Welcome to the Netherlands and exactly to the Hague (Den Haag), the Dutch seat of government.
The weather was amazing and Medjy and I had a quick visit around the Peace Palace, before heading to Zaanse Schans and enjoying a rural experience.
Den Haag is the administrative capital of the Netherlands. In the 20th century it became the home of several international legal entities, including the UN’s International Court of Justice, the Permanent Court of Arbitration, the Hague Academy of International Law and the Peace Palace Library. Iconic structure of these legal institutions is the Peace Palace. Built between 1907 and 1913 (in Neo-Renaissance style) by French architect Louis Marie Cordonnier, this monument is one of the most popular of the Hague.
The Peace Palace (Vredespaleis in Dutch) – The Hague
The Peace Palace main entrance
If you plan to visit the inside of the Peace Palace, you need to book the guided tour in advance. This is the only way you can enter the building and see the various rooms inside. Outside the main gate is a visitor center, where you can have a free 30 minute audio guide (in many languages). This gives an overview of the history and role of the Peace palace. Medjy and I did the free audio tour and we were very satisfied of the service quality. The display area with multilingual headsets was very explicative and free of charge. The staff was very friendly, helpful and polite. I highly recommend it to all visitors to the Hague.
Close to the visitor center of the Peace Palace there is a granite sitting area which features the word ‘peace’ in all the languages of the United Nations Member States.
Vrede! Paix! Paz! Paqe! Aenomman! Dame! PEACE!
The peace bench was created by the artist Egbert Schuttert.
After resting a while on the peace bench we went to the shop for some souvenirs. In front of the main entrance we found a tree of peace, inspired by Yoko Ono’s Imagine Peace Tree. Wishes from all over the world were hanged on it. You can write your own message of peace and share it with the world.
Messages on the tree of peace
The Peace Palace is very easy to reach. Buses and trams run very regularly and take about 15 minutes from the main train station. You can go there:
– by foot from the center of The Hague;
– by bus (number 24 – terminus Kijkduin – Vredespaleis stop);
– by tram 1 (terminus Scheveningen Noorderstrand – Vredespaleis stop).
To book your guided visit of the Palace check this link www.vredespaleis.nl