400 drawings, and 700 letters.
Of course it was much busier than this photo implies. It was very busy inside and the lines waiting to get in were 2 blocks long, but we had the a museum pass which allowed us to walk right in.
A few of his works at the Van Gogh Museum.
After a long time in these museums, it was time for some food. We chose to have Dutch pannekoeken in a nearby restaurant. These are large, thin pancakes with many choices for fillings.
For dessert we shared a plate of poffertjes, which are a traditional Dutch batter treat. Resembling small, fluffy pancakes, they are made with yeast and buckwheat flour. Typically, poffertjes are served with powdered sugar and butter.
We walked back to our apartment through Kalverstraat, one of the big shopping areas in Amsterdam.
Today is our last day in Amsterdam and we had to get ready for an early train to Hamburg to begin our Elbe River Cruise .