Amsterdam is home to some very interesting museums. Whether it’s museums housing works of art by some of the best painters in history or museums about the naval history of the Netherlands, there is something for people with different interests. At the heart of the bustling city centre in the Red Light District area is one of the oldest museums in the city: Museum Ons’ Lieve Heer op Solder. This is the museum where visitors experience the Dutch Golden Age in a special way; a beautiful and unique 17th-century house with a church in the attic. No less than 350 years ago, Jan Hartman bought the building on Oudezijds Voorburgwal together with the two adjacent buildings on Heintje Hoekssteeg. He converted the attic floors of the three houses into a Catholic church entirely in accordance with the then prevailing rules; nothing on the outside suggested that it was a church.
A Catholic Church in the Attic of a 17th-Century House
To ensure the preservation of the monument, all living spaces, stairs and the beautiful attic church had to be restored. As a visitor, you experience what the house church looked like when it was used as a Catholic church. Color, light and decoration exude the atmosphere of the period in which the last masses took place in the attic church at the end of the 19th century. The clandestine churches were of great importance during this period because they marked the beginning of religious tolerance. A free audio tour tells the stories of the different periods in the house. The museum has a new entrance building with a shop and a cosy café. This way you can enjoy a drink and a snack after the walk.