De Oude Kerk: Amsterdam’s Historic Old Church

A Stone Church drags the attention in the Red Light District: Visit De Oude Kerk!

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Located in the vibrant heart of Amsterdam, amidst the enchanting streets of the renowned Red Light District, you will find the extraordinary De Oude Kerk, affectionately known as the Old Church. This magnificent landmark is a testament to the city’s captivating history, mesmerizing visitors with its timeless architecture, tranquil atmosphere, and profound cultural significance. Join us on a captivating journey as we delve into the captivating heritage and noteworthy features of De Oude Kerk, providing an unforgettable window into Amsterdam’s storied past.

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All you need to know before visiting the oldest church in Amsterdam

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  • De Oude Kerk is the oldest church and absolutely an amazing place to visit.
  • Located in the center of the Red Light District, the Oude Kerk tour takes no more than an hour, more or less 45 minutes, but is well worth it for the beauty inside, the historical importance, and the incredible restoration of the place since the 13th century.
  • The Oude Kerk ticket can be purchased as a single ticket online and you must choose a time slot.
  • The Oude Kerk ticket is also included in the I Amsterdam Card. For I Amsterdam Card holders there is no need to reserve a time window, just present your valid City Card.

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Check out how to use the I Amsterdam Card to save up to 50% on your trip

What is De Oude Kerk?

De Oude Kerk, meaning “The Old Church” in English, is the city’s oldest building and the oldest catholic church in Amsterdam. The original Church was built in the 13th century, it holds immense historical and cultural importance as a symbol of the city’s foundation and development.

De Oude Kerk is also renowned for several reasons. Firstly, its architectural grandeur showcases a stunning blend of Gothic and Renaissance styles. Secondly, it houses an impressive collection of art, including notable works by Dutch masters such as Rembrandt’s “The Night Watchman.” Lastly, its association with the Red Light District adds a unique dimension, making it an intriguing destination for cultural enthusiasts.

De Oude Kerk: Amsterdam’s Historic Old Church
De Oude Kerk Church, cityscape and reflection at Amsterdam, Netherlands

Tickets to Visit De Oude Kerk:

To explore De Oude Kerk, visitors can purchase tickets online or use one of the Amsterdam City Cards and get admission without cost. It is necessary to book a time slot. Ticket prices typically range from €10-15 for adults, with reduced rates available for students, seniors, and children. An Audio tour is often included, providing insightful commentary as you navigate the church.

  • Regular Ticket: 13,50€
  • Youth (Age 13-17): 7,50€
  • Children (Age 6-12): 3€
  • Infant (Age 0-5): free

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De Oude Kerk with I Amsterdam City Card

Amsterdam-City-Cards-4In addition to De Oude Kerk, the I Amsterdam City Card offers more than 70 attractions in the city at no extra cost. You buy it once, choose the number of days, and can visit as many attractions as you like. As already mentioned, although De Oude Kerk is well worth a visit, you do not need more than one hour to explore many attractions in the same area as the Red Light District. This is exactly where the I Amsterdam Card helps you to save money. We tell you in detail how the I Amsterdam City Card works and how you can make the most of it for your trip.

All About the I Amsterdam Card

De Oude Kerk: Amsterdam’s Historic Old Church

Why is Amsterdam’s oldest church worth visiting?

Visiting De Oude Kerk in Amsterdam is definitely worth it for those with an appreciation for history, art, and cultural heritage. Here are a few reasons why it is worth visiting:

  1. Historical Significance: De Oude Kerk is the oldest parish church in Amsterdam, dating back to the 13th century. It holds great historical significance as a symbol of the city’s foundation and development.
  2. Architectural Beauty: The church’s stunning architecture, with its blend of Gothic and Renaissance styles, is a sight to behold. From the towering spire to the intricate details of the interior, De Oude Kerk showcases the craftsmanship of the past.
  3. Artistic Treasures: Inside the church, you’ll find an impressive collection of artworks, including pieces by renowned Dutch masters such as Rembrandt. Temporary exhibitions also bring contemporary art into the historical setting.
  4. Tranquil Atmosphere: Stepping into De Oude Kerk offers a serene and contemplative experience. The peaceful ambiance provides a moment of respite from the bustling streets of Amsterdam.
  5. Cultural Context: De Oude Kerk’s location in the Red Light District adds a unique layer of cultural context. Exploring the church allows visitors to appreciate the diverse facets of Amsterdam’s history and contemporary culture.
  6. Churchyard and Tombstones: The churchyard surrounding De Oude Kerk is home to ancient tombstones, offering a glimpse into Amsterdam’s past. It’s a place to reflect and contemplate the lives of those who came before.

Visiting De Oude Kerk allows you to immerse yourself in Amsterdam’s rich heritage, offering a blend of historical, architectural, and artistic wonders. Whether you are interested in the church’s history, art, or simply seeking a tranquil space to explore, De Oude Kerk provides a unique and worthwhile experience.

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Highlights of De Oude Kerk in Amsterdam:

  • The Magnificent Interior: Admire the awe-inspiring stained glass windows, intricate wooden vaults, and ornate chapels that adorn the church’s interior.
  • The Main Organ: Marvel at the majestic organ, one of the most significant in Europe, and if you’re lucky, attend a mesmerizing organ concert.
  • Art Exhibitions: Immerse yourself in the cultural atmosphere by exploring temporary art exhibitions that often showcase contemporary works within the historical setting.
  • The Tombstones: Wander through the churchyard, where you’ll find ancient tombstones bearing witness to centuries of Amsterdam’s history.
  • Climb the Tower: Embark on a thrilling climb up the tower of De Oude Kerk, rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views of the city below.

