Get an alternative take on history at the Torture Museum, Amsterdam

©Claire Bissell/Lonely Planet

Torture Museum

Medieval Centre & Red Light District

It's dilapidated and so dimly lit inside that you can barely read the placards, but fans of kitsch and oddball lore will enjoy learning about devices such as the Flute of Shame for bad musicians (the finger screws tighten), the Neck Violin for quarrelling women (a shackle locked the two face to face), branding tongs, skull crackers, a guillotine and the Iron Maiden of Nuremberg (use your imagination).

The museum displays each torture tool and describes (in multiple languages) how it works. Graphic engravings show the instruments in action.

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