The Hague is ready, let the tourists come! In order to attract these tourists to the city, the ‘Zee aan Ruimte’ campaign has started again. “It is important to draw attention to The Hague again,” says Sander Hanenberg of The Hague Marketing in the radio program Haags Bakkie on Den Haag FM.

‘Tourism is important for the city. In this way we try to give entrepreneurs a hand, because they have had a difficult year, just like the cultural institutions, hotels and beach pavilions. They have all been touched by the crisis.’

To give tourism a boost again, The Hague Marketing focuses mainly on the so-called ‘quality tourist’. These are not so much the day trippers but the tourists who also stay the night. ‘The main objective is to get people into hotels so that they can stay longer in the city and spend more.’

Summer vacation in own country

It is therefore the intention to get a lot of tourists to the city this summer vacation. ‘Last year people discovered holidays in their own country. We hear from the holiday parks and hotels that many people have made a reservation for this year again. They mainly see it as a holiday in their own country.’

The Netherlands Bureau for Tourism and Congresses also sees this. Almost 40 percent of Dutch people with holiday plans intend to stay in their own country. ‘Very nice that a holiday in our own country is and will remain popular this year,’ says Jos Vranken of the NBTC.

The Hague is the place to be

We have known for a long time that The Hague is the nicest city in the Netherlands. Hanenberg explains why it is also the place to be for tourists: ‘The Hague is a huge green city if you compare it with other cities in the Netherlands and Western Europe. We have beautiful parks such as Clingendael, Ockenburgh and Westbroekpark. That is very special for a city.’

‘We also have eleven kilometers of beach. No city can claim that. We try to draw attention to this as much as possible. In addition, The Hague has a large cultural offer. We have 43 museums, which is unprecedented. And a wonderful range of shops. The ideal mix.’

That is why Hanenberg hopes that the campaign will help attract people to the city. ‘I hope that people will become proud of The Hague again and inspire their own network of people outside the city.’

Nuisance Scheveningen

Tourism also poses some challenges. Last summer it was so busy at Scheveningen that there was a lot of nuisance, such as street races, use of laughing gas and intimidation. The municipality has drawn up an action plan for this year to combat the nuisance.

During the first beach days last week, the plan still seemed to rattle from all sides. On Thursday, the mayor decided to intervene immediately by sending more enforcers to Scheveningen and canceling extra roads. Alderman Anne Mulder (responsible for the Scheveningen district) was very disappointed by the nuisance and promised to get better this summer. The website where people can report nuisance has now gone online.

The Zee aan Ruimte campaign can be seen in public places in The Hague, but also on national TV and social media.

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