Travel Guides: Hague


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Hague is the seat of government of the Netherlands. It is located in the province of South Holland (Zuid-Holland), in the West and it is its residence. Hague is the seat of Dutch government de facto, but not the Dutch capital, Amsterdam being the municipality constitutionally designated with this role. Hague is the seat of the upper chambers (Eerste Kamer) and lower chambers (Tweede Kamer) of the Dutch Parliament (Staten-Generaal). Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands has the residence and the working office in Hague, and all foreign embassies are located here.

Also in Hagues are located the Supreme Court (Hoge Raad der Nederlanden) and the Council of State (Raad van State). The official name is ‘s-Gravenhage, which means “fold count.” This refers to the early settlement, which was originally the residence of the hunting Dutch Counts. After the Napoleonic occupation, there is no longer an administrative distinction between village and city administration, so today Hague is a commune.

In the history Hague, the judiciary has always played an important role. After the fourteenth century, were transferred to Hague supreme courts of the provinces of Zeeland and Holland, and the importance of the village began to grow. At the end of the XVI century, the royal court moved here after Maurice of Nassau chose Hague as a residence. This example was followed by the government of Delft. In the seventeenth century, while continually found new colonies, Netherlands, the country was ruled by an iron fist. Between 1584 and 1795 Hague representatives have held discussions over Dutch provinces, which have ushered in the parliament even today.

Hague did not have, before, the status of city (hence the nickname “the largest village in Europe”), for this reason it is not surrounded by walls. Hague became a city in 1795, for a short time, in 1798 only in terms of administrative policy. Hague did not have time to build the city walls. Keys of the city were hastily made by a silversmith, being used only twice. They have disappeared during the Second World War. The Peace Conferences of 1899 and 1907, concluded with the Hague Agreement on the regulation of land wars, the settlement gave an international significance.

The material legacy left by these events is the Peace Palace, built in Gothic style between 1907 and 1913, thanks to contributions and donations from around the world. Since 1922, this building is the headquarters of the International Court of Justice. This judicial body, composed of 15 judges, has renewed its activity after the Second World War, becoming the supreme court of justice of the United Nations. Hague is divided administratively into eight districts (stadsdelen). Unlike Amsterdam and Rotterdam, they were not with a political role, having a separate board.

Binnenhof, Hague

The village plays an important role in international politics. Here are located more than 150 international organizations. The main institutions are: Eurojust, the body of the prosecutors of the Member States of the EU; Europol, the European Police Office; International Court of Justice; International Criminal Court; International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia; Permanent Court of Arbitration. The glory of the village of Hague was between XVI and XVII centuries. From that period date many churches (such as the Nieuwe Kerk) and residencies, including the Huis ten Bosch Palace (Royal residence) and the Mauritshuis.

Also in that time, the village became an important center of portraiture and landscape, and the typography of engraving, sculpture and craft of the goldsmith. These artistic traditions were continued in the nineteenth century with the so-called Hague School and Kunstkring Haagsche, an artistic medium Symbolist. Two of the main monuments of the village stand side by side: the parliament building and the Mauritshuis Museum, Binnenhof; Escher Museum, a museum dedicated to Maurits Cornelis Escher’s; Madurodam; Mauritshuis. In terms of international legal arbitration, Hague is a crucial point beyond any doubt, here, that the city is called the Legal Capital of the World. Hague managed to gather a certain amount of tourists in capital, and that it is able to turn its fame into a political and legal tourist curiosity, that is the third largest city in the Netherlands, is the most popular beach resort that maritime throughout the country, is the greenest city in comparison with Amsterdam and Rotterdam, and also full of museums, galleries and other important landmarks.

The origins of Hague are due sometime around the beginning of the thirteenth century, but managed just over six centuries to become a city within the meaning of the word, since, if Hague would be granted the right to appoint the city earlier time than would have been more difficult to control. World War proved to be a fateful moment for Hague, since the bombing destroyed much of the city’s architectural heritage. In any case, Hague has recovered quickly, and a new era began. Apart from being a permanent resident where operate many officials in, the city has the ability to cover the accommodation needed for tourists.


