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The Hague Part 2

Touristic Activities Inside the Town

sunny 21 °C

I will talk about some of the more touristic activity in this entry.

To start things off, this is the Binnenhof (inner court) where almost all the important decision get made.
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The Binnenhof is right at the heart of the city center and has been the political power of the lower countries for many centuries. Prodemos organizes free tours of this area. They do not operate daily so you might want to check with the visitor center before trying to gain entry into the parliament. This short tour is worth it if you would like to gain a more in depth understanding of Dutch politics, visit the house of the representative, climb some ancient stairs to see the hall of the knights and view some old treasures plus the king's throne. Fun fact: Binnenhof is the oldest House of Parliament in the world that is still in use.

This is one of the entrance into the area
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The square is open to the public
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This is the hall of the knights
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This gold neogothic fountain dates from the 1600.
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Inside the hall of the knights, where you can also spot a rather unassuming throne
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No funny business because the eye is watching you
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After I got cleared by security, I see a more modern pantheon of recent greats immortalized by their sculpts. large_DSC00108.jpg
This facility is a nice mix of the old and new architecture large_DSC00109.jpg

One of the things that I like about the Dutch is their very unassuming politics, somehow it feels that they have inherited the principate style from the early Roman empire where the ruler is simply the "first among equal" of the citizens. if you look at the sitting style of the hall of the knights and then look at the prime minister's office and the king's residence, it gives out the vibe that they are simply one of us, just another ordinary citizen.

This is the prime minister's office, a small little tower. This is the opposite of so many prime minister's offices that were simply mansions or huge palaces.
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The royal family residence looks like just another functional mansion, none of the extra lavish bling.
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Of course, the Hague is not just about political buildings, there is a fancy shopping street near the Binnenhof that has plenty of premium goods if you are into splurging.
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Besides the fancy shopping area, there are also other shops on the street to feed everyone's consumerism.
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And there's always a china town everywhere I go. Gosh, we are resilient.
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This is the main visitor center situated at the city hall which is packed full of helpful staff and information (and quite close by to the aforementioned shopping streets)
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Most of the time, there will be some sort of exhibition inside the building and on some rarer cases, activities going on at city square.

Entrance to city hall
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I was lucky to be able to see some exciting free style competition while I was there
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I will end this entry with the Grote Kerk of St James, like the Binnenhof, this church is one of the oldest building in The Hague. If you are a fan of church architecture, you will be able to see some very old stained glass, old wooden carved pulpit from the 1500s, interesting sepulchral monuments, and some escutcheons of the knights of the Golden Fleece, There is also the occasional free concert inside the church that gives a good music experience as well.

Some of the stained glass (note that extensive renovation has been done and now, the church has a finely vaulted interior.)
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Picture of the organ
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Stumbled into a free 2 hours concert that really made my day.
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A few more spotlight on The Hague in the next entry before moving on to another city. Until next time.

Posted by canglingy 04:18 Archived in Netherlands Tagged churches buildings history museum sightseeing travelling

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