Looking for ways to keep kids entertained in the cold winter months? There is a treasure trove of wonderful, warm museums in The Hague just waiting to be explored.
No matter whether your children are young, teenagers or somewhere in between, there is sure to be one that appeals to their interests in The Hague. Particularly for expat children, a visit to a museum can create more of an understanding of the history and culture of the place they now live. Most have activities or exhibits designed specifically for children.
Here’s our pick of a few of the many museums you can spend a fun few hours with your kids.
Recently reopened after extensive refurbishments, The Girl with the Pearl Earring is the most famous resident here. On the last Sunday of every month, it’s family day where special workshops, tours and activities are organised. For children from 4 years old, the Mauritshuis is developing a family activity packet. For teenagers from 13 years old, there is the Golden Tour – download the free app on your own smartphone (or hire one for €3.50) and see the paintings of the Golden Age from a totally new perspective.
- Gemeente Museum
The lower level has been transformed into the Wonderkamers exhibition, which was especially designed for visitors from 10-18 years old, (though can also be enjoyed by younger children). An impressive miniature museum stands as the centrepiece and there is a magical maze of rooms to explore, each with different themes and activities. An interactive iPad adventure is available for free.
A special exhibition, Working For Peace – Give Peace A Chance, runs until 2 November, developed in conjunction with several of the surrounding organisations such as Europol, OPCW and the Peace Palace. Children (and adults) and learn more about the processes behind the City of Peace and Justice.
- Haags Historisch Museum
The perfect place to learn more about the history of The Hague, this museum has a number of temporary and permanent exhibits which children may enjoy. The beautiful dolls house, built in 1910 is likely to be a favourite. On weekends, the Salon hosts activities for families to explore what life was like in 1900.
- Escher in het Paleis
Artist M.C. Escher is world famous for his uniquely creative and mind-bending work. Little ones may not yet appreciate the detail in the artwork, and but older children are bound to be fascinated by how Escher turned fish into birds and twisted reality.
The price of entry to museums varies and we suggest you check the websites for full information. You may like to consider purchasing a “Museum Kaart” (Card), which is an annual pass to the majority of museums in The Netherlands for a fixed price of 54.95 for adults and 27.50 for children. Many museums offer these for sale at their ticket counters, or you can buy one online at www.museumkaart.nl. Depending on the age of your children, do check the individual museums websites first as many offer free entry under a certain age.
Renée Veldman-Tentori is a Dutch Australian with a keen interest in photography, culture and museums. She loves exploring The Hague and surrounds with her husband and two daughters, Sophia (7) and Isabella (5). For more ideas and inspiration on what to do in The Netherlands, visit her blogs www.dutchaustralian.com and www.cultureandkids.com
This article was published in the winter edition of the Feel At Home in The Hague magazine, published by www.thehagueonline.com