Usually, accommodation is not problematic, since all sorts of establishments, ranging from campsites and cheap hotels in the most exquisite and expensive hotels are available in town. The picture is that of a city that knows how to greet visitors in terms of accommodation, regardless of their financial possibilities. Hague does not excel in a wide range of local delights. On the contrary, it is famous for international cuisine that is represented here by the many eating places that have developed as a result of the strong influences of the immigrants and tourists. The most notable of all is the Indonesian cuisine, appreciated both by locals and visitors, but also an alternative to Indian food is as inspired as the first.

However, some specialties of the region can be tried in Hague, of which Hollandse Nieuwe (brine herring) is an imperative Gourmet. The Museum of History in Hague, Municipal Museum, Museum Paleis, Muzel National Post and statues Sea Museum, Gallery Mauritshuis, The Hague and Prison Gate Museum are some of the many attractions of the place talking about past history, the contribution of artists called heritage cultural city and its values that it believes to be most of Hague. Binnenhof, Noordeinde Palace, the Palace of Peace and Madurodam complete the picture of sightseeing in Hague.

The Hague Jazz Festival is an event that deserves to participate in, and KoninginneNach, a major series of events held before the Day of Queen Beatrix. Jazz in de Gracht and North Sea Jazz Festival are two other musical events hosted by the city in July. But an event such as the Tong Tong Festival is defined totally different stressing the importance of Indonesian culture, being one of the biggest festivals across Europe Eurasian. The Festival and Bazaar Hindustani Schilderswijk Milan can be considered as events rounding out the lively atmosphere of Hague.

Previously called the Gibraltar of the North, Luxembourg is the place to meet French and German cultures, a status that the city has always known how to embrace it. Just imagine what this means in terms of cuisine: vigor and sophistication at the same time in a single specialty Luxembourg. Metz is a great destination in terms of tourism and gastronomy. Also, Metz is a place of intersection of France and Germany although administratively speaking, it takes the first. In short, Metz invites tourists to follow in the footsteps of both Rabelais and Verlaine. Place of incredible cultural frenzy, Strasbourg is a mandatory stop in Alsace and the city as stated, with Metz, that expression of a meeting between French and German culture.

This is particularly true in the kitchen and Strasbourg, which is not an issue to be neglected. The capital of the Netherlands, Amsterdam was once a top tourist destination. Attractions range from its objectives rather controversial – such as Red Light District and cafes where cannabis can be consumed – sightseeing opportunities. Just not for nothing that Amsterdam is called the Venice of the North. In the center of Hague center are some nice government buildings, mansions state (belonging to ambassadors and embassies) and good museums (Mauritshuis, Panorama Mesdag) belonging to the Amsterdam and Rotterdam.

A beautiful day deserves to be spent in the beach resort of Scheveningen, which actually is part of the city. With a promenade and a casino is one of the most elegant resorts in the Netherlands. In Hague are many international organizations such as the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) International Criminal Court (ICC) and the International Court of Justice (ICJ), all associated with the United Nations.

In terms of tourism the town is a bit different from the Dutch capital, Amsterdam; you will not find a center full of red lanterns and coffee-shops, instead you can find a square with cafes (Plein), more recently there has been established several ministries. In the midst of the squares is the statue of William the Silent, leader of 80 years revolt against Spain, after which the Netherlands obtained independence in 1648. Here is found the Mauritshuis Museum (Royal Gallery of paintings) and Binnenhof (Dutch parliament building since 1446).

Public transportation is quite expensive. Thrill fans can try bungee jumping off a crane installed on the tower on Pier Scheveningen (Scheveningen Dana) and for those quieter from here you can admire the view from above the water. Very interesting in the Netherlands is the paving of city centers – you can not really tell if you’re on the road or on the sidewalk.11

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One Response to Travel Guides: Hague

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