Muzee Scheveningen (Den Haag)
The Wednesday half days are the perfect opportunity to get the boys out and go and see some of the smaller museums in the area. This week we set our sights on Muzee Scheveningen, a small museum in an 1877 School House that highlights the history of the resort area and the animals that live in the sea.
The museum is weird and charming and all around quintessentially Dutch. It is part of the Museumkaart.nl program.
Muzee Scheveningen is easily reached by Tram (Tram 1 from Delft) or ample parking is available. We took some street parking just along the side of the museum. If you let the museum know your license plate number they can put you into the system so you don’t have to pay for parking while you are there.
Checking in to the museum, we got a lot of information. The museum was holding an event while we were there and we were informed that some rooms were closed. The kids all got yellow dot stickers on their hand for the “dark room” and we were told to look out for figure from Finding Nemo throughout the museum, but were never given any further instructions on this.
We started the visit by being ushered into the cafe for a complimentary cup of coffee for the adults and lemonade for the children. We have no idea if this is because of the event that was happening or this is standard practice. They were very insistent that we have a seat and enjoy a drink before our visit. If you go to this museum, please let us know if a free cup of coffee is standard practice.
The museum has an incredible collection of shells and ship models that my boys loved. There are information cards in English available throughout the museum, but signage is largely in Dutch.
The first part of the museum is a series of dioramas about life in a fishing village. The dioramas show what a family of a fisherman, boat captain and steam ship owner would have looked like in the area. (Full disclosure: I have a hard time being in a room with dioramas without thinking about the Stars Hallow Museum from Gilmore Girls. Here is a little refresher for you.)
There is also a boat diorama you can board. The ceiling in this room moves back and forth making you feel like you are actually on a boat. The boys just thought this was great.
The shells are one of the highlights of the museum. If your kids, like ours, are into collecting shells then peek into the gift shop. They have an impressive collection and quite a few for sale at the perfect price for little ones. This was a fun little take home from our field trip.
The last room is home to the “dark room.” The kids were super excited to enter a room of blacklight and watch the stickers on their hands glow. There are fish painted on the walls as well. This is a good opportunity to talk about bio-luminescence.
This room is also filled with fish tanks and fish specimens. They have lots of squids and octopuses in jars that are fascinating.
The boys (particularly the little ones) loved watching this little sea horse motor around!
It was a weird but lovely visit. Certainly worth popping in if you have the museumkaart and are looking for a short outing or you are already in the area.
The museum is just a few blocks from the beach. We had a bit more time to kill so we made the walk for a bit of beach time.
You pop out on the beach at the Beelden aan Zee, a sculpture museum that is also part of the Museumkaart program. We didn’t venture in but instead just explored our favorite sculptures on the beach.
Much to the delight of the boys, there were workers getting all the sand from a recent storm off of the sculptures. They were painstakingly cleaning each one out and trucking the mounds of sand back to the beach.
I always like to visit these sculptures on the beach. I just think they are the cutest!
We ventured into the sand for a bit just to do some shell hunting of our own. The empty beach sits in stark contrast to our last visit on a packed summer day.
Nearly all the small vendors on the beach are shut for the winter, but the larger places are still open if you’re looking for a bite to eat in the winter. We grabbed a slice of pizza on our way back to the car to tide us over on the walk back.