Top choice in Amsterdam

The Concert Hall was built in 1888 by AL van Gendt, who managed to engineer its near-perfect acoustics. Bernard Haitink, former conductor of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, remarked that the world-famous hall was the orchestra's best instrument. Free half-hour concerts take place Wednesdays at 12.30pm from September to June; arrive early. Try the Last Minute Ticket Shop ( for half-price seats to selected performances.

Those aged 29 or younger (ID required) can queue at the box office for €16 'Sprint' tickets one hour prior to shows. Guided tours in English (€11, 75 minutes) show that, in spite of Van Gendt's limited musical knowledge, he gave the two-tiered Grote Zaal (Main Hall) acoustics that are the envy of sound designers worldwide, along with a baroque trim, panels inscribed with the names of classical composers, a massive pipe organ and a grand staircase via which conductors and soloists descend to the stage.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Amsterdam attractions

1. Van Gogh Museum Library

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The Van Gogh Museum's library has a wealth of reference material – some 35,000 books and articles – for serious study.

2. Stedelijk Museum

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3. Van Gogh Museum

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4. Museumplein

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5. Moco Museum

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6. House of Bols


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8. Rijksmuseum

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