Anne Frank House

I am flying to Spain next month with a 6 hour layover inmsterdam. I am big WWI I buff and want to visit the house. Is it worth it? Also researched canal cruises. Will i have time for both? Any other ideas?
Thanks for any advice!!

Posted by Donna
Cleveland, OH
280 posts

Hi Steve, I was in Amsterdam in May and thought the visit to the Anne Frank house was very interesting. Very crowded but the line keeps moving, took about an hour. The cruise took another hour, good (taped) narration. Allow for some travel time between sites but you can do both in 3 to 4 hrs. Hope you have a good time.

Posted by Michael Schneider
New Paltz, NY
6827 posts

Six hours is just enough time to head into the city center for a short visit. But doing both the house and the canal cruise might be pushing it. The Anne Frank House is a twenty minute walk from Centraal Station which is the where the trains from the airport will drop you off. There are long lines to get into the house, to bypass this you can purchase a timed ticket at the official website. There are canal ship docks right at central station, it lasts about 60-90 minutes depending on the operator. Check out this FAQ for all the other details: http://tinyurl.com/24eep4t

Posted by Ken
Vernon, Canada
17728 posts

steve, With six hours, I suspect you'll have time for either Anne Frank House OR the canal cruise, but not both. You'll have to allow for travel time back and forth to the airport, travel time from Amsterdam Central and back and also a "cushion" to allow for unexpected delays. Even with a pre-reserved ticket, it can take awhile to get through Anne Frank House if it's crowded, as the line will move slowly through the small rooms. It may well be possible to visit both locations, but I wouldn't try it. Although it's a reasonably short walk from Amsterdam Central, I'd probably take a Taxi or one of the Trams to save time. Happy travels!

Posted by steve
troy, ny
152 posts

I was hoping to do both. I am going carryon so no need to claim my bag.I am planning on storing it at Schipol. Do I go through customs and immigration at Schipol or when I land in Spain? I am assuming Amsterdam because that is my point of entry into Europe. Sorry for sounding ignorant. Lol

Posted by Rose
NYC
922 posts

Steve, I think you will find that the Anne Frank House is not a place to rush through. It requires quiet thoughtfulness and attention to detail to understand and absorb what really happened there and what it meant. Especially considering the devastating outcome of what happened to that exceptionally beautiful girl who was so full of life and hope, despite her terrifying circumstances.

Posted by Sondra
Murrieta, Ca
87 posts

Anne Frank house was much more interesting than I thought it would be. I almost didn't bother to go and I would have missed some great history. it is worth it!

Posted by steve
troy, ny
152 posts

I appreciate the advice. I really want to do the Anne Frank house. I have read the diary multiple times..seen plays and movies of her story (not ashamed to admit i always cry). So i will do that and just maybe walk around some canals and over bridgss before heading back to Schipol. Is that feasible?

Posted by steve
troy, ny
152 posts

I am reading the reviews on TRIPADVISOR and all say the queue is long. I also want to visit Corrie Ten Boom's house in Haarlem. Another favorite of mine. Has anyone been there? I am up in the air as to what to do. Help please!

Posted by Ken
Vernon, Canada
17728 posts

steve, I'd suggest staying with a visit to Anne Frank House, as travel to Haarlem will add to your travel times. The queues may be long but as I mentioned previously, the crowds may also be moving slowly through the small rooms. As someone else mentioned, a lot of people are reflecting, reading the exhibits, etc. Even so, with 6 hours you should have enough time, and it's well worth a visit. If you're reasonably sure what time you can get there, you could always book a ticket online, but I believe they're issued for a specific time so allow some leeway when booking. What time does your flight arrive? Good luck!

Posted by Andrea
Sacramento, CA
4863 posts

The online tickets for the Anne Frank House allow you to go in during a time slot. An advance ticket allows you to enter a separate entrance. If I remember correctly from doing this several years ago you have to arrive during a 60 minute period. I just checked their website and they refer to a time slot, but don't specify how long that is. Maybe someone who has done this recently can weigh in. You must reserve this well in advance. When I looked at their calendar they are booked up for the next 6 days and have limited times available through the 24th. I've been there twice and was just as moved the second time. However much time you have there will be worth the effort.

Posted by Michael Schneider
New Paltz, NY
6827 posts

I am going carryon so no need to claim my bag.I am planning on storing it at Schipol. Do I go through customs and immigration at Schipol or when I land in Spain? You'll go through immigration/customs at Schipol. You'll see lockers before you reach the immigration check point and after customs. It's very important that you use the lockers after customs in the public area of the terminal. The reason being when you reenter the airport you won't have access the lockers in post immigration area because you'll be in a separate section of the terminal. The lockers only accept credit cards, magnetic strip cards will work. So i will do that and just maybe walk around some canals and over bridgss before heading back to Schipol. Is that feasible? The neighborhood the AF house is in, is very picturesque with lots of canals. Here's a taste: http://goo.gl/maps/QPeSe Do a google maps print out and you can take scenic long-cut through this back to Centraal Station. The popular Pancake Bakery is nearby and a great place for a quick lunch.