The History of De Oude Kerk:

De Oude Kerk in Amsterdam has an illustrious history marked by significant events and renowned individuals. Founded in the 13th century, this historic church boasts a remarkable legacy that spans centuries. The church tower, a prominent feature, offers a striking vantage point over the city.

In the 17th century, the renowned Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn walked the very same aisles that visitors traverse today. The church also holds a connection to Saskia van Uylenburgh, Rembrandt’s beloved wife, who was laid to rest within its walls. Organ music has long resonated through the sacred space, with De Oude Kerk being home to one of Europe’s most significant organs.

Throughout its existence, the church experienced both triumph and adversity. It survived a mob that plundered and damaged its interior during the 16th-century Reformation but was ultimately restored to its former glory. Today, the awe-inspiring De Oude Kerk stands as a testament to the rich religious and cultural heritage of Amsterdam. Visitors can explore its hallowed halls, appreciate the intricate architecture, and gain insights into the remarkable history of this Dutch treasure. As the oldest building in Amsterdam and dedicated to Saint Nicolas, its patron saint, De Oude Kerk continues to be a symbol of spiritual and historical significance, inviting all who enter to witness the enduring legacy it represents.

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What to Do Before or After Visiting De Oude Kerk:

  • Explore the Red Light District: Experience the vibrant atmosphere of Amsterdam’s most famous neighborhood, known for its canal-lined streets, shops, cafes, and nightlife.
  • Visit the Amsterdam Museum: Just a short walk away, the Amsterdam Museum offers further insights into the city’s history and culture.
  • Canal Cruise: Enjoy a leisurely canal cruise, immersing yourself in the picturesque beauty and architectural marvels of Amsterdam’s UNESCO-listed canal belt.

The Architecture of De Oude Kerk:

De Oude Kerk’s architecture is a captivating fusion of Gothic and Renaissance styles. Its towering spire, ornate windows, and stunning vaulted ceilings showcase the mastery of medieval craftsmanship. The church’s exterior features intricate stone carvings, while the interior boasts a vast nave with impressive wooden vaults. The unique combination of architectural elements makes De Oude Kerk a true masterpiece and a testament to the rich history of Amsterdam.

Visiting De Oude Kerk is a journey through time, immersing yourself in the rich heritage and captivating beauty of Amsterdam’s oldest parish church. From its magnificent architecture and renowned art collection to its fascinating location in the Red Light District, De Oude Kerk offers a unique and unforgettable cultural experience. So, as you explore the streets of Amsterdam, be sure to venture into the historical embrace of De Oude Kerk and discover the stories embedded within its walls.

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Frequently Asked Questions about De Oude Kerk in Amsterdam:

What is De Oude Kerk?

De Oude Kerk, also known as the Old Church, is the oldest parish church in Amsterdam and a historical landmark in the city.

What are the opening hours of De Oude Kerk?

The opening hours of De Oude Kerk may vary, but it is generally open to visitors from morning until early evening. It is advisable to check the official website or contact the church for the most up-to-date information.

s photography allowed inside De Oude Kerk?

Yes, photography is generally permitted inside De Oude Kerk for personal use. However, professional photography or the use of tripods may require special permission.

Are guided tours available at De Oude Kerk?

Yes, guided tours are available at De Oude Kerk, providing in-depth insights into the history, art, and architecture of the church. It is recommended to check the official website for tour schedules and availability.

What notable artworks can be found inside De Oude Kerk?

De Oude Kerk houses a collection of impressive artworks, including notable pieces by Dutch masters such as Rembrandt. The church also hosts temporary art exhibitions that showcase contemporary works within its historical setting.

Are there any restrictions for visitors at De Oude Kerk?

Visitors are requested to maintain a respectful and quiet atmosphere inside the church. The use of flash photography, loud conversations, and inappropriate behavior is discouraged.

Can De Oude Kerk be visited for religious services?

Yes, De Oude Kerk still functions as a place of worship and hosts religious services. Visitors are welcome to attend these services, but it is recommended to check the schedule in advance.

Is De Oude Kerk accessible for individuals with mobility challenges?

De Oude Kerk has limited accessibility due to its historical architecture. While some areas may be accessible, certain sections, such as the tower or crypt, may not be suitable for individuals with mobility challenges. It is advisable to contact the church for specific accessibility information.

What can visitors expect to see in the churchyard of De Oude Kerk?

The churchyard of De Oude Kerk is home to ancient tombstones that bear witness to centuries of Amsterdam’s history. Visitors can explore the churchyard and discover the remains of notable individuals from Amsterdam’s past.

Can tickets be purchased online in advance?

Yes, tickets to visit De Oude Kerk can often be purchased online in advance. This allows visitors to skip the ticket queue and ensure a smooth entry to the church.

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Das Reisen ist meine große Leidenschaft. Ich liebe es, die Wanderwege in Rio de Janeiro zu erkunden, die besten Strände in Miami zu entdecken, die ältesten Museen in Rom zu besuchen und noch die besten Gerichte in Paris zu verkosten.

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