Every year, thousands of expats move to The Hague with its many international and governmental organizations. I lived in The Hague for over 20 years and know The Hague inside out. I have also asked dozens of friends in The Hague which neighborhoods in The Hague would be the best neighborhoods for expat families.
If you are still unsure if you want to move to The Netherlands, you may be interested in reading 11 pros and cons of living in The Netherlands first.
The 11 best neighborhoods in The Hague or villages close to The Hague for expats to live in are:
|Number||Neighborhood / Village in or close to The Hague||Neighborhood / Village|
|2||Bomen en Vruchtenbuurt||neighborhood|
|11||Leidschenveen – Ypenburg||neighborhood|
The Hague is the only city in the world that is not the country’s capital but is still home to its national government. As a consequence, all embassies of foreign countries are in The Hague. In addition, prestigious international institutions like the International Court of Justice and the European Patent Agency are located in The Hague.
Around 50.000 expat family members live in and around The Hague.
Fortunately, The Hague is a unique city with its open and international culture and the best beach resort in the Netherlands, Scheveningen. Furthermore, the Netherlands is one of the wealthiest countries in the world and a wonderful place to live. Therefore, you will soon feel at home in The Hague if you find the right neighborhood.
Let me help you find the best neighborhood for you and your family in The Hague. Before describing the different neighborhoods, I want to discuss four factors you should consider before deciding where to live in and around The Hague.
Where To Live In The Hague?
Keep these four factors in mind when selecting a neighborhood in The Hague.
- Where are the international schools in and around The Hague located?
- The location of the international schools is important because some are located outside The Hague (see map below). You may work in The Hague but decide to live outside The Hague close to the international schools and use the excellent public transportation system to commute to your job in The Hague center.
- How is public transportation in and around The Hague organized?
- Public transportation in and around The Hague is superb. Some of the larger international schools outside of The Hague are close to high-frequency public transportation connections to the center of The Hague, where many expats work. The British School in the Netherlands is an excellent example, with locations in Voorschoten (close to a train station) and Leidschenveen (close to a metro station).
- This opens the possibility for you to live outside of The Hague:
- Which is much cheaper
- Living close to an international school
- Use the excellent public transportation system to commute to work.
- Live in an area with a large expat community.
- Where Does The Expat Community in The Hague Live?
- The expat community in and around The Hague has understood the rationale above very well and lives in neighborhoods and villages outside of The Hague with the combination of international schools and train or metro stations. For example, I lived for many years in Leidschenveen and sold my house to an expat family. In fact, most of the houses in my former street in Leidschenveen are now sold to expat families. Leidschenveen is becoming quite fashionable among expats because of the combination of an international school, a metro station with an excellent connection to The Hague and Rotterdam, and affordable housing.
- Do you want to live close to the sea?
- Part of what makes The Hague unique is its location next to the sea and that it has its own beach resort, Scheveningen, the best beach resort in The Netherlands. Some people are fond of the beach and the sea, and living close to the sea and beaches is important for them. However, even if you live in an eastern suburb like Leidschenveen-Ypenburg, you can reach Scheveningen beach in less than 45 minutes on your bike. So the best advice I can give you is to get yourself a bike asap and move around The Hague like the Dutch.
Where Are The International Schools In The Hague?
There are many international schools in and around the Hague. Check the map below carefully, and make sure that you select a neighborhood from where you can easily reach the school of your choice. Trust me, traffic in The Hague can be a hassle, and you don’t want to live too far from the school you select.
The larger international schools are located in the suburbs or outside of Hague because it is much more affordable to build a school outside The Hague itself. As mentioned above, this opens the possibility for expats to find a much cheaper house outside The Hague and still live close to an international school.
The American School in the Wassenaar is located in one of the most expensive areas near The Hague but arguably one of the country’s best areas to live. Voorschoten, one of the British school locations, is much more affordable and closer to the train station, with an excellent connection with The Hague and Amsterdam. Voorschoten may be a perfect option for you, and I suggest you investigate this charming village in more detail.
Is Living In The Hague Expensive?
A major complaint of expats about The Hague is finding housing and the high prices of houses. Accommodation in cities like The Hague has become very expensive. A recent study of house prices by NRC Handelsblad showed that house prices in The Hague increased by almost 50% between 2017 and 2020. Moreover, 51% of the houses were bought by investors and rented to expat families.
