The Dam Square is located in the centre of Amsterdam. A rectangular square of approx. 100 metres wide and 200 metres long. Dam Square is located 750 metres south of Central Station. There are some special buildings on the Dam Square. There are the New Church, the Palace on Dam Square, and the National Monument.
The Dam Square: The New Church
The oldest parts of the Nieuwe Kerk date from 1421, these are the choir and the transept. Around 1435 the construction of the ship started. The church has been on fire three times, and the fire of 1645 caused the most damage. During this fire the roof burned almost completely. Since 1814 the church has been used for inaugurations and the dedication of a royal wedding. Nowadays, there are no longer any church services in the New Church. In 1980 the church was transferred to the 'National Foundation The New Church'. Since then, this foundation has organised activities in the church, which are often varied exhibitions and organ concerts.
Dam Square: Palace on Dam Square
The Palace on Dam Square was built between 1868 and 1665 as a town hall. The palace is considered to be the most important Dutch historical and cultural monument of the Golden Age. The building was used as a town hall until 1808. It was then offered as a palace to King Louis Napoleon. In 1813 William I returned the building to Amsterdam as a town hall, but the city council refrained from moving it. The building has been in use as the Royal Palace of the Dutch royal family since 1815. The palace is nowadays mainly used for ceremonial state and family affairs. If the royal family does not use the palace, the building is opened by 'Stichting Koninklijk Paleis Amsterdam'. Often they hold an exhibition in the summer.
Dam Square: National Monument
The National Monument was built in 1956 to commemorate the Second World War in the Netherlands. In 2007, the monument was nominated for inclusion in the list of National Monuments. In 2009 the monument was definitively added as a National Monument. The monument is the centrepiece of the National Commemoration of Death, attended by the King, every year on May 4th.