Den Haag Tower, Scheveningen Beach, and the Vegetarian Butcher.
After having an excellent time in Amsterdam it was time to see more of the Netherlands. We booked an Easy Hotel in the Hague or Den Haag if you will.
While the Easy Hotel is 'Easy', It wasn't our favourite place to stay. For one, you had to pay extra for EVERYTHING. Do you want internet, TV, extra towels, extra pillows, earlier check in, coffee, tea, hair dryer, etc. It's all with an extra fee per day. (Which would be good for some, for ex: If you basically just need a place to crash for the night.) But when you are on holiday and spending time at the hotel or researching places to go, it's not the best option. Also, the bathroom walls were just glass. You could see and hear everything someone was doing in the bathroom.
When we asked for directions to the train station from our Easy hotel in Amsterdam they told us walk to a bus, then take the bus to a tram, and ride the tram to Amsterdam Station Zuid. It sounded a bit complicated so we double checked on google maps when we found wifi and found that we could just walk to Amsterdam Station RAI in 15 minutes.
The train in The Netherlands is super easy to use. It is very clear at the stations which train, and it lists all their destinations. We were a little confused with buying tickets from a machine (Which only takes card) Some stations have customer service desks where you can pay for tickets in cash though! Link to Train lines in The Netherlands here: http://travel.thetrainline-europe.com/netherlands-trains/
Despite the fact that none of us were able to correctly pronounce Den Haag when we asked for help. The guy at the train figured out what we were trying to say and directed us to the automated machines. The train only took about an hour.
We made a vlog of the Hague. We were lucky enough to see the Hague with incredibly great weather.
We arrived in Den Haag and managed to find a map of the city and then located ourselves and our Easy Hotel. Our hotel was pretty close by since city centre Den Haag is not very big.
The weather was stunning. Too warm to be wearing a winter coat.
We went past some museums, the US embassy and the French embassy on our way to the Easy Hotel.
We found our Easy Hotel without a problem and the front desk seemed to be amused when we told them that we had just stayed at an Easy Hotel in Amsterdam.
We dropped our stuff off and then explored the neighbourhood.
This church was next to our hotel.
We found a health food store that had some vegan food.
We took a chance on these rolls filled with seaweed but they were pretty disgusting. haha. The cookies were not bad but I think they had parchment paper stuck to the bottom of them.
There was a cous cous or quinoa salad that we probably should have tried over those seaweed rolls.
They offered free tea.
It is hard to tell but these are cauliflower fritters. They were good and definitely the best thing that we bought to eat there and we got free tea!
We carried on walking down the street exploring. We did almost no research on the Hague which can be fun to do because everything is a surprise.
Dutch streets are difficult to pronounce.
There was a fair going on because we showed up around Liberation Day or Bevrijdingsdag.
We went inside Binnenhof which is the Dutch parliament.
All the sights were well labelled in Den Haag. We almost didn't need a map.
The skyline looks pretty unique.
There is a lot of outside seating everywhere with people enjoying the weather.
The main plan of our walk was to make our way to the Vegetarian Butcher to get something to eat since the food we got at the health food store wasn't very filling and wasn't that great honestly. We found De Vegetarische Slager with no problem.
They have lots of vegetarian/vegan versions of meat products. The idea is to appeal to people that want to eat the same sorts of meat based foods they used to eat pre vegetarian/vegan and they appear to be pretty successful so there must be a market for it. Not all of their stuff is vegan though which is too bad but they did have many vegan items.
They also carried various pantry items and sauces.
This is their frozen food section.
They had ready meals as they say in the UK. What's the Canadian equivalent of ready meal? TV dinner?
Butchers knives for cutting carrots and wheat meat.
We got a "chicken" wrap which was really good with vegan mayo, avocado and the "chicken" had a pretty unique smoky flavour to it.
We took a walk and found a vegetarian restaurant.
Vegetarian/Vegan restaurants are becoming so common that we can't afford to go to all of them so we settled for taking a picture of it. Besides we just ate.
We made out way to the tallest building in Den Haag which was pretty easy to find. The Hague Tower or Haagse Toren. We just had to look up in the sky.
We got tickets to go up the tower of course.
