The Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum is an iconic cannabis destination in Amsterdam. Founded in 1985 by Dutch philanthropist Ben Dronkers, it is the world's oldest museum dedicated to the Cannabis sativa (L.) plant. Cannabis, or pot, dope, weed and marijuana as it's also known, has been part of civilisation for thousands of years. It’s considered among the oldest plants cultivated by humans. 

    The museum's unique collection of over 9,000 cannabis-related artefacts takes you on a journey to discover the history of cannabis and how different cultures have used the plant throughout the centuries. You can also learn about the modern-day medicinal and industrial applications of hemp.

    The Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum is in Amsterdam's city centre and easily accessible by public transport. It's a good idea to allocate 1 to 2 hours to explore its exhibits. Read our guide below to find out why a visit to the Hash Marihuana & Hemp Museum can be a highlight of your trip to Amsterdam. 

    Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum in Amsterdam - one of the highlights of 10 Things to Do Off the Beaten Track in Amsterdam (Read all about Amsterdam here)

    What are the highlights of the Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum?

    The Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum offers a unique cultural experience for visitors to Amsterdam. The museum is divided into different sections, such as cannabis and hash, hemp, medicine and popular culture. You can discover the spiritual, medical and recreational uses of cannabis worldwide. On display are rare cannabis artefacts from the pre-prohibition era and items from the 1936 film, Reefer Madness.

    Expect to see ancient smoking apparatuses, including embellished African pipes, oriental water pipes and Dutch pipes made from white limestone. There is also a lovely collection of unusual artworks by famous 17th-century Dutch artists, such as Adriaen Brouwer, David Teniers the Younger and Hendrick Sorgh. The paintings depict medieval people getting high in “smoking houses”, which were the coffeeshops in those days.

    photo by Didier le Ger (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

    What else can you do at the Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum?

    Amsterdam's Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum pays tribute to the history, culture and social questions surrounding the use of the hemp plant. Hemp has been used for thousands of years to make ropes, textiles and paper. As you explore the museum, you can learn how hemp has been used in the past and continues to be used today. Exhibits include a selection of modern items made from hemp, including a guitar, surfboard, didgeridoo and a chair for an underground train.

    Be sure to visit the live cannabis garden to see different varieties in various stages of growing and flowering. Stick around in the afternoon for the museum’s vaporiser demonstration. Adults may feel the effects. You can buy souvenirs and seeds at the small gift shop attached to the museum.

    The museum ticket includes a free audio guide in multiple languages, including English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

    photo by asdfmvoie (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

    Good to know about the Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum

    The Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum is in Amsterdam's city centre, so it's almost impossible to reach the museum by car. But, if you're travelling by public transport, the closest Amsterdam Metro station is Nieuwmarkt. It's then an easy 4-minute walk to the museum. 

    After your visit, explore the surrounding neighbourhoods and attractions. A moment's stroll away is the Canal Ring, De Wallen, Dam Square, Royal Palace Amsterdam, and the Rembrandt House Museum. A few blocks away lie the pedestrian-friendly Kalverstraat and the quaint shops of Haalremmerdijk. 

    Hash Marihuana and Hemp Museum in Amsterdam

    Location: Oudezijds Achterburgwal 148, 1012 DV Amsterdam, Netherlands

    Open: Daily from 11 am to 7 pm

    Phone: +31 (0)20 624 8926

    Jacqui de Klerk | Contributing Writer

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