The rapidly rising cost of houses is the reason that many expat families are now looking for housing outside of The Hague and using the excellent public transportation system in The Netherlands to commute to work.
|2||Bomen en Vruchtenbuurt||++|
|11||Leidschenveen – Ypenburg||+|
None of the better family neighborhoods/villages can be called cheap. I will not be surprised if you find the most affordable neighborhoods in the table above, Leidschenveen and Ypenburg, still expensive. The Netherlands is a crowded country, and housing is in short supply. You will have to pay up for quality housing in a good neighborhood.
What Is The Best Way To House Hunt In The Hague?
The best website in The Netherlands to look for housing is https://www.funda.nl, and I strongly advise you to use this website to orientate yourself to the Dutch housing market.
- Use the Funda link below, which provides an overview of all houses for sale in and around The Hague.
- Use the Funda link below to hunt for the rental property available at this moment in and around The Hague.
What Are The 11 Best Neighborhoods Of The Hague?
You can find the best neighborhoods in The Hague and villages around The Hague on the map below.
- The Vogelwijk is a spacious neighborhood with villas built approximately 100 years ago. The gardens are usually large, making it a very green and friendly area. The Vogelwijk is located next to beautiful dunes, beaches, and city parks. It is no surprise that Vogelwijk is one of The Hague’s most popular and expensive neighborhoods. Vogelwijk even won the prestigious title of “best neighborhood of the Netherlands” in 2022. However, it will not be easy to reach the highways from Vogelwijk and get out of The Hague. Parking can also be a nightmare in Vogelwijk on sunny summer days because beach lovers try to park their cars as close to the beach as possible.
- Bomen en Vruchtenbuurt
- The Bomen en Vruchtenbuurt is a lively residential area with a mix of houses in different styles. There are plenty of shops, cafés, and lunchrooms, adding to the liveliness. It is an urban area and not as green as the surrounding neighborhoods but close enough to the dunes and beach to find some rest. Public transportation to the city center is superb, but parking and highway access may be a problem depending on the day’s time.
- Statenkwartier is one of the most charming neighborhoods of The Hague, with plenty of stately houses. Its Art Nouveau-style architecture is rather impressive. The Statenkwartier is exceptionally well served by public transportation, but access to the highways is not easy. Statenkwartier also has a delightful shopping street, the Frederik Hendriklaan. Many expat families live in Statenkwartier and enjoy the quality of life in this area. The beaches and harbor of Scheveningen are within walking distance, so you will always have the opportunity to enjoy fresh fish on one of the many terraces around the port of Scheveningen.
- Belgisch Park
- Belgisch Park is a gorgeous residential area with stately villas and detached houses in a chic park-like setting. It is a very green area with large front gardens and very close to the beaches of Scheveningen. Public transportation to the city center and the central railway station is excellent, but access to the highways is not easy. Belgisch Park is definitely one of The Hague’s better and most expensive residential areas.
- The Archipelbuurt is a neighborhood located between Statenkwartier and Benoordenhout. It is less stately and much more inner-city than these two other neighborhoods. However, it is also more lively with its neo-renaissance architecture and lovely squares. As a result, Archipelbuurt ranked 4th in the “best neighborhoods of The Netherlands” competition in 2022. Public transportation to the city center is excellent, but access to the highways is not easy.
- Benoordenhout is a stately and beloved neighborhood in The Hague with its monumental yet residential atmosphere. Benoordenhout is a green district located between two of the largest city parks. The location of Benoordenhout provides easy access to the city center and highways. In addition, Scheveningen and its beach is just a short bike ride away.
- Bezuidenhout is not as stately as Benoordenhout and is a mixture of single-family houses and apartment blocks. However, Bezuidenhout is much more affordable than Benoordenhout. Bezuidenhout has excellent public transportation (train) connections to Amsterdam and Rotterdam and easy highway access. Bezuidenhout is a superb neighborhood if you have to commute by car. Like Benoordenhout, the city center is within biking distance, as is the beach in Scheveningen.
- Voorburg used to be a village outside of The Hague but is now incorporated into the urban area of The Hague. However, Voorburg is still an independent municipality. Voorburg has excellent residential areas, but you must be selective because some areas are not good. An important advantage of Voorburg is the proximity of train and metro stations, providing easy connections to Amsterdam and Rotterdam. Access to the highways is also superb.
- Voorschoten is a village north of The Hague and adjacent to Leiden. Due to its convenient location and proximity to international schools, many expat families live in Voorschoten and commute to work. A major advantage of Voorschoten is its train station providing easy connections to The Hague and Amsterdam. You will also enjoy easy access to the highways. In addition, Voorschoten is not as expensive as Wassenaar and may be an excellent choice for you because it is a lovely village.
