16th – 25th April.


More than 400 museums will receive visitors digitally during National Museum Week.

Museums are eager to open their doors safely and completely to the public again. Yet again this is not possible during National Museum Week 2021. That is why this edition will also be digital. Everyone has been forced to live with restrictions on freedom in the past year. The fundamental right to cultural expression and leisure experience also came under pressure as a result. The public could no longer visit museums and the more than 400 museums affiliated with the Museum Association have been closed for a long time. More than ever, it is visible how important (cultural) freedom is.

Corona limitation provides digital acceleration in museums

In recent months, museums have taken full responsibility and cooperated as much as possible in the fight against the corona pandemic. Due to the limitations, museums have started to create other innovative possibilities to be able to continue to offer everyone access to museum collections – our real gold. And with success. There has been a real digital revolution in Dutch museums in the past year. As a result, more than 400 museums affiliated with the Museum Association offer hundreds of online activities during National Museum Week.

Museum week with Splinter

Splinter Chabot shows the most surprising and inspiring activities every day in Museum Week with Splinter. He will look for special online stories, activities and showpieces in Museum Week. From Maastricht to Den Helder and from Arnhem to Delft: Museum Week with Splinter extends throughout the entire museum country! His adventures can be followed daily via and the social media of Museum Week.

Golden Showpiece digital Museumplein

The digital Golden Showpiece is once again the heart of Museum Week this year, virtually on Museumplein this season. Everyone can then freely share his or her favorite showpiece with the rest of the Netherlands. Everyone can participate via by answering a simple question: “Which showpiece would you place first if you were Museum Director?”. With this, all entrants together create a new, digital National exhibition during Museum Week.

17 museums can still be visited by pilot Sneltesten

Museum card holders can still visit a number of museums throughout the Netherlands during Museum Week. 17 museums open their doors to the public for a limited number of days. Tickets for this are now available at by reserving a time slot and then taking a free quick test through the test centers. The Museum Association is participating in the pilot rapid tests so that the government can investigate how our society can open safely earlier. The association emphasizes that the corona protocol of museums works well and that museum visits are safe. Experience has already been gained with the well-functioning corona “museum protocol”: as far as is known, no infections have taken place in museums. Rapid tests should therefore not become a structural, unnecessary barrier to museum visits. Hopefully, all museum doors will open quickly and permanently: the museums, employees and volunteers are all set!

Museums are going digital

Dutch museums have developed massive digital initiatives to keep their museum collections accessible to everyone. And those initiatives are also found in large numbers by the public. The digital worldwide opening up of museum collections will also become a permanent and increasingly important part of museums’ earnings model. That is why there is also a trial with paid digital museum premium content via during the Museum Week. But of course nothing beats the real physical experience, confrontation and resonance with the museum showpieces. The museums are looking forward to turning the lights back on, opening the doors again and rolling out the red carpet safely for visitors again.

About the National Museum Week

National Museum Week is an annual event in which more than 400 museums across the country put their collections in the spotlight in an unmissable way. And thus invite ambassadors, fans and new public to be surprised, inspired or confronted with an enormous cultural capital that belongs to all of us: our real gold. The intended result is a stronger bond of all inhabitants of our country with the museum collections of the Netherlands. The National Museum Week is being organized for the seventh time this year and is completely digital due to the corona crisis. The theme is Discover together our real gold – in museums.

About the Museum Association

The National Museum Week is an initiative of the Museum Association, the trade association of more than 400 museums in the Netherlands. Together they work on strengthening the public interest of museums by stimulating a lasting bond between all residents of our country with museum collections. The Museum Association is also the initiator of the digital platform Museumkids and the Museumkidsweek, which takes place annually during the autumn holidays. The association is also the publisher of the Museumkaart. In 2019, some 1.4 million cardholders paid more than 9 million visits for which the museums received more than 60 million euros. Particularly in our rapidly changing society, museums tell stories that we should not forget. With their collections, museums surprise and enrich visitors, communities and society as a whole. Because only together do museums tell the ever-changing story of our society.