BODY WORLDS: The Happiness Project is part of the world-famous exhibitions BODY WORLDS: The Original Exhibition of Real Human Bodies. These are worldwide exhibitions where real plastinated human bodies can be seen. Human bodies that have been treated in a special way so that the dissolution process is prevented. The plastination method was invented in 1977 by the German anatomist Dr. Gunther von Hagens.
Plastination is a method in which the tissue fluid is replaced by reaction plastics such as silicone rubber with the aid of a special vacuum process. The decomposition and desiccation process is thus completely terminated. The patented plastination method makes it possible to view the inside of the human body in a unique way.
The exhibited pieces in the BODY WORLDS exhibitions all come from the donor program. People can sign up for this. They then indicate that their body, after death, may be used for medical science and education. Most of the whole bodies come from this donor program. Only a few organs, fetuses and specific preparations that have noticeable deviations come from old anatomical collections and institutes. It has been agreed with the donors that their identity and cause of death will not be made public. The exhibitions focus on the nature of the bodies and not on personal information. Currently, there are 13,000 registered donors in the Body Donation Program.
The exhibitions of Gunter von Hägens aim to inform a broad public about the functioning of the human body. By means of the plastinates, the public gets an insight into the functioning of organs, the development of diseases and the effects that certain actions have on human health. With this BODY WORLDS wants to arouse the interest in anatomy and psychology, increase knowledge and encourage people to live healthier.
The position of the plastinates has been determined with great care and serves an educational purpose. The bodies that are in an athletic position, for example, clearly show what the muscles do during exercise. The positions have been chosen to show the anatomy of the human body even better.
It is not allowed to touch the exhibited bodies.
Before the opening of the American premiere of BODY WORLDS, a committee consisting of theologians, ethicists, academics and medical experts has extensively discussed the ethical issues that come with these exhibitions. Led by the Californian Science Center in Los Angeles, an 'Ethics Review of the origins of bodies in BODY WORLDS' was written based on this consultation.
The exhibition BODY WORLDS: The Happiness Project can be seen permanently in Amsterdam.
There are no age limits for a visit to the exhibition for children or young people who are accompanied by educators. We do advise to prepare the children for the visit. Parents and teachers must decide for themselves whether the children and young people in their care are adequately prepared for the BODY WORLDS exhibition visit.
It is not allowed to eat or drink during your visit to BODY WORLDS: The Happiness Project.
The exhibition is located at Damrak 66 in the centre of Amsterdam.
The location is easily accessible by public transport. Several trams stop in front of the door (4, 14 and 24) and it is only a ten-minute walk from Amsterdam Central Station (the nearest train and bus station).
There are several parking garages near the location. The nearest is the garage of Q-park under the Bijenkorf department store.
When you want to park with a coach at BODY WORLDS you can visit the five municipal parking lots in or near the city centre. In total, more than 116 parking spaces are available here for coaches:
It can be cheaper to buy your tickets online in advance. This also allows you to choose a time slot so that you can simply enter and do not run the risk of waiting.
Simply visit our ticket page and book your tickets by choosing a date, time and number of guests.
Prices of tickets can differ online and at the checkout. For the most up-to-date information you can consult our website.
Yes, it is also possible to by tickets at the ticket office.
BODY WORLDS: The Happiness Project is not a museum, so the museum year card is not valid for the exhibition.
Yes, though only at the door, to make sure there are tickets available it is best to check the website just before you wish to visit.
Here you’ll find the current opening times
About 2 hours
Once inside, you may stay in the exhibition for as long as you like, within normal opening times.
Yes, you can visit BODY WORLDS: The Happiness Project with a stroller or pram.
BODY WORLDS: The Happiness Project is in both Dutch and English. The signs on the walls are in both languages.
An audio guide is available at the box office.
The audio guide is available in Dutch, English, German, Spanish, Italian and French.
Yes, it is allowed to take photos in the exhibition.
The exhibition is easily accessible for the disabled. However, the building has several floors, which means that the lift has to be used. For more information, visit our Accessibility page.
Please send an email to email@example.com including which date and time you wish to visit and how many people are in your group.
For one time-slot it is possible to book for a maximum of 150 people. However, a group with more than 25 people, is divided into smaller groups of around 20 to 25 people each. Group by group will enter and have a short introduction of 5 to 10 minutes, including the storage of the bags in the lockers — the gap between these smaller groups 5 to 10 minutes. It is not necessary to place different bookings when the group is over 25 people.
If you want to change the number of people on your booking, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to change your booking.
On our website, you can find free educational material for primary and secondary education under the section 'schools & groups' in Dutch only.
We do not print out the educational material for schools, but you can easily do this yourself via our website.
Please send your booking request to email@example.com.