Tours The Hague
Tours The Hague
The Hague is undoubtedly a city you must have visited in the Netherlands. Everything you expect from a nice weekend or vacation destination can be found here. You have culture, history, nature and of course politics and the Royal House. And because The Hague is located by the sea, you can perfectly extend your city trip into a full-fledged vacation in the Netherlands!
1. The Binnenhof and Ridderzaal
In the center of The Hague you will find the Binnenhof, the political heart of the Netherlands. You can enter the Binnenhof freely from the beautiful ‘Buitenhof’ and through ‘Plein’. You can walk between the famous places of which the Torentje, the Ridderzaal and the House of Representatives are the most important and best known.
- The Torentje is beautifully situated at Het Binnenhof and is the workplace of the prime minister of the Netherlands.
- The King of the Netherlands reads the speech from the throne in the Ridderzaal
- In the Lower Chamber, the most important political decisions are made and debates are held. It is situated on the beautiful Hofvijver, which can also be easily seen from the Binnenhof.
You can visit both the Knights’ Hall and the Lower House during a guided tour. Unfortunately the Torentje is not open to the public. This tour can be booked through ProDemos. It costs 11 euros and takes one and a half hours. You must book in advance and be able to show a valid ID on the spot.
2. Noordeinde Palace
Noordeinde Palace is the working palace of the Dutch king and is located in the center of The Hague. From the station, the Malieveld, the shopping streets and Het Binnenhof you can walk there in a few minutes. Several royal weddings have taken place here. Palace Noordeinde is unfortunately not to be visited from the inside, but the outside is definitely worth it! So take a walk here and stop by the palace garden to enjoy the peace..
3. Prison Gate Museum
This medieval prison is located near the Hofvijver and was the main gate to the Binnenhof from the 13th century. A few centuries later it became a prison and courthouse where suspected criminals awaited their trial. For over 400 years, prisoners have been held here, including some famous regents.
Tense stories and political conspiracies
Visit the museum and listen to the exciting stories about political conspiracies, the punishments imposed on prisoners and life in the cells. You don’t just see it, you actually experience it. For example, the convicts were given a sign around their necks stating the reason for their execution. Some of these plates can still be seen in the museum.
Be aware that the story behind this former prison is quite sensitive and therefore not suitable for everyone. But do you wonder what kind of cells they were held in? What kind of punishments they received and if there was a difference between rich and poor criminals? Then be sure to take a guide with you on your tour!
4. The Mauritshuis
Adjacent to the Binnenhof is one of the most famous and important museums in the Netherlands. The Mauritshuis is for many people the reason to visit The Hague and admire the government collection of over 800 paintings of Dutch painting. This collection includes works by Rembrandt and Vermeer, among others. Also on Tripadvisor, the Mauritshuis is the number 1 attraction in The Hague.
There are both famous and less famous paintings, but the masterpiece is undoubtedly ‘The girl with the pearl earring’ by Vermeer.
Opening times and prices
- Don’t skip this museum. It is open every day and for €15.50 you can see the entire collection.
- For children, school children and adults, the museum is open only.
- Discounted prices apply for children, schoolchildren and groups. If you have a Dutch museum card you will be admitted free of charge.
- More info on the website
5. More museums
Besides the Mauritshuis, there are other popular museums in The Hague. Visit Escher in het Paleis, Panorama Mesdag or the Kunstmuseum.
Escher in het Paleis
Escher in het Paleis is a permanent exhibition of the very special artist Escher in the former winter palace of Queen Emma. Escher is known for his paintings with an effect of “optical illusion”. His two best-known works of art show an infinite loop of stairs and birds flying both up and down. The museum is interactive and there is a floor that lets you discover optical illusions.
The museum is open every day except Mondays and charges an admission fee of €10. Discounted prices apply for children, schoolchildren and groups.
Panorama Mesdag, measuring 120 x 14 meters, is the largest painting in the Netherlands. It is a true panorama of the sea and dunes surrounding The Hague. You can view it 360 degrees which makes it a unique work of art and therefore also makes it popular.
Panorama Mesdag is open every day and admission costs €12.50.
The Art Museum
The Art Museum is located between the center of The Hague and the beach in Scheveningen. The museum doesn’t look spectacular from the outside, but it has works by Picasso and Mondrian with the absolute highlight being the world famous ‘Victory Boogie Woogie’.
