Just like yesterday, we started the day early today to take a trip outside Rotterdam. We boarded a metro train bounded for the Hague.
The Hague is the seat of government of the Netherlands. The monarchy, parliament, ministers, and embassies are all located in the Hague. Amsterdam is the capital written in law, but the Hague is where politics actually happens.
As I walked around in the Hague, I saw several Dutch politicians in the Binnenhof, the parliament building. I saw the minister of climate, minister of finance, and even got a glimpse of the prime minister.
The cityscape of the Hague is marked by older buildings in the city center with several tall skyscrapers. These skyscrapers are all government buildings. However, the Hague lacks the canals that are seen as a feature is typical Dutch cities, as the Hague is located directly on the North Sea.
I then went into an art museum in the Hague. In the museum, I saw numerous paintings, including the famous Girl with the Pearl Earring by Johannes Vermeer. Many of the Dutch paintings were medium sized and incorporated Dutch landscapes into them.
After visiting the art museum, we left the Hague via a train to head to Amsterdam. Amsterdam is the capital of the Netherlands by law, and is the largest city in the Netherlands.
Amsterdam was a large city with similar buildings as Delft, but up-scaled. There is also a network of canals and bridges. And as Amsterdam is the largest city, it is only natural for Amsterdam to be extremely busy.
There were several large plazas in Amsterdam. One of them is in front of the royal palace, the reason why Amsterdam is the capital of the Netherlands. During Napoleon’s occupation of the Netherlands, the prince chose Amsterdam as the capital rather than the Hague, and the capital hasn’t been changed since.
Amsterdam also has the Anne Frank house, where Anne Frank was hidden from the German forces until she was betrayed and sent to a camp to die.
When walking around Amsterdam, I noticed just how lively it was. There were many shops, cafes, and restaurants. I even saw the Melkweg, one of the most famous clubs and concert venues in the Netherlands.
Today was a neat day exploring cities in the Netherlands.
– Dylan Vergara