Posted by Andre L.
Tilburg, Netherlands
2172 posts

6 hours is a bit too tight in my opinion to visit the Anne Frankhuis, assuming 6 hours is the interval between scheduled landing time and schedule departure time. It is not possible to take a canal cruise... First, lets look at time spent on airport: - 30 min to disembark, clear immigration and exit the arrivals area - 30 min before departure arrival on gate
- 40 min to clear security and find your gate So at the very minimum you'll spend 1h10, which leaves you with 4h50 for the tour itself. This wouldn't include any "cushion". If you are going by train to the Annefrankhuis, you can either take a taxi from the airport there (expensive), or use train + tram.

Posted by Charles
Austin, Texas, USA
307 posts

If it were me I would get an advance timed entry ticket at the Anne Frank house for about 90-120 minutes after my arrival. Any time left over can be spent exploring the canals. Don't do Haarlam. Not worth it given your timeframes.

Posted by Michael Schneider
New Paltz, NY
6827 posts

- 40 min to clear security and find your gate For most flights at Schipol security is done at the gate instead of a centralized area. So there's 40 minutes freed-up. You've go plenty of time to visit the AF House.

Posted by Ed
Pensacola
7957 posts

Two guys talking about two sides to the airport? On the non-Schengen side there's no control between piers and there's security at every gate.

Posted by Michael Schneider
New Paltz, NY
6827 posts

Each pier has its own passport control. Wrong. I use the airport often as well. The terminal is divided in half. On one side of the terminal all gates go to Schengen destinations, the other half non-Schengen. There is one single passport control between the two halves. The individual piers don't have their own immigration checks.

Posted by steve
troy, ny
152 posts

Thanks everyone for the advice. Especially about the airport.thanks michael..ed and andre for that input. Concerning the lockers: i don't have a credit card. Will a debit card work?

Posted by Ken
Vernon, Canada
17728 posts

steve, I doubt that a debit card will work, but it may. If you were using a credit card, it would likely have to be a "Chip & PIN" type as that seems to be the "standard" in the Netherlands. I found that even at the staffed ticket windows at Amsterdam Central, they would ONLY accept C&P cards. I'd suggest having some cash handy. One other note about the airport. It's a single terminal airport so it's very large, and lots of walking will probably be involved. Be sure to allow enough time to get to your departure gate when you return from Anne Frank House. I've also noticed that they often have security right at the gate. You'll go through the Scanners and pat-down, and then directly onto the plane. Cheers!

Posted by steve
troy, ny
152 posts

Thanks Ken.
But how would i pay cash if the lockers are credit card inly? I heard there was a room. You could leave your bag at and pay cash.

Posted by Dianne
Vulcan, AB, Canada
1 posts

I visited the Anne Frank House three years ago and it was one of the memorable experiences in my life. I would like to suggest one thing - read up about Anne and her experiences in the annex before you go. Your visit will mean so much more to you. Dianne

Posted by Michael Schneider
New Paltz, NY
6827 posts

The lockers at Schipol airport do accept magnetic strip cards. If your debit card has the Visa or Mastercard symbol on it, it will work for the lockers. Same deal with the lockers at Centraal Station, magnetic strip cards are accepted. Magnetic strip cards are not accepted at the ticket windows or machines for train tickets, but for lockers they will work.

Posted by Ken
Vernon, Canada
17728 posts

steve, It would be great if you could post a Trip Report when you get back, with the details on using debit cards at Schiipol (or elsewhere). The information might be helpful for others in future.

Posted by Stay-ce
Northern California
141 posts

I was just there about a week ago. The line is crazy long. Do not even attempt to go without a reservation. With your reservation you use a separate door that you ring a bell for. They then buzz you in. You then get into a long congo line inside that moves very slowly through the museum. At the end of the museum there are some fun interactive exhibits. My girls loved it and thought it was the greatest thing we did in Amsterdam. My son hated the line and enjoyed just walking around the canals more. He is a huge WWII buff also but he didn't read her book. So it really didn't have the meaning that it did for my girls that did read the book. If you take a tram you have to get off at Dam Square and walk 5-7 minutes. The tram drivers sell the tickets on board so don't waste time trying to buy it beforehand.

Posted by Michael Schneider
New Paltz, NY
6827 posts

If you take a tram you have to get off at Dam Square and walk 5-7 minutes. The tram drivers sell the tickets on board so don't waste time trying to buy it beforehand. Not so, trams 13 & 17 will take you from Centraal Station to the Westermarkt stop which is in front of the the church of the same name, from there it's only a two minute walk to the AF house.