Let’s Get Cultural

Posted at: 16 Jan 2019 | Student Affairs

Do you love art, theatre and debates? Or do you just want to seem highly intellectual when guiding your parents through Amsterdam during their visit? Either way, I’ve collected the best cultural attractions you need to check out in the city throughout your semester.

Meet Vincent at the renowned Van Gogh Museum.

Your study at the HvA might be packed with classes, projects and deadlines, but luckily, you’ll have time to explore the city and its rich cultural life while you are here. Amsterdam offers something for everyone: be it art, theatre, comedy or film. Here are some addresses to try out.

Van Gogh Museum

You’ve probably read about it before (and so did the thousands of tourists who make their way through the museum everyday): What one might consider an overrated tourist magnet is in fact a fascinating experience you should absolutely not miss. On four floors, you get to dig into Vincent Van Gogh’s beautiful oevre, learn about his life and see the works of his fellow artist friends. Be sure to book your ticket online – otherwise, you won’t be able to enter the museum.

Museumplein 6, 1071 DJ Amsterdam

Tickets only available online for a standard price of 19€
Open daily from 9 am – 5 pm, on Fridays until 9 pm

Stedelijk Museum

Situated right opposite of Van Gogh Museum at Museumplein, Stedelijk is the place to be on a rainy Sunday afternoon. The futuristic museum, that resembles an U-boat from the outside, exhibits contemporary art in all its shapes and forms. You’ll spend a bunch of entertaining hours with friends or on your own there for sure – for as little as 9€.

Museumplein 10, 1071 DJ Amsterdam
Student fare: 9€
Open daily from 10 am – 6 pm, on Fridays until 10 pm

De Balie

Whether you are a politics-junkie, enjoy indie movies or are addicted to theatre: You should definitely give De Balie a try. The charming cultural centre can be found right at the heart of Amsterdam near Leidseplein and offers political debates, talk shows, theatre performances and screenings of movies you would have never seen otherwise.

Kleine Gartmanplantsoen 10, 1017 RR Amsterdam

Student fare: 10€
Cards: Buy online or call the cashier: +31 (0)20 553 5100

Boom Chicago

Want to spend a fun night out with friends or just need a cheering up? Boom Chicago hosts improv nights and comedy shows on pretty much every day of the week. Their name refers to both the American comedy troop and the venue that’s located on the picturesque Rozengracht in the centre of Amsterdam’s hip Jordaan district. Good to know: All their shows are performed in English! If you feel like getting on stage yourself, Boom Chicago also offers workshops set to perfect your improv skills. Their cosy bar invites you to have a drink or two afterwards.

Rozengracht 117, 1016 LV Amsterdam
Ticket prices vary but should never exceed 10€, I promise
Book online or call the box office at +31 (0)20 217 0400


You might have taken courses in photography, writing or dance here already. But apart from housing numerous workshops, CREA also presents debate rounds, improv shows, theatre and movies at their hall, many of them in English. As they focus on (international) students, their ticket prices never go beyond a poor student’s budget. You might even enter some events for free!

Nieuwe Achtergracht 170, 1018 WV Amsterdam
Check website for upcoming shows and prices


If you happen to stay in Amsterdam during the fall, be sure to watch one of the countless movies shown at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) . The festival, one of the biggest worldwide, takes place at cinemas around the city in November each year. With your student-ID, you get to exclusively watch movies for as little as 8,50€. Need I say more?

Check website for dates, venues and booking

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