For centuries the political centre of the Netherlands has been in the Hague: you may spot our politicians and journalists who are waiting to hear them out on weekdays near the Binnenhof. The International Court of Justice, the so-called Peace Palace, tries to sort disputes between countries. The Hague is called International City of Peace and justice because of its numerous international organisations.
It is a royal city as well: our king William Alexander lives and works in the Hague. The city centre is a rich city; the glamorous past and present of diplomats is reflected in its architecture. By the way: I can show you around in the Mauritshuis, the beautiful 17th century small museum where you can meet the ‘Girl with the pearl earring’ from Vermeer.
According to your wishes we can emphasize a theme like: royal/history, politics and history, International city of peace and justice or architecture. And of course I’ll give you the best local tips!
The Hague – Scheveningen – By bike
The Hague city centre and its green parks, China town, beaches and dunes are close by and can be admired during a bicycle tour: the old harbour of Scheveningen is bustling with restaurants, the old fishermen’s village is still there and a beautiful boulevard lines the long, white sandy beach. The Kurhaus, nowadays luxury hotel, reflects the end of the 19th century splendour. Via international organisations such as the International Court of Justice we will return in the city centre.
If you wish to extend the contemplation of this coastal fishermen’s village, visit with me Panorama Mesdag, a huge cilindrical painting from the late 19th century! Ask me prior to your visit for details on price and time schedule.
The Hague – International City of Peace and justice – By bike
The Hague counts numerous international organisations such as the International Court of Justice, the International Criminal Court and Europol. The international role The Hague plays in this field has gradually grown. The first success was a conference on international private law in 1893, an initiative taken by Tobias Asser, the Dutch Nobel Peace Prize winner. More conferences were to follow such as the first international peace conference in 1899, not in the least because of the Dutch talent for organizing well such conferences. Bring your bike and we can pass by a large number of the international legal institutions.
The Hague – History and Politics – Walk
Amsterdam is our national capital but strangely enough national government and parliament are not located in Amsterdam but in the Hague. To explain this we have to look at our history: for centuries the Hague has served as political centre. And it wasn’t untill much later that Amsterdam became capital.
During this tour you will hear more about our political system, the large number of political parties and the role of our King. We will pass by the Palace in which he works as well as some of the government buildings.
The Hague – Architecture – Walk
The Hague shows a great variety in architectural styles. We will emphasize more on these styles during this walk. A guided walk will pass by renaissance, Dutch classicist, ecclectic, art nouveau, the Hague school and more modern, contemporary styles. The Hague has never been enclosed by walls and therefore shows a more broad town plan. It is a very green city dotted with numerous parks, which add to the relaxed atmosphere.
If you are one or more families with children I would love to take you on our special family guided walk in The Hague. I make sure the kids fill literally “a small bag full of stories” in order to get the family reward in the end of the tour! Every joining family gets one family reward: Please ask us for the price of the reward of the day and tell us how many families will join your tour. (Age range children: 5-13)