GuruWalk Original
Free tour

The Jewish Quarter, WWII & the Anne Frank Story

Duration: 2h and 15min
Languages: English
Guru: Jon
Quality Verified Registered on August 03, 2021

I am an experienced guide and history buff who is fascinated by World War II, Hitler's propoganda of hate and its terrible consequences. I find that stories of the Nazi occupation, resistance and collaboration in Amsterdam form the most meaningful tour I can give, showing how the Holocaust took place even in Amsterdam, "The Jerusalem of the West" and the home of tolerance. I look forward to sharing this with you, Jon Feller

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GuruWalk Original

GW Originals free walking tours are chosen by our staff among the best and are unique tours that you will only find on GuruWalk.

  • No minimum number of attendees
    No minimum number of attendees is required for the tour
  • Free booking and cancellation
    Free payment tour, no set price, booking and cancellation are free
  • Accepts electronic payment
    This tour allows payment by electronic means or credit card

Tour description

Why was Amsterdam the safest place for Jews to live for 350 years until 1940, when the Netherlands became the country with the highest percentage (75%) of Jews murdered in Western Europe?

We will use Anne Frank’s story and many other stories to understand what it was like to live in a Nazi regime of terror for both Jews and non-Jews,

This is the tour you need to take to understand WWII and the Holocaust in Amsterdam. You will visit the Shadow Wall, the National Holocaust Names Monument, The National Holocaust Museum, and the Auschwitz Monument in the Jewish Quarter among other key sites.

You will visit many more houses with stories of the incredible exploits of heroes and traitors during the war, both Jewish and Christian. 

  • The Jewish children who were bravely saved from the transit center nursery.
  • The nurse who led a resistance cell whose existence was never discovered by the Nazis.
  • The paid informants who hunted down Jews in hiding, including the Jewish woman accused of betraying seven hundred Jews.
  • The effects of Queen Wilhelmina's anti-Semitism on the fates of Dutch Jews.

We will also discuss the kinds of lies used to create such virulent anti-Semitism, and how lies continue to be used today to foment hate and war.

The tour will take place in the Jewish Quarter, the heart of Jewish culture in Amsterdam.  We begin at the Spinoza monument.

We will arrive at the Portuguese Synagogue two hours and 15 minutes after the beginning of the tour. The tour will be completely over within two and a half hours.

Since we are in Amsterdam, we will try to make even this tour about WWII as gezellig (friendly and convivial) as possible.

This tour is a terrific substitute or accompaniment for the Anne Frank House (annefrank.org). You can only buy tickets to the Anne Frank House through their website two months ahead of time. Read the link below and follow the directions closely!. Book the terrific introductory program in English if it is available. https://www.annefrank.org/en/museum/tickets/

We do not visit the Anne Frank museum, since there is really nothing to see except her statue outside of the museum. Come on this tour to find out what the Jews and the Dutch experienced in WWII.

The Van Gogh Museum and Rijksmuseum are usually sold out for at least a week or more.  Reserve early for many museums, including the National Holocaust Museum.

If you will visit at least four Dutch museums (including all the museums above), it can be a good idea to buy a Museum Card, good at 450 museums for one year. You can buy a temporary pass at the first museum you visit, use that pass five times, and receive a permanent pass within five days or less.  If ordering tickets for the Anne Frank House or another museum, just mark that you have a Museum Card and don't pay anything online.  Then buy the card at the first museum you visit. https://www.museum.nl/en/museumpass

I  look forward to seeing you soon - Jon

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What will we visit on this tour?

  • Meeting point:
    Zwanenburgwal 15, 1011 VW Amsterdam, ...
    Zwanenburgwal 15, 1011 VW Amsterdam, Netherlands
    View on map

    To find the meeting point, type in Frenzi Zwanenburgwal in Google Maps or iMAPS. https://maps.app.goo.gl/h8EGwhPtg2rAF7X19. From Frenzi, cross the bridge and go to the Spinoza Monument, a statue of a man in a funny cape. We will meet there. Unfortunately, just entering Spinoza Monument will probably get you lost.

