Amsterdam trip

As I mentioned in my last post, I went to Amsterdam for a museum visit in August. I saw some great things which I’ll tell you about in the next few posts.

One of the main places I wanted to see was Naturalis in Leiden. A large new exhibition space was created about ten years ago to house the national natural history collection.

The Natures Theatre gallery, Naturalis

The Nature's Theatre gallery, Naturalis

Your visit starts in the geology gallery called Primeval Parade. This gallery had some spectacular fossils, but it was very dark and I found it disappointing. I got the impression they had been asked to show the public biodiversity from the past and had done this by putting all their best fossils on display and put a label next to them. Not very imaginative or exciting!

One floor up of the Nature’s Theatre gallery. This was visually impressive, but again I got the impression they had been asked to show the public biodiversity and had done this by putting all their best specimens on display and put a label next to them.

The best two galleries were the Life gallery which focused on movement and the Wildebeest temporary exhibition. The life gallery had some fantastic taxidermy helping explain how movement works. The hunting scenes and flight were particularly good. The Wildebeest exhibition had some great inter-actives such as creeping up on the herd and avoiding crocodiles coming up  in a river. The changes from day to night every few minutes was very effective.

Overall Naturalis was disappointing, with a few great bits.

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