Information on our hometown The Hague
The Hague Travel Blog› entry 1 of 6 › view all entries
Since I've been on travbuddy I regular put pictures here but not of my hometown yet, so here are a few photo's of The Hague. From now on I wil keep this blog up to date, so you get an idea of The Hague.
The Hague or 's-Gravenhage is the third largest city in the Netherlands after Amsterdam and Rotterdam, with a population of 475,904 and an area of approximately 100 km². It is located in the west of the country, in the province of South Holland, of which it is also the provincial capital. The Hague is the home of the Eerste Kamer (first chamber, known in English as the Senate) and the Tweede Kamer (second chamber, known in English as the House of Representatives), respectively the upper and lower houses.
The Hague originated around 1230, when Floris the IV, count of Holland purchased land alongside a pond (now the Hofvijver) in order to build a hunting residence. In 1248 William the II, Count of Holland and Rex Romanorum, who was supposed to become Holy Roman Emperor decided to extend the residence to a palace. He died in 1256 before this palace was completed, but parts of it were finished by his son Floris V, of which the Ridderzaal (Knights' Hall), still extant, is the most prominent.
The international city of peace and justice contributes substantially to international politics: The Hague is home to over 150 international (legal) organisations. These include the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia(ICTY), the International Court of Justice(ICJ), the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda(ICTR) and the International Criminal Court(ICC).
The Hague has its share of museums and cultural institutions:
- Madurodam is a miniature city, containing hundreds of scale-models of Dutch landmarks in a typically Dutch miniature landscape.
- The Mauritshuis exhibits many paintings by Dutch masters, such as Johannes Vermeer, Rembrandt van Rijn and Paulus Potter.
- The Escher Museum is located in the former Royal Palace on the Lange Voorhout.
- The Haags Historisch museum showcases the history of the city from the Middle Ages to the present day.
- The Museum Bredius houses part of the collection of 19th century art historian Abraham Bredius, containing antique furniture, silverware and porcelain.
- Museum de Gevangenpoort (lit. the "Prison Gate") is a former prison housed in a 15th century gatehouse, with genuine mediaeval dungeons and torture chambers.
- The Gemeentemuseum (Municipal museum) is home to the world’s largest collection of works by the Dutch painter Piet Mondriaan as well as other modern art.
- The Museon is an interactive and historical science museum.
- The Omniversum is Europe’s first 360° IMAX-cinema.
- Panorama Mesdag houses a cylindrical 360° "panoramic" painting, 14 meters high by 120 meters long, depicting the sea-front at Scheveningen in the late 19th century, made by Hendrik Willem Mesdag. It is presented in such a way that it is almost as if one is looking at a real scene rather than a painting.
- The Museum voor Communicatie (formerly the "PTT Museum") is the national postal museum and houses interactive exhibits as well as one of the country’s best collections of stamps.
- The Louis Couperus Museum is devoted to the life and works of Louis Couperus (1863-1923).
- The museum Beelden aan Zee in Scheveningen has a large collection of sculptures, mainly from 20th century artists.
- The Koninklijke Schouwburg ("Royal Theatre"), located on the Korte Voorhout, is the home of the "Nationaal Toneel" ("National theatre-group").
- The Lucent Danstheater is home to the internationally celebrated Nederlands Dans Theatre, a modern dance company. The building was designed by the Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas in 1988. It shares a lobby with the Anton Philipszaal, home of the Residentie Orkest, the city's most important symphony orchestra.
Other tourist attractions and landmarks in The Hague include:
- The historic Binnenhof ("Inner Court") and Medieval Ridderzaal ("Knights' Hall"), which now contains the Houses of Parliament and government offices. A good view can be obtained from the leafy Lange Vijverberg on the other side of the adjacent lake called the "Hofvijver" (lit.
- The Lange Voorhout is a wide avenue containing many splendid houses (now home to several embassies) as well as The Hague's oldest and narrowest house and the famous "Hotel des Indes", the city’s most luxurious hotel.
- The "Passage" (pronounced as in French) was the Netherlands' first covered shopping mall. Dating from the late 19th century, it contains many expensive and speciality shops.
- The "Paleis Noordeinde" has been Queen Beatrix' official work-palace since 1984. It is closed to the public, but the Palace Gardens ("Paleistuin") are accessible to the public.
- The Clingendael Park is an old landed estate with a Japanese Garden. Nearby one can also find the home of the Clingendael Institute of International Relations.
- Queen Beatrix' residential Palace, "Paleis Huis ten Bosch", can be found a little outside the city in the "Haagse Bosch" forest.
Public transport in The Hague consists of a sizeable number of tram and bus routes. There are two main train stations in The Hague: Den Haag Hollands Spoor (HS) and Den Haag Centraal Station (CS). The nearest airport to The Hague is Rotterdam Airport. It is, however, not easily reachable by public transport. With several direct trains per hour from the railway stations Hollands Spoor and Centraal, Amsterdam Schiphol Airport is more frequently used by people travelling to and from The Hague by air.
Ok, enough information for now. Hope you enjoy the photo's and in the near future I'll put some more pictures here of the city!!