A Day Out in The Hague

Thursday, 13 September 2018

Being less than an hour from Amsterdam, you really have no excuse to miss out The Hague if you're coming to the Netherlands. Holland's third biggest city boasts endless quirky shops, cafes and bars as well as a decent beach and of course, enough canals and bicycles to give the place that distinctive Dutch feel. Whether you're the kind that will happily spend hours in Zara, or you're the type who'd prefer to wonder round some museums - Den Haag's got you covered. Read on for our favourite things to do in the area and a few photos from our recent trip...

Admire the architecture

The Hague has both impressive old and new architecture. Nordeinde palace and the Ridderzaal contrast starkly with the modern high rises that you can see from all of the city. The Ridderzaal is part of the Binnenhof which is the workplace of the prime minister of The Netherlands and is found in the city centre. This area by the Binnenhof is a pleasant area to explore as it's right next to one of the bigger and prettier canals.

Escher Museum

This was the best museum we've been to in a long time. Escher was a Dutch artist from the area, famous for his mathematically inspired drawings and artwork. He was and in many people's eyes still is, the king of optical illusion. This naturally makes for a great museum, as a lot of his work is clever and will hold your attention.

Explore the area by bike

If you haven't already worked it out, The Netherlands is an absolute dream for getting around on two wheels. We were staying with friends in Wassenaar and so chose to cycle into the city from there - a route which is mainly through the woods and is completely on cycle paths. If you're staying in The Hague, we'd recommend doing it the other way around, as Wassenaar is a pretty little town worth a visit for it's amazing ice cream parlour. Alternatively, you could use bikes to cycle down to the sand dunes and beach at Scheveningen.

Head to the beach

If you're being realistic with the weather then you'll probably be pretty pleased with the beach at Scheveningen. Considering temperatures in Holland are very similar to the UK, we found it impressive that there were so many beach bars and cafes along the sand, all of which seemed pretty well established, rather than shoddily put up when the sun came out. Across the water on the English coastline you would be a lot less likely to find such a set up and everything often seems just that little bit more sad.

So basically, we were pleasantly surprised with the beach at the Hague. On top of this, it's very well maintained, there's plenty of space (even on a hot sunny day) and there are a number of adrenaline activities by the pier such as bungee jumping and zip-lining if you're that way inclined!

Walk in the dunes

The sand dunes around the Hague and Scheveningen are a dog-walkers' paradise, but dog or not, they are certainly worth a visit! If you fancy getting away from the busy city but aren't up for going to the beach then this is the perfect in between. With an extensive network of cycle paths and walking tracks you could easily spend an hour or so exploring the yellow hills.

Shopping in The Hague

In our opinion, The Hague makes a great place to go shopping. It's got all the big name brands you know and love, plus plenty of smaller individual shops which lure you in with their quirky window displays. The Court Quarter (Hofquartier) wouldn't be a bad place to start if you're looking for more up-market boutique buys or head to the areas around the Spui and Grote Markstraat for high street shopping.

Once again, thanks for reading!

Will & Melissa

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