Downtime in Leiden

Downtime in Leiden

Hi there!

Thanks for popping in. This is a first! Don‘t recall ever blogging from my phone! Man lernt nie aus, as the Germans say!

We left Dusseldorf this morning and headed over the border into Holland. When we were in Delft in the summer, someone recommended Leiden. So here we are. Now I am telling you – it is beautiful! If you are looking for a picturesque, charming, walking town, with wonderful restaurants shops and boutique types galleries, then look no further.

Here is the perfect trip from England. Get the 11pm overnight ferry from Harwich to Hook van Holland. Treat yourself to a deluxe cabin and the a la carte Restaurant on the boat. Book a room at the Steenhof Suites bang in the centre of Leiden. Only about 40 minutes drive. Then reserve a table at a wonderful restaurant called The Bishop, by the church. Both Dave and I agreed it was probably  the best meal we had ever had. And not that expensive.

Go on a boat trip.

Visit some galleries

Cross ALL the bridges.

So many canals! And more bikes than I have ever seen!

Truly a fantastic find. The architecture is superb. The buildings are breathtaking.

Put it on your bucketlist. And use the Stenaline from Harwich ! We travelled that route every summer as kids with Mum and Dad, on our way to North Germany. The overnight cabin is super too.

Now the church bells are ringing, and I think we should turn in for the night .

I‘d try and add a photo, but I might be pushing my luck here on the phone!

Have you got a good mini break suggestion you‘d like to share? Come on! Don‘t keep it to yourself !

Love & Hugs




24 thoughts on “Downtime in Leiden

  1. I love bruge so many lovely lace shops chocolate shops and so many beautiful places to visit I cannot travel no more but my memories are always with me I went to Amsterdam visited Anne franks home a humbling experience I will never forget love and hugs to all onthe blog xxx

  2. Hope the nerves behaved themselves during the QVC show, we were rooting for you.
    Glad you are having some down time. Years ago we had a student from Holland staying with us. To thank us for looking after him, his dad invited us to stay for a few days and organised a few tours, and a friend took us up in a small plane. We saw Leiden from the air and were sorry we could not stay longer to see more.
    Perhaps you can show some photos when you return.
    Have a good night. xx

  3. I’ve been there!!! A long time ago mind you!! But it was a beautiful place then!
    Enjoy your break! You need it after last week!

  4. Sounds amazing. Glad you and Dave are having a break. We will be having a break in Rome soon but we will fly our 50th anniversary present from our kids. We did go to Paris quite a few years ago for a 4 day break, had a day and evening boat trip but we flew, very enjoyable. You both enjoy it .xxx

  5. Hi Barb,
    Holland is a lovely country. I remember going on a week’s trip there with the guides when I was about 14. We had a fantastic time visiting Delft, Kuekenhof Gardens, Scheveningen, The Hague and Amsterdam – it was the first time I had ever been abroad. I also like Belgium, particularly Bruges ,a lovely place for a weekend trip. I‘m pleased that you and Dave are having a good time – it will do you good. Love and hugs,Alison xxx

  6. Last time I was in Holland I was only 14. Went on a school cruise. I remember it well fabulous time. glad you getting some free time. Sounds great. Good name for the restaurant as well. xx

  7. Sounds a wonderful place have to look into it how wheelchair friendly is it !! Enjoy your mini break lots love have fun love Joy Katie xx

  8. Just got home from a few days in Brecon, attending a wedding. The autumnal colours were awesome, so we’re thinking of a short break next year. Also Northumberland is beautiful. Abroad I love Rome. It all depends on the monthly Premium Bond pay out really. 🤑Sounds like Germany might have to be investigated though. Sounds idillic. I’ve never been.
    The news just did an interesting piece about Germany & the end of the first world war.

  9. Sounds divine! Though, for us northerners, the Hull-Rotterdam crossing is perhaps more convenient. I wonder how it compares to the Harwich service – anyone know? It’s always good to be able to go on a recommendation.

  10. I lived just down the road from Leiden in a place called Voorschoten for 7 years. It is a lovely place to visit and in the summer we used to cycle there for an evening out. It is also a lovely place for visiting the bulb fields in the Spring. Enjoy your break x

  11. Leiden – just along the railway track from Den Haag our home for many years. Nearby Lisse is also great to visit. As for restaurants – The Netherlands is so refreshing in that most restaurants are reasonably priced (however a Japanese one in Amsterdam still ranks as one of the most expensive meals we have ever had – not a particularly special meal either out-pricing even some star-rated establishments,) offering all sorts of cuisine, served with courtesy. Wouldn’t mind going back there to live either – transport system means cars are not necessary! ;~}

  12. Hi Barbara
    I too went to Holland with the school. We stayed in the Ostend Palace Hotel in Belgium and did a day trip to Holland. Not sure where about we went, but there were a lot of tulips and I came home with a pair of original wooden clogs, which I insisted on wearing every day at home until they suddenly disappeared. I think I drove my parents crazy with the noise I made walking round the house with them on that mysteriously they just vanished over night!!! Xxx 🤪🤣
    Sounds like you are having a wonderful time.
    Love & Hugs

  13. So glad you and Dave are having a well earned break after a manic week. I didn’t catch the German show, but I am sure that it went well.
    I was lucky enough to visit many places before we retired, courtesy of my husband’s business trips, but my favourite would have to be in 2001, when I took my mum to Austria and did the Sound of Music tour, for her 70th birthday. It was something she had longed to do and it holds very special memories for me. Enjoy the rest of your trip. Annette X

  14. It all sounds wonderful, so pleased you are both getting some down time together, I think it is well deserved after the last few weeks too. Enjoy and have fun. Much love. Xx

  15. So glad to hear you’re having a well deserved break. I’ve never been to HOrlando – sounds like it needs to go on the list. Had a lovely few days in Bucharest in August after my son’s wedding. The Old Town is beautiful – well worth a visit and lots to see

  16. This brought back memories of our cycling trip to Delft & surrounding area about 28 years ago. It was a time when cycle helmets had just become a thing worn here, all the same & rather large. Needless to say we passed a school as they were finishing for the day. Hundreds of bikes & not a helmet to be seen!! Having sold the holiday as cycling in a flat country our daughter who was about 13 was not impressed after we had been cycling for quite a while trying to find our accommodation. The weather changed & the rain came down & which ever way we went the rain & wind was in our faces & inclines appeared from nowhere. She threw her bike to the ground & shouted ‘’ I wish I belonged to a proper family ‘’ Thanks for reminding us of our holiday.
    Hope you both enjoy the rest of your trip & have a safe uneventful journey home.

  17. So pleased you’re having some down time after your busy week. Leiden looks just beautiful. One of my favourite recent short breaks was to Budapest – absolutely gorgeous, with lots to see and do and beautiful walks too. Although I live there, I have to say Inverness is a beautiful city to visit too, lots of lovely restaurants, river walks, and regular flights from all over the UK!!! x

  18. Love Holland go there a lot
    Often fly to Amsterdam then get a train to different towns in Holland so easy to get around there. Love to hire a bike and explore the countryside and meet the people.
    Holland is definitely one of my favourite places in Europe 😀

  19. Leiden sounds like a great idea Barbara. Hubby and I will be in Holland next May and not too far away from Leiden so may well go and take a look. x

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