- Wassenaar is an independent municipality on the north side of The Hague and The Beverly Hills of The Netherlands with many gated villas. Wassenaar is located next to beautiful dunes and is very popular with expat families because of the proximity of two larger international schools. Wassenaar is probably the most expensive place to live in or around The Hague, if not in The Netherlands, with an average house price of € 1.3 mln in 2021, but Wassenaar is lovely, just lovely. Wassenaar can easily be reached by car, but public transportation is not as convenient as in The Hague.
- Leidschenveen – Ypenburg
- Leidschenveen – Ypenburg is one of The Hague’s newest suburbs, built between 1995 – and 2005. Public transportation in Leidschenveen – Ypenburg is excellent, with train, metro, and tram stations and easy highway access. Ypenburg is more charming than Leidschenveen, with a more diverse mixture of single-family homes and low apartment blocks. Ypenburg is also a bit greener and closer to Delft, a lovely city. You may also want to investigate Nootdorp, adjacent to Ypenburg, as a friendly village for your family to live in.
What Are Bad Neighborhoods In The Hague?
There are specific neighborhoods in The Hague that you don’t want to live in and want to avoid at night. The Hague is a very diverse city with some neighborhoods to avoid.
Some bad neighborhoods in The Hague are:
Is The Hague A Safe City?
The Netherlands is a relatively safe country compared to other Western European countries. However, it is also true that most of the crimes in The Netherlands take place in larger cities, like The Hague.
The Hague is a relatively safe city in the Netherlands with less crime than Amsterdam. The large majority of crime in The Hague is bicycle theft and pickpocketing. You should also avoid the bad neighborhoods in The Hague like Schilderswijk during evenings and nights.
The larger Dutch cities are dark blue on the map below, indicating more traditional criminality.
Bike theft is a severe problem in The Netherlands, especially in major cities like The Hague. A large part of the crime rate in the Netherlands is due to the theft of bikes. Approximately 0,5 million bicycles are stolen annually out of the 18 million bikes in total. The more expensive e-bikes are most popular among thieves, and you should lock your e-bike securely if you are not using it.
Watch out for pickpocketing in bigger cities. It is a matter of common sense to protect your wallet carefully in a big city like The Hague. You should also avoid some neighborhoods in The Hague, like Schilderskwartier, in the evenings and during the night.
Living In The Hague Vs. Living In Amsterdam?
The expat city ranking 2019 compared living in The Hague vs. living in Amsterdam directly through the eyes of expats.
Overall, The Hague ranked much higher (9th place out of 82 cities) than Amsterdam (48th place out of 82 cities) in this worldwide expat survey. In addition, housing in and around The Hague is easier to find and more affordable than in Amsterdam.
Average house prices in The Netherlands in Q2-20022 were € 448.000. A study of average house prices in the cheapest and most expensive neighborhoods in Dutch cities in Q2-2021 confirmed that house prices in the better areas in The Hague were lower than in Amsterdam (see table below) but much higher than in Rotterdam and Eindhoven.
The most expensive neighborhoods in The Hague were Belgisch Park and adjacent areas. The cheapest neighborhood in The Hague was Transvaal, a neighborhood that you better avoid.
|Dutch City||Average house prices in the cheapest and most expensive neighborhoods|
|Amsterdam||€ 260.000 – € 1.125.000|
|The Hague||€ 205.000 – € 865.000|
|Rotterdam||€ 195.000 – € 470.000|
|Utrecht||€ 335.000 – € 570.000|
|Eindhoven||€ 270.000 – € 445.000|
Expats praise the quality of public transportation in The Hague and are happy with the job security of working in governmental and institutional institutions.
Rotterdam also scored lower than The Hague in the eyes of expats. However, expats appreciated living in Rotterdam more than in Amsterdam because Rotterdam still scored above average (32nd out of 82 cities). Rotterdam can be a lovely city to live in if you find the right neighborhood.
Both The Hague, Amsterdam, and Rotterdam score poorly on the quality of the climate in The Netherlands. No surprise here because we realize that the weather in The Netherlands is not always pleasant.
I compared living in The Hague vs. living in Amsterdam in much more detail in another article on this website; living in Amsterdam vs. The Hague (11 Pros and Cons).
Best Neighborhoods In Other Dutch Cities?
Check out the links below if you want to live in another Dutch city.