A Blog by International Students at Leiden University
Next week, my 6th, and probably last, semester will begin at Leiden University. Chances are I will leave The Hague this summer to explore new places and to learn more at a new university. I wanted to think about the things I would miss about the city after I left so I could ensure I enjoy them to the fullest NOW. Five things came to my mind at first and naturally, there will be more than five things I will miss about The Hague when I leave, but I will only share these first thoughts with you as I feel they are most relevant to prospective and new students. This post is also for students who hesitate between Leiden and The Hague when they have to decide where to move. I know I do not regret living in The Hague because it has an international vibe Leiden does not have in my opinion.
Even back home during the Christmas holidays for a few weeks, I already missed it. Biking becomes a significant part of your life when you live in the Netherlands and it gives you this feeling of freedom that is so essential to our happiness! I have enjoyed biking here everyday to get to university but also to bike to another city on weekends. This has been a very cool way of visiting the country.
I have heard it is the biggest in Europe. Only a ten minutes walk away from my apartment, The Hague’s market is a weekly routine for me. You can buy pretty much anything there, but most importantly, food! I enjoy the atmosphere there and as you start making acquaintances, you will get even cheaper prices! This place is heaven for a student who loves food like me!
Although you get a 2 euros student discount at the cinema here, it is still so expensive, I find, for students to go to the movies except if you own the Pathé Unlimited Card. I love this because in countries where I have lived before this did not exist. There are two different cards. The first one costs 19 euros monthly and allows you to watch as many movies as you like but you still have to pay an extra fee when it’s a movie in 3D or IMAX and you get 10% discount on all the drinks and food. But the Unlimited Gold card (the one I have) is even better because you can really watch any movie without paying any extra fees and you get a 25% discount on the drinks and food. This is something I really enjoy about my life here, especially due to the weather. A movie is always the best on a rainy day 🙂
The really good thing about living in The Hague, that I only realized recently, is the fact that it has two very close airports with cheap flights. Schipol Amsterdam Airport has direct flights to many cities and has allowed me to travel anywhere whenever I wanted. This is often something you do not think about before moving to a new city but it is actually very important. In addition, when you are bored in The Hague on weekends, you can easily reach Amsterdam, Rotterdam or Leiden, and many other places, such as Brussels, even Paris or Hamburg. This is definitely something I should continue to enjoy in my last few months.
Of course, this list is very personal because these things will not apply to every kind of student. In my case, I am a food lover and thus eager to taste new food, especially when it is affordable! Social Deal has been helping with this and not only food wise as it offers all kinds of deals. Urban Sushi is for example one of my favourites! It sells amazing sushis, which are quite cheap thanks to Social Deal. I also enjoyed a really good other deal recently: 8 yoga classes for 20 euros! Check it out, it is worth it 😉
The list could go on for a long time… But these are some of the most practical things, yet so essential, that make your stay in a city enjoyable.