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Citytrip Utrecht: Central Museum

Contemporary artwork of dining table and chairs by Joost van Bleiswijk

Utrecht is a great city for a daytrip. The wharves and wharf cellars at the Oudegracht (English: Old Canal) remain mind-blowing and the view from the Domtoren is always mesmerizing (see my earlier blog on the Domtoren). Now, I have an addition to your Must-Definitely-Do List: the Centraal Museum (in English: Central Museum). I was pleasantly surprised by the museum’s collection of old and contemporary art. The Museum is located in the former Convent of Saint Agnes (Agnietenklooster) founded in the year 1420. Through the years it also housed a school, a factory, an orphanage and a military base before it became part of the Central Museum in 1921.

Here are a few of my favorite sections of the Centraal Museum:

Natalia Ossef

Natalia Ossef is an artist originally from Syria and living in the Netherlands for many years. I was really impressed by her transparant dresses that appear to float in space. As if you were looking at something very precarious that is present that very moment but could dissolve into the air any moment.

Artwork of hanging dresses by Natalia Ossef

Artwork by Natalia Ossef; Centraal Museum Utrecht

Dick Bruna

Dick Bruna was a very famous Dutch author, graphic designer and illustrator who most Dutch adults and Children know from is children’s books Miffy (in Dutch: Nijntje). Unfortunately, he passed away in 2017, but his original office furniture and supplies are on display on the top floor of the Centraal Museum. He was good friends with another famous artist Gerrit Rietveld. Can you tell the similarities in their work?

Joost van Bleiswijk

Joost van Bleiswijk is a Dutch artist with an easily recognizable style.  He rips and tears stuff apart and magically puts them together not using screws or glue. I find his work raw and refined at the same time. Supposedly, he arranged his artworks in the Centraal Museum himself.

Artwork of a black interior by artist Joost van Bleiswijk

Joost van Bleiswijk; Centraal Museum Utrecht

Good to know

You can easily book your tickets online. Ticket price is €15 for adults and free for museum card holders. On the ground floor there is a lovely little garden restaurant for lunch, cakes and drinks.

If you leave the museum and turn left and then turn right at the end of the road (Agnietenstraat) you will walk past the famous Oudegracht (English Old Canal) that will lead you into the heart of Utrecht.

How to get there

From Central Station Utrecht you take tram 2 towards Museumkwartier (Museum Quarter). From train station Utrecht Vaartsche Rijn it is a 10-minute walk.

Tips for drinks

We had drinks at the Louis Hardlooper Complex with its sunny terrace, just around the corner. It is a 5-minute walk from the Centraal Museum. This former police office became a movie theater in 2004.


About the author: Laura Danielle is a co-founder of Comedy Walks: stand-up comedy shows with the city as a stage, or, if you like, city tours with a professional stand-up comedian as a guide. We currently run Comedy Walks in Amsterdam, Utrecht and Eindhoven.