About two weeks ago, I had just under an hour to wander around Het Plein (The Square) in the Hague's old city centre. I was alone, exploring an interesting new place, with my camera and a little time to kill. This hardly ever happens. I'm usually either 1) Annoying everyone with me with perpetual photo taking 2) Worrying I'm annoying everyone with me 3) Experiencing emotional distress because I'm "missing" photo opportunities 4) In too much of a rush to even snap a photo. Photographers/bloggers/instagramers do you feel me?
Anyway, I'm grateful I had this opportunity, not only because it was a picturesque and crisp Autumn afternoon, but also (once again) the Hague captivated me. While Het Plein could not be more different from Scheveningen Beach in terms of physical surroundings, they both host an array of charming and (often extravagant) locations to eat and drink in a beautiful setting.
Het Plein is maybe a 10-minute walk from Den Haag Centraal. I wandered in from Korte Poten and passed at least 3 charming little cafes, but it was Coffee Company's gorgeous lighting,and over-sized leather furniture that lured me in. The service was friendly, the loose tea was quite good and it's an excellent spot to meet a friend or curl up with a nice book.
At the Plein, in addition to beautiful buildings like the Ministry of Defense and the Department of Justice, there are about 6 or 7 grand bars/restaurants. The seating spills out past the restaurants' terrace lines and into the Plein itself. This seating is very common in the Netherlands (especially mid-spring to early fall) but the inclusive and celebratory arrangement still makes me smile. A few places that caught my attention: Grand Café de Tijd, Barlow and Plein XIX, but given my time restrictions, I can only judge these establishments by their looks.
If you’re in the mood for a stroll amongst some very old and beautiful buildings, great window shopping and more restaurants than you would ever need to choose from, take an afternoon to enjoy Het Plein.