Museum Rotterdam '40-'45 NU

Top choice in Rotterdam

Good things often come in small packages, and so it is with this small but excellent museum sheltered under a bridge on the Coolhaven. An eight-minute immersive multimedia experience outlines the terror and destruction caused by the bombing of Rotterdam on 14 May 1940, when 54 German aircraft dropped 1300 bombs on the city over a 13-minute period. Artefact-driven displays focus on all aspects of the wartime experience, interspersing tales of optimism and bravery among many sad stories.

Topics addressed in the well-labelled displays include the great fire that followed the bombing, the treatment of Rotterdam's Jewish community, the equally destructive Allied bombings of 1943 and the liberation of the city by Canadian troops on 8 May 1945. A thought-provoking and depressing display in the foyer reminds visitors that many other cities have undergone experiences such as Rotterdam's in recent times.

During Dutch school holidays, the museum is open 10am to 5pm Tuesday to Friday as well as weekends; check the website for holiday dates.

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