Happy and excited– I was kicking my feet as I was looking at my itinerary for the day. I’m going to visit the Anne Frank House.. finally! I was even more ecstatic when I saw that the line was just short. I heard that the queue is usually very long so what a wonderful day to be bright and optimistic, right? But not too long— my vibrant mood quickly shifted to a shade darker the moment I entered the museum.
Tales of horror and destruction embroidered in Anne’s diary drained my energy. Once inside, you can go according to your own pace but not too slow, OK? Because at some point, the group will be in a narrow hallway or a small room and trust me, you definitely don’t want to be the cause of delay.
What can you expect from Anne Frank’s House?
Now, I’m not going to give you a history lesson here. So I’m just going to leave you with what I saw while I took the tour.
An excerpt from Anne Frank’s diary will greet you.
Her words just hit me. It was just the first stop on the tour and I already felt really heavy.
Old pictures of Anne Frank during her time
Some were from her childhood. Some from the time they were hiding in the Secret Annex.
Video clips, Documentary, and Interviews
At some point, there were rooms where you can watch old video clips during the Nazi invasion. Near the end of the tour, there was an interview with Otto Frank (Anne’s father).
Miniature version (Scale model) of the Anne Frank House
See the entire house from a bird’s-eye view.
Trivia: (From the museum guide) Why are the rooms in the hiding place empty?
After the arrest of the people in hiding, the annex is emptied by order of the Nazi occupier. When the Secret Annex becomes a museum in 1960, Otto Frank insists the rooms remain empty. The empty house symbolizes the void left behind by the millions of people who were deported and never returned.
The famous movable bookcase
One of the sights that I was looking forward to see. The bookcase that concealed the door to the Secret Annex– their hiding place.
The hiding place
Even walked through the hiding place– Anne Frank’s room, Peter van Pel’s room, etc.
Trivia: (From the museum guide) Is there a radio in the Secret Annex?
There is a small radio in the communal living room. The people in hiding often listen to the BBC and draw hope from the reporting on the progress of the war.
Anne Frank’s diary
Kept in a glass to preserve Anne’s words.
Where you can see all of Anne Frank’s works. How she made an impact through her writing.
Souvenir shop and Cafe
Lastly, there’s a souvenir shop and a cafe where you can relax and compose yourself after a heavy walk around the Anne Frank House.
Rules and considerations to follow while inside Anne Frank’s House:
- No taking of pictures or filming videos. Why? Here’s an obvious reason: You can slow other people down trying to take an Instagram-worthy picture. And most importantly, the flash of your cameras can also damage the artifacts.
- No bringing of large bags. For example: your luggage. Just like every tourists, I was also very excited to go to the Anne Frank House that I thought of dragging my luggage with me. Thank Heavens I did not push through after all the narrow pathways and steep stairs in the house. It’s not allowed in the first place so.. thank heavens!
- No pets allowed. Sadly, you can’t take your squishy little angels inside. Much better if you save them for an afternoon walk at the park.
Another important thing that should be kept in mind is the accessibility of the place for PWDs (Person with Disability). The Anne Frank House is not entirely accessible for disabled persons. The main house, where the Frank family were hiding, was designed with steep staircases– a very typical Amsterdam house design — so people on wheelchairs cannot access this place. However, the new building where you can find the exhibits has an elevator. I also believe the museum staff can also assist you as needed.
It took me an hour or so to walk around the house and I almost cannot feel my knees afterwards. It felt like I was carrying a heavy burden with me and I just have to shake it off.. *insert Taylor Swift’s song*
Have you been to the Anne Frank House? How was your experience?