  • 1
    Outside visit
    Spinoza Monument

    Spinoza, the child of Portuguese-Jewish immigrants born in Amsterdam in 1632, was the most radical of all Enlightenment philosophers and embodies the freedom of thought of Amsterdam in the 1600s.

  • 2
    Outside visit
    Joods Verzetsmonument

    The Monument to Jewish Resistance.

  • 3
    Outside visit
    National Opera & Ballet

    The lobby has the commemorative statue "The Fiddler".

  • 4
    Outside visit
    Hermitage / Hart Museum

    We will tell a story in the beautiful inner courtyard. Free bathrooms are also available.

  • 5
    Outside visit
    The Shadow Wall

    Commemorates the Jews who lived in these apartments in WWII and were killed by the Nazi occupation.

  • 6
    Outside visit
    National Holocaust Names Monument

    This 2021 monument designed by Daniel Liebeskind commemorates all 102,000 Dutch Jews and 220 Dutch gypsies killed by the Nazis.

  • 7
    Outside visit
    National Holocaust Museum & Jewish Theater (Jewish Cultural Quarter)

    The Nazis changed the Dutch Theatre into the Jewish Theatre in 1940 and then into a Jewish transit camp in July of 1942. The theatre and the daycare centre/school across the street are now the new National Holocaust Museum.

  • 8
    Outside visit

    The Dutch monument to the victims of Auschwitz.

  • 9
    Outside visit
    Portugese Synagoge

    The synagogue is my favourite non-art museum in the Netherlands. The plaza is the scene of the first roundup of Jews in the Netherlands.

How much does this tour cost?

Free tours do not have a set price, instead, each person gives the guru at the end of the tour the amount that he or she considers appropriate (these usually range from €10 to $50 depending on satisfaction with the tour).

Tour opinions

894 ratings
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Kate 29 May 2024

Verified booking
Travelled alone - May 2024
A stellar tour. I was surprised. It's a heavy subject but just the right amount if light hearted information to help the serious stuff. This is a compact walking tour that anyone can do, the info is compact too, with a quiz element which keeps you on your toes, listening and interested. Great 😃
Carolina 28 May 2024

Verified booking
Travelled in couple - May 2024
Jon demonstrated the great knowledge he has in the topics. His explanations were absolutely clear and interesting.
Paul 25 May 2024

Verified booking
Travelled alone - May 2024
This is the best tour about the WW2 period in Amsterdam. Period. Jon is amazing. He tells a story you will never forget and he is truly a walking Wikipedia. No visit to Amsterdam is complete without taking this tour. Highly recommended.
Eden 24 May 2024

Verified booking
Travelled alone - May 2024
Jon was lovely and very friendly. He is clearly enthusiastic about sharing the history of Amsterdam and has thoughtful ways of engaging with the tour goers. I appreciated the stroopwafels and his very thorough recommendations list. 100% must do this tour if you’re in Amsterdam!
Sheri 24 May 2024

Verified booking
Travelled in group - May 2024
I enjoyed Jon’s tour. He was very knowledgeable and made sure everyone was engaged. Jon’s historical narrative included many interesting stories and facts previously unknown to me. The photos he shared were a plus, as were the Stroopwafel treats he brought along to share!
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Who is this tour for?

Non suitable for people with reduced mobility.
Does not accept large group reservations.
Suitable for carrying pets.

What should you know?

Minimum of attendees
There is no minimum number of people required for the tour.
Additional costs:
The tour does not require the payment of entrance fees or additional expenses.
Free cancellation
If you will not be able to attend the tour, please cancel your booking, otherwise the guide will be waiting for you.
Payment methods
Electronic or credit card payment is accepted.
When do you want to go?
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