6. The Peace Palace
This palace is the most photographed building of The Hague. Not surprisingly, it is namely a very important and iconic building. It houses the International Court of Justice. It also houses the Academy of International Law, where law students from all over the world study. The library alone is very prestigious and students are allowed to use it.
Opening times and tickets
- The Peace Palace isnot open to the public, except for a few weekends a year.
- Want to absolutely know what it looks like inside? Then you need to buy tickets in advance. A guided tour lasts 45 minutes and costs €11.
- Tickets can only be purchased through their own website.
- The visitor center does have free access and is open every day except Mondays and holidays.
- Here you can learn more about the building and the organizations housed there.
- You can also see the peace flame and the World Peace Path with 196 stones representing the 196 countries of the world.
Also in The Hague you can discover the Chinese neighborhood. But make no mistake! Originally this neighborhood was known as the Hague Jewish Neighborhood but after World War II the neighborhood became vacant again.
Starting in the 1970s, the neighborhood was revitalized and a lot of Chinese moved in. They literally and figuratively breathed life back into the neighborhood. When you walk through this neighborhood, you will of course find many Chinese restaurants and shops. But also the Chinese gates – built with original building materials, attract many visitors, and rightly so!
8. Great Church
The ‘Grote Kerk’ of The Hague, also known as the ‘Sint Jacobskerk’. The church was completed mid 15th century as a typical hall church in the style of Brabant Gothic, making it one of the oldest buildings in the Netherlands. When you stand in front of the church, the hexagonal tower with carillon (51 bells) will immediately catch your eye. Inside you have a beautiful wooden vault, a pulpit from 1550 and a mausoleum of admiral Wassenaer Obdam.
Once Willem-Alexander was baptized here and several weddings took place but since the last restoration in 1987 the church has been used for many cultural events.
After a cultural tour of The Hague, it is time for relaxation. Madurodam is the Netherlands in miniature. Not only children but also adults are hard to get out of here. Who among the whole family can lift their own weight in cheese, control port traffic or generate wind power? The newest attraction is ‘The Flying Dutchman’ where you discover everything about the pioneers of the Netherlands.
Madurodam is the perfect combination of an amusement park, historical heritage and beautiful nature. There are over 5,500 miniature trees and 55,000 flowers that bloom throughout the season. Since its opening in 1952, it has been one of the most visited amusement parks in the Netherlands. An ideal outing for young and old!
10. The boulevard, the harbor and the pier in Scheveningen
Scheveningen is part of The Hague and is located by the sea. It is a wonderful place to get a breath of fresh air in the autumn, to walk in the winter, to catch the first rays of sunlight in the spring or to enjoy the beach and the many terraces in the summer. A beautiful place in the Netherlands that is a top destination for a vacation in the Netherlands during all seasons!
The pier is the landmark and the heart of Scheveningen. Here you can do all kinds of things like shopping and eating but also do something active and exciting like ziplining, bungee jumping from 60 meters high or take surfing lessons. A round in the Ferris wheel that offers you a magnificent view is of course also part of the package.
Food & drinks
Around the Pier you can enjoy the beach and the sea, especially when the sun is shining. From the Pier you can walk straight into a beach bar or terrace on the Boulevard. Almost every restaurant has a daily menu for a fixed price. If you like the menu, look no further because the restaurants almost all offer the same thing for the same price. If you just want to enjoy the nice weather, walk into one of the many bars on the beach and enjoy a wide range of delicious cocktails.
Do you like to get up early and wake up to a nice breeze? These hip bars also offer a full breakfast, both in a well-stocked burgundy way and in the trendy healthy way. Be sure to check it out!
The South Beach – The Harbour
The beach and boulevard of Scheveningen are very popular and busy in the summer. If you prefer to sit more at ease then go to the Zuiderstrand. This beach is located between Scheveningen and Kijkduin. The harbor of Scheveningen is a nice place to visit, especially on Sundays.
In the morning the fishermen go out to sea. On Friday is the return and then their catch is unloaded and sold. There are also many restaurants and terraces here and it is the place to book a cruise on the North Sea or a short tour through the harbor itself.