There is no reason to be bored in Leiden. The city has a rich history, many museums, theatres and a cosy inner city where you can shop and eat in a relaxed fashion.
The inhabitants of Leiden are very proud about their history. In 1572 Leiden joined the Dutch revolt against the Spaniards and the city was consequently under siege. The people of Leiden fought back and repulsed the siege. The revolt was so strong that the Spaniards fled on October 3 1574. This occasion is celebrated every year with a big party called “Leiden Ontzet” or the “Relief of Leiden”. The inner city is full of raised stages, market stalls, eateries and the atmosphere is fun. There is also a large fairground during this event. Certainly worth visiting!
The city has the Netherlands’ oldest university. As gratitude for chasing away the Spaniards the city received the University of Leiden from William of Orange. This university is and remains one of the most import universities of Europe.
Open Air Museum and museums
Leiden has many museums, the city itself is one big open air museum. With its 2,800 monuments you can appreciate the beauty of the city by taking a walk through its streets. Take a glance at the Hooglandse Kerk, the Leiden hofjes or inner courtyards, the Marekerk, De Valk windmill and the Zijlpoort. Would you prefer to visit an exhibition or enjoy the mechanics of the human body? Then you can visit, for example, the National Museum of Ethnology, the National Archaeological Museum, Corpus ‘travel through the human body’ and Naturalis Biodiversity Center. Something for everyone!
Leiden is a real cultural city. What else can you expect from a city that has the oldest theatre (‘schouwburg”) in the Netherlands. The outside of the Leidse Schouwburg building is a treat in itself. Inside it offers a varied programme of dance, theatre, music and cabaret. Visit, for example, the annual Leids Cabaret Festival. In addition you can also enjoy performances from different artists in the Stadsgehoorzaal. The acoustics in this theatre are exceptional.
Cosy inner city
With its many restaurants, cosy cafes, discotheques and cinemas it is not difficult to have a fun day in Leiden. In the inner city there are various tasty culinary restaurants and bars along the canals. You can enjoy a sniff of culture or go shopping in the nearby shopping street. Or just enjoy a tasty lunch or a drink! You can review the floor plan of Leiden here.
Take a look at what there is to do in Leiden by visiting the site Visit Leiden.