The annual Vlaggetjesdag festival will take place in and around the Scheveningen Harbour on Saturday, 16 June. This festival is one of the biggest events of the year in The Hague and usually attracts some 200,000 visitors.
Vlaggetjesdag (“Flag Day”) has celebrated the arrival of the first herring (Hollandse Nieuwe) in the southern coastal towns of Vlaardingen and Scheveningen for years. Hundreds of thousands of people gather in Scheveningen for the festivities, and the fishing boats are decked out especially for the occasion.
In addition to the omnipresent herring, this day also features a number of activities unrelated to fish, for both young and old. In Scheveningen the first barrel of herring is traditionally sold at an auction on the Thursday preceding the official Vlaggetjesdag Scheveningen, and the proceeds go to charity.
A day full of fun
During Vlaggetjesdag Scheveningen visitors are invited to watch spectacular demonstrations by rescue teams, join in on old Dutch children’s games, admire famous artists, watch the Royal Navy, tour boats and old fire engines, enjoy demonstrations of old handicrafts, watch famous chefs perform their magic, taste Scheveningen’s liquorice, sing along with shanty choirs and enjoy the many colourful traditional costumes.
Orchestras, bands, artists, artisans and old sailing luggers all contribute to the fun, which also includes miniature ships, sailing tours and sampling of all kinds of fish. And if visitors want a break from the action, they can always make a pit stop at one of the many outdoor cafes or go exploring the historical Scheveningen village.
Photo by Dirk Hol