There was an observation deck to check out the city.
Our tickets up the tower came with a free drink. The drinks up the tower were so expensive though that it made it seem like a pretty good deal.
|Screwdriver with freshly squeezed orange juice.|
|Rum and coke with fancy bottled coca cola|
|Gin and Tonic with Hendricks Gin and Cucumbers.|
There was a restaurant up there as well. We didn't get anything to eat though.
We took a walk back towards the city centre through China Town.
We found the China Town gate.
We found the shopping area, Everything was closing down though since it was 5 or 6.
We went back to a vegetarian place we found near our hotel that had vegan options.
The food was great and good portions as well. That's a fried banana.
We called it a night and hung out in the easy hotel watching TV.
The next day we headed out to the Peace Palace.
There was a tree that people wrote messages of peace on outside of the peace palace.
Mrs. WLV basically hustled her Mom into walking to the Peace Palace by saying that it was only a 15 minute walk and then hustled her into walking to Scheveningen which is where the beach is by saying it is probably just another 15 minutes.
Luckily the walk was gorgeous.
We came really close to going into this place with little houses. You walk around and look at miniatures. Like a mini golf course without the mini golf. Well maybe there are better ways to describe it. It's a park with super detailed miniature buildings that you can look at. We decided against it because it was too crowded and there were tons of screaming babies.
We followed the canal towards the beach.
There were some people crossing the canal on this pull float.
We had walked for quite some time. A bit longer than 15 minutes.
We saw some animals in this random park.
We hit the beach and we were pleasantly surprised. This is not what we expected from the Netherlands. We should have worn shorts.
The beach promenade was very nice and the weather was perfect as you can see.
It ended up being pretty difficult to find anything vegan to eat in the restaurants along the promenade. A lot of places had vegetarian options but no vegan. This is often the case when you go to the waterfront of any place. We had similar trouble in Seattle and ended up getting Subway. The restaurants along the water were also really expensive. We did get some french fries at one place but they turned out to be the smallest portions ever. Damn you skinny Dutch people and your small portions. After a couple failures we found some strawberries.
We got a giant amount of strawberries and we mowed the strawberries pretty quickly.
We took a walk out of the Scheveningen Pier.
There was a food market inside but not much in the way of vegan food that I can remember.
We left the beach and went into the casino to get them to call us a taxi. We were a bit confused about the best way to get to a vegan restaurant we found online called Veggies on Fire so we decided taking a taxi was the best option.
We went into Veggies on Fire which was a fair sized place but was completely empty aside from two people. Despite how empty the restaurant was they told us they were all booked up for the night. Their website said walkins welcome so we were a bit surprised that they said they were fully booked. We asked if we could order some take away food from them but they said that this way not possible for some reason. Anyway, we asked if there was another vegan place they could suggest and they told us to go down the street to a Thai place that has vegan options.
We went to the thai place called Rakang Thai and it was really good. The food at the Thai place was probably better than Veggies on Fire anyway. Looking at Veggies on Fire the food looked pretty overpriced. The cheapest main was a Chipotle Burger for 16.50 Euros whereas Rakang Thai was cheap, delicious and had good portions.
We left the restaurant and headed back to the old Easy Hotel.
Check out this gas (petrol) station.
The walk back was pretty nice.
How close is our hotel from here? Oh it's probably about 15 minutes.
We headed back to the Easy Hotel and crashed. We were pretty exhausted from all the walking that we had done that day.
We woke up the next morning, got some coffee and then got some sandwiches from the Vegetarian Butcher again to take on the train with us. We took the train to the Amsterdam airport because for our final night we stayed in a hotel near the airport. The hotel had a shuttle bus for us to catch from the airport to the hotel.
On the way to the train station we saw this place that had signs saying vegan food but I think they failed vegan school because all their vegan stuff had eggs or milk in it. Don't worry we alerted the authorities (the vegan police) and the owners were arrested on the spot. ;)
We enjoyed our time in the Hague or Den Haag. It was beautiful. The Netherlands appears to be beautiful in general and very clean everywhere. Do Dutch people not litter or something? After all this travel we were ready to relax a bit on our last day. We made our way to Hoofddorp, near Amsterdam airport.