A Blog by International Students at Leiden University
When most people think about studying at Leiden University, inevitably they envision the city of Leiden. Yet there are several studies based in The Hague. There are 17 studies, including my study – International Studies, and 5300 students. Whilst it’s not as big as the Leiden campuses it is no small number. Many of the studies here are in English or they’re partly in English. When I realised that my study would be based in The Hague, I worried I’d be missing out, but I found that I love studying in The Hague.
It’s the 3rd largest city in The Netherlands, but that doesn’t mean it’s overwhelming. I see it as the perfect ‘starter’ city. It’s no small town by any means, but it isn’t overwhelming. It’s big enough for me still to be finding small bits of the city that I haven’t truly seen or discovered but not so big that you’re lost or that things are too far away. Whilst it is a very modern city, there are places where the city’s 13th Century heritage peeks through and it really is beautiful. Not to mention it’s only a short train ride from Rotterdam, Amsterdam and, best of all, Leiden!
It’s also a really international place. Within the city there are apparently over 100 nationalities, no doubt aided by the fact that there are over 130 international companies, 115 embassies and important international institutions like the ICC and the ICJ. If you’re interested in politics The Hague is the place to be. Not only can you visit the Peace Palace and the ICJ, but these institutions also visit the campus in career events and some study associations arrange visits to embassies and these institutions. The Hague is also the centre of Dutch politics as the Dutch parliament buildings (Binnenhof) are based in The Hague, so if politics is your thing this really is the place to be.
Aside from all the study stuff, student life is also important. The Hague has great student life, there’s a number of bars, pubs and clubs. Most are located in the centre of the city and are a couple minutes bike ride or walk from one to the next. At the clubs and bars there’s usually some sort of event, depending on the day. I’ve learnt you don’t really have to be part of student associations to get in on the good nightlife, but it doesn’t hurt either. Aside from nightlife there are also some fun events on throughout the year, from food festivals to embassy festivals. There’s something for everyone!
Have you visited the Hague? Would you consider studying there?