The houseboat museum

A short walk from the Anne Frank Huis on Princengracht floats the Amsterdam house boat museum. The museum aims to show people what it is like to live on a traditional house boat as well as the history of house boats in Amsterdam. Something that strikes you when walking around the city is the amount of house boats on almost every canal. Some are quite small canal boats, but others are practically palatial two story floating homes. It was nice to have the opportunity to see the inside of one.

The living room on board

Inside was a small kitchen, with space going through to a surprisingly large living room with a few chairs and sofas. Behind the living room was the bedroom, well sleeping space – this was where you could really see how cramped certain parts of living on a boat could be.  There was very little headroom but it did look like it could be comfortable for a nights sleep.

The cramped but cozy looking bedroom

Along with some complete rooms there were some displays about the history of the boat – a 1914 barge which was converted into a house boat after the war as a cheap way to help with a housing shortage. These days house boats are far from cheap, inside the boat there was a board advertising houseboats for sale with prices going up to 500,000 euros.

Although it isn’t the biggest museum, it only costs 4.50 to take a look around and gives you a great insight into one of the more iconic features of the city, so is well worth taking an hour to take a look and grab a coffee on board.

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