Can you say ‘Scheveningen?’ Probably not. Whether you can pronounce the name of The Hague’s famous beach or not, when traveling the Netherlands, you should definitely take a look!
Scheveningen used to be the place to be during my childhood and teenage years. Although we hardly went during the summer, my memories of The Hague’s famous backyard are joyous still. Last week, on a very, very cold day, I went to see if old love dies. Of course it doesn’t!
Because of a storm we had a few days earlier, a lot of ‘sea life’ washed up on the shore. A banquet for seagulls and loads of photo opportunities for locals. Scroll down to the bottom of this article to check out the photos I made.
But first, let’s talk beach!
Scheveningen is about 3km long and consists of a north and south beach. Right in front of the boulevard (and next to the pier) you’ll find the popular north beach, which is usually packed in summer. For peaceful sunbathing you go to the south side, on the other side of the harbor.
But that’s not all. During the summer you’ll find over 50 beach bars and restaurants as well as shops, hotels and ice cream parlors. Events like concerts and festivals (such as the famous fireworks festival) are also held in Scheveningen.
Scheveningen isn’t just for sun lovers. The many restaurants and bars on the boulevard and pier, as well as beach bars in summer, offer you a great place to sit down and relax. On the boulevard you’ll see people roller-skating, people watching or… catching Pokémon.
Unfortunately a large part of the boulevard looks like it’s from an 80’s sitcom: cheap signs, ditto clothes. You can tell The Hague is trying to clean up, especially around the pier, where food stands have comfortably settled to feed the hungry crowds. It is, in my opinion the only down fall to a beach day in Scheveningen as the beach is still incredibly wide and beautiful.
Here are some of the top things to do in Scheveningen:
- Take a ride in the ferris wheel on the pier for amazing views over Scheveningen and The Hague.
- Sleep above the sea at the beautiful Pier Suites.
- Take a stroll on the boulevard.
- Go see a movie at Pathe cinema.
- Face your fears and bungee jump off the pier.
- Have a bite at Pickles Burgers.
- See a musical at Circus Theater Scheveningen.
- Enjoy the fireworks festival.
- Eat the freshest fish at Simonis.
- Take a stroll through the dunes at Oostduinpark or Meijendel.
- Learn how to surf.
- Visit the history museum ‘Muzee Scheveningen’.
- Check out the Netherlands in miniature at Madurodam.
- Learn about sea life at… Sea Life.
When to visit Scheveningen (and how)
Whenever you want! As I’ve mentioned before, Scheveningen (and especially the north beach) is packed in summer. Go during any other season for a practically empty beach.
Take bus 22 or 23 or tram 59 from The Hague central station to ‘Scheveningen Noorderstrand’ or get on the famous tram 1 departing from ‘Spui’. Get out at ‘Kurhaus’ to get to the boulevard straight away or sit tight for one more stop (‘Zwarte Pad’) for quick access to the dunes.
Where to sleep
Because my lovely country is so small, Scheveningen can also be done from major cities like Amsterdam or Rotterdam as day trip. Hopping on a train is all it takes! If you want to spend more time on the beach, these are some great hotels to stay at.*
What’s your favorite thing to do in Scheveningen?
*I used affiliate links for these hotel pages, which means I get a small fee if you book through these links. As always, my opinions are of my own. Booking through these links will cost you nothing extra but will help me to bring you more travel stories.