Everyone is familiar with the iconic Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, the hiding place from where Anne, her family and all its occupants were arrested and deported to Nazi death camps, but not many know of Anne and her family's life in Amsterdam, before they had to hide away. If this is the case with you, this Tour with the knowledgable and learned guide, Hermelinde is perfect for you.
We met Hermelinde in the Merdeplein Square Park where stands a statue of Anne, all dressed up with layers of clothing and a suitcase, ready to make her way to her hiding place. The park is close to her apartment building, where she and her friends used to play. It was a solemn feeling standing in the same spot as where she would have been watching her flat, calling out to her beloved mother and sister as she played.
Next Hermelinde walked us in Anne and her sister's footsteps to their respective schools, which still exist! We also had a chance to visit the bookstore from where her father bought her iconic diary.
Hermelinde also took as past many artists flats and studios, pointing out to those who helped shelter Jews during the Nazi regime.
We were also shown the homes of the kindly Dutch people who helped tend to Anne, her family and the occupants of Anne Frank House before they were captured. In fact it was one of them, Miep Gies, a lady family friend, who managed to salvage pages of Anne's diary after the Nazi raid, which she handed over to Anne's tearful father, when he was released by the Allied forces from a concentration camp. Thanks to her and Anne's father, we have learnt so much of the Franks' lives, of their near and dear ones, friends and acquaintances and of the terrifying time in Amsterdam and Europe during the Nazi regime.
During the walk, Hermelinde also often pointed out to us buildings that existed during the Second World War and which are still standing in all their glory, very well maintained.
As we had young children, our Tour ended at a popular ice cream parlour and Hermelinde really allowed us to pile our cones high.
Being a native German, Hermelinde has been particularly touched by all the occurances of the Second World War, hence her taking us on this tour, where we were literally walking in many iconic footsteps was truly significant.
I whole heartedly recommed this uniquely different Tour. It's honestly not depressing, but instead very informative. It tells you of lives that were being well lived, before they were tragically turned upside down.
Do this Tour first and then visit The Anne Frank House- everything will then become much clearer for you.
Felicia Variava Albert, Manging Director, Blaze Tours and Travels Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai, India
We did this tour in the morning, and then the Anne Frank museum visit later in the afternoon note: walking tour is in different part of Amsterdam, and timed tickets are needed in advance for the AF Museum. Doing the walking tour in the morning added so much dimension to what we saw later in the museum. Esther, our tour guide, was wonderful. She carefully set up the big picture background in terms of immigration causes and life in this area in the 1930s before layering with many interesting facts about the Frank family. The architecture in the area was fascinating and we aren't big architecture buffs. We have 2 teens and she was very effective in finding ways to engage them. She truly painted a picture of what life was like for Jewish immigrants and how the Dutch were not necessarily complicit but very naive in allowing the Nazis to separate the Jewish community and slowly build their efforts to persecute them. Handled all of our questions very smoothly.
The Anne Frank walking tour was fantastic!! We really had a wonderful time and enjoyed our guided tour so much we went over our allocated time so much - we had to miss part of the tour....since our guide had another tour coming up. Thanks for a wonderful tour!! We will definitely have to come back to do the rest of the tour!!
The directions where rediculously confusing. We never made our tour because our directions said to meet in front of the Anne Frank statue in the square by the church. We were there and our guide never showed. The emergency number isn't operational on Saturday so what is the point of having an emergency number at all. And although my email and phone number was on file , no one called me. Finally finding a Dutch citizen to help translate the instructions, we came to find out we were 2.5 miles away from where we were to meet our guide. I asked the ticket lady at the Anne Frank House if we could still tour and she said no. And that this happends all the time . I made these reservations for myself and 5 other people 5 months ago because of the popularity of this museum. ALL of us were terribly disappointed. I have other reviews of Viator. Not good ones
this was probably the worse tour I have ever been on, I called the number on the voucher because it was confusing as to the meeting place, paid for a taxi because we were in the wrong place and the guide was very sweet and nice and totally not his fault, spend most of his time talking about anything else but Ann Frank, I feel that it was an over priced tour and I would not recommend it to anyone. Just honestly misleading to what it really is. I have booked with Viator many times and can't say enough about all the other tours but this one was a great disappointment.