Leiden; where architecture meets modernism.
– By Kimberley Hoevers, Efficient Hotel Partner, 2 August 2017.
I am crazy about going on adventures. Even stepping into my front garden can be an adventure sometimes. Discovering the beauty of nature, of cities, of provinces in The Netherlands, I can’t get enough of it!
When I was a child, my parents took me on a holiday for the first time. We went to Spain by bus and ended up in Malgrat de Mar, Hotel Sorra Daurada Splash. From that moment, my whole life changed and I decided that I wanted to discover the world for the rest of my life.
Although I never really went far away, I was always searching for nice places near the house I lived with my parents in Houten, Utrecht. My passion for architecture and old buildings took me various times to the city centres of Barcelona, Girona and Berlin. With every trip, my passion for travel grew.
While my passion kept growing the money in my wallet literally flew out of it. I learned to live on a student loan and accepted that you can see a great deal of beauty even though you have less to spend. I decided to visit a city in The Netherlands that I hadne’t seen before. I poked a pin in the map of our small country and eventually ended up in Leiden.
Leiden is called city of discoveries. Why? There is a lot that can be discovered, seen and experienced. The city offers a rich history, various museums, theatres and a vibrant down town area. It is a place where you will never get bore and visiting Leiden is worth every minute of your stay.
When I visited Leiden, I was overwhelmed by the lively and energetic ambiance. Happy people everywhere with their big shopping bags, walking hand in hand, smiling and having fun. In every street, there are various restaurants to grab a bite or have a drink while chatting with your friends. Some examples of restaurants in the city of Leiden are: Shabu Shabu, La Cubanita and Restaurant Burgerzaken. They day of my visit to Leiden the sun was shining continuously and my mood became more positive and better moment by moment.
I decided to visit Naturalis Biodiversity Center, famous due to their exhibition of the remains of the great Tyrannosaurus Rex. Antiquities have always interested me. I once visited Egypt and went to the pyramids of Cairo and the statue of the Sphinx. I completely fell in love with what I saw that day, the ambiance, the view, the feeling, the journey back to the past, I just could not believe that it was all real. I thought I was dreaming. That same day I also visited the Ancient Egypt Museum with remains of the Tutankhamun era. I came face to face with mummies of secular apes and crocodiles, golden toys of Tutankhamun, his crypt. It was so overwhelming and almost unreal.
From that day, I knew for sure the antiquity interested me more than I could ever imagine. That is why I choose to visit Naturalis Biodiversity Center during my stay in Leiden. Naturalis took me back to the centuries when dinosaurs were keeping each other as pets, while fighting for their lives and fighting to survive. It was crazy to try to understand how life was during those days and how the surroundings must have been, how different life was back then. My visit at Naturalis touched all my senses and took me on a journey to somewhere far away. It was a mysterious place to visit and it is definitely worth it if you are also crazy about history
and living creatures from the past.
In order to stay in the theme of the day, I went to The Rijksmuseum van Oudheden (Royal Museum of Antiques). The Rijksmuseum van Oudheden is the national archaeological museum of The Netherlands. It is located in the city of Leiden. The museum grew out of its collection at Leiden University and still closely co-operates with its Faculty of Archaeology. I visited the exhibition of Queens of the Nile River. I entered an exposition with statues and paintings of Nefertari, Hatjepsoet, Teje en Nefertiti. It was amazing and reminded me of my holiday in Egypt. It felt good to be ‘back’. This exhibition was worth a visit.
Time flew by quickly and before I knew it, evening fell and I had to find a place to have dinner. I stumbled upon a charming building where an intimate restaurant was housed. The restaurant, called: Pakhuis, became my favourite right away and I decided to enjoy my meal here. It was the icing on a cake to a wonderful day in Leiden. The dinner was delicious and for me, as a student, it was also affordable. I ended my culinary food trip with a lovely dessert and decided to home again, back to Houten, the place I still love to come back home to.
Did my blog touch your senses? Are you interested in what more this city has to offer? Do you want to travel to Leiden, or do you want to receive more information about the possibilities regarding to a trip or stay in or to Leiden? Contact Efficient Hotel Partner.