A Day at the Beach in Den Haag

Scheveningen Travel Blog

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Pier with the Bungy Jump at Scheveningen

On to the seaside resort neighborhood of Scheveningen, via the tram where Rudolph taught us how to use strippenkaarten - a strip card you use to get around by bus or tram in the Netherlands.  You can pay cash when you jump aboard local transportation, but it is a lot cheaper to buy a 15 or 45 strip card at the neighborhood convenience market.  A neat feature is that I could use the same card for both Kim and myself, the confusing part is that you need to know how many zones you are crossing (but you can just ask the driver after sharing your destination).


At Scheveningen (I used the mnemonic “shave a ninja” to pronounce it), Rudolph introduced us by pointing out the grand Kurhaus, a massive hotel opened in the nineteenth century.

The Scheveningen pier viewed from the dunes
  The Kurhaus was originally a seaside health spa (Rudolph supplied the obvious translation as ‘the cure house’) that almost succumbed to the wrecking ball in the 1970’s.  Although it dominates the view, Rudolph pointed out the countless high rises built to accommodate beach tourists which had completely blighted views of the ocean.


On foot we trekked much of the pier towards the dunes and views of defense bunkers built by occupying German forces during WWII.  Our tour guide (lol) went on to explain how the dunes supply Den Haag with a high-quality, natural supply of filtered water.  From the dunes we rode the tram to the other end of the waterfront to check out the kite surfers and lighthouse of Scheveningen and then walked about the inner harbors before the long tram ride back to Rudolph’s home.


Here we met Rudolph’s charming wife Jacomien, who was busy in the kitchen preparing a fabulous meal for us.  Kim joined Jacomien in the kitchen while I received an in-depth introduction to Dutch politics as the election for their EU representative was this week.

Kite surfers at Scheveningen. In the background are the red and blue lightbeacons Rudolph captured in some wild breaking waves.
  Holy confusion, Bat Man - though confessing to not being enamored of our two-party system in the US, it certainly isn’t as overwhelming as a 17-party system!


Dinner featured rijsttafel, Indonesian cuisine with a Dutch twist.  Realize I do terrible injustice by trying to describe this, but it was something like a buffet, with a big bowl of rice surrounded by tons of separate dishes: spicy green beans, tofu, meat balls, freshly pickled cucumbers, prawn chips and tiny shrimp with lettuce were just a few.  Candle powered heating plates were laid out to warm most of the dishes and you placed a portion of whichever you liked beside your rice and perhaps added some of the seasoning sauce (phonetically ‘sambal’, please forgive the spelling) and enjoyed.  The only caveat was that you are not supposed to mix things together, which diminishes the flavor of each dish.  It was a terrific meal savored over more conversation.


Kim and Jacomien had much in common: both with Friesland ancestry and a love of sunflowers among other things.  Rudolph and I had to fall back on a sick sense of humor, lol.  It was a very pleasant evening and I was touched that our hosts went out of their way to conclude with a dessert I could enjoy – light ice cream and fruit…I usually sit on the sidelines during this course.  Kim received a cool gift as well – Rudolph had helped her identify a treat a friend wanted us to bring back (Haagse Hopjes), and they presented Kim with a couple bags so we wouldn’t have to go searching.  A relaxed ending to our splendid day in Den Haag, which will be treasured always…thank you Rudolph and Jacomien!!!

vances says:
Say hello to Rudolph (Sweetski) for me when you go to Scheveningen, Annemiek!
Posted on: Oct 11, 2009
maannisa says:
When the weather is nice and the sun is shining I am going to Scheveningen and lay on the beach .... its wonderfull there!!!
Posted on: Oct 11, 2009
row-zzzzz says:
I'm enjoying this tour through you!
Posted on: Aug 01, 2009
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Pier with the Bungy Jump at Schev…
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Scheveningen Lighthouse
Scheveningen Lighthouse
One of three inner harbors at Sche…
One of three inner harbors at Sch…
photo by: EmyG