Amsterdam’s most important Roman Catholic Church, and, in fact, Amsterdam’s only basilica, was built between 1884 and 1887 and is now of the city’s most recognizable icons thanks to striking Neo-Baroque and Neo-Renaissance features. The façade, which is flanked by two imposing towers, features an intricate rose window depicting Christ and the four Evangelists made in the acclaimed Van den Bossche and Crevels workshop. The basilica’s interior is lavishly decorated with white and red marble, a collection of religious murals, dozens of statues, intricate stained glass, and many more luxurious attributes.
St Nicholas Church holds a special place in the heart of the Roman Catholics of Amsterdam; for centuries, they were banned from practicing their faith freely and were forced to turn to clandestine networks as the Kingdom of the Netherlands was openly Protestant. When the freedom of religion finally prevailed in Amsterdam, a new Catholic church was needed to meet the rapidly increasing demand. It was elevated to basilica minor to celebrate its 125th anniversary in 2012.
The church occasionally hosts concerts and recitals featuring the magnificently restored 19th-century Sauer organ. Note that the church is only open to the public for a few hours a day depending on events and masses.