The “Poetry Slam Leeuwarden“ was set up in the beginning of 2015, the idea behind it was to create something that didn’t exist in Leeuwarden so far. A nice evening during the week where you can hang out, listen to poetry and connect with new people, even make friends. The Slam always takes place on a Wednesday night in different locations. There are three rounds in which the public gets to decide the winner/s of each round. In the first round all Slammers get the chance to impress the public, who will decide at the end of each round. For the second round the four Slammers with the most votes from round one each get 5 minutes to make an impression and get into the final round. The final round is made up of the two remaining Slammers who each get again 5 minutes to win the prize of the evening. Although most of the Slammers write in Dutch there is no limitation to language.
If you’re interested feel free to contact the “Poetry Slam Leeuwarden” on facebook.
Poetry Slam Leeuwarden I Mienskip
Meeting: on a Wednesday
Games Sunday is a bi-weekly event for people who like to play pub games and enjoy a drink and/or snack with it. It starts around 19.00 at Paddy O’Ryan Irish Pub. Seated at the big table in front of the pub there is enough space to play big games together or smaller games in smaller groups. Games played vary on the group size and games brought that evening. Favorite games that are played: • Cards Against Humanity • Dixit • Werewolves • Dobble • Jungle Speed • Guess the person/thing. New games are introduced frequently by new and old participants.
Games Sunday I Mienskip
Meeting: Every second Sunday 19:00 – till we’re done.
From the outside it doesn’t look like this, but Eindeloos is one of the best restaurants of Leeuwarden. They don’t have a menu here, you can say what you don’t like and how many courses you’d like to have. Everything afterwards is a surprise in the hands of chef cook Willem Schaafsma. He likes to work with locally sourced seasonal ingredients.
Eindeloos I Restaurants
Korfmakersstraat 17 (show on map / google)
Open: Tue-Sat: 18:00 – late
Tel: 058 2130835
Just a short walk from the city you can find restaurant Wannee, where you can experience the Dutch cuisine. The concept from the restaurant is 80:20. Eighty percent vegetables and 20 percent meat. Eighty percent from Dutch soil and waters and 20 percent international. The restaurant is run by Hotel Management students from Stenden university. The students are still learning, so they do make their little mistakes, but this also has it’s charm. Because of this the prices are much lower from what you’d normally pay for a restaurant like this.
The terp of Hegebeintum is the highest of Fryslân. The Frisian landscape is filled with terpen, these man made mounds protected the people and their cattle against floods. These mounds were built-up repeatedly with clay, dung and household waste. There are over a 1000 mounds in Fryslân. The city centre of Leeuwarden was also built on 3 mounds. The majority of the mounds have reached heights of 2 – 7 metre above sea level. The mound of Hegebeintum is the highest of them all at almost 9 metre! So if you want to visit a mound, it’s got to be this one.
Around 1000 AD dyke-building had begun which made the mounds less necessary. They remained intact however until the 19th century, when the removal of the fertile soil started, which was used as manure for infertile fields. The mound of Hegebeintum was also partly dug off. The archaeological findings that were found are on display in the visitors centre. For a small fee you can also enter the unusually rich decorated protestant church.
Hegebeintum I Surroundings
Hegebeintum (Show on googlemaps)
Open: Sun 12:00-17:00, Mon-Sat 10:00-17:00 (Apr-Oct) Tue-Sat: 10:00-17:00 (Nov-Mar)
Distance to Leeuwarden (city centre): 21,8 km
The Groene Ster (Green Star) is the natural swimming pool in Leeuwarden. This is where Leeuwarden heads when the temperature reaches above 25 degrees. There are different beaches for everybody’s liking. There is a family beach, a nudity beach and even a dog beach. But also when the thermometer hits a bit lower, the area is really nice to explore. if you walk or cycle passed the golf course you will end up in Tytjerk where you can find another park:Vijversburg (aka ‘Bos van Ypey’)
Grone Ster I City Parks
Groene Ster (show on map)
Just outside of Leeuwarden you can find the Poptaslot (Popta Castle), aka Heringa State. The history of this manor goes back to the 15th century, when it was founded by the Heringa family as a fortified manor house. In 1603 the van Eysinga family acquired the manor by inheritance, converted it and gave it the appearance it still has today. Following the death of the last member of that family living at Poptaslot, in 1687, her heirs sold the manor to Dr. H. Popta. Up to his death in 1712, Dr. Popta used Heringa State, chiefly as a summer residence. Ever since then the house has never been lived in.
As a museum Poptaslot welcomes visitors to look round the various rooms, which are still fully and delicately furnished in 17th and 18th century style. On the upper floor are the finely worked oak box beds dating from about 1540. Also the ‘Almshouse’ founded by Dr. Popta in 1712 to offer widows in need and single elderly women a carefree old age is certainly worth visiting. From July to August you can visit the Poptaslot and get a guided tour!
Poptaslot I Surroundings
Slotleane 1, Marssum
Open Mon-Sat 11:00-17:00 (July-August)
Admission charges: Adults € 6,-, Children < 12 Year € 3,-
Distance to Leeuwarden (city centre): 6,3 km
Rent your own open boat at Greenjoy. It’s one of the best ways to explore Leeuwarden. From the water you don’t have to do any window shopping any more, instead you can enjoy the beautiful historical buildings from the old town of Leeuwarden. Depending on the day and the time you can rent a boat from €15 to €25 an hour, with a minimum renting period of two hours and a deposit of €50. Next to a visit of the old town it’s also really nice to explore the river the Potmarge. You can book a boat online or at the local tourist information.
This picture of Willy Suskind was made by Roy Schreuder. He painted Suskind on this utility box in front of the house where he used to live. Suskind was a much beloved teacher of German at the MTS in Leeuwarden. He was also Jewish and in 1940 he really feared the upcoming war. He even told his students that he would take the life of himself and his family if the Netherlands would be occupied by Nazi Germany, because he feared that the Nazi’s would use his handicapped son for medical experiments. On the 11th of May 1940, one day after the German attack, his students found out he did what he had told them. You can find this beautiful commemoration of Suskind on the crossing of the Spechtstraat and the Valkstraat.
Willy Suskind I Street Art
Spechtstraat 9 (show on map)
24hr a day
Recommended by Koos Romkes: De Stroohoed at the Eewal is the kind of place that never seems to change. When you enter, there’s a heavy red curtain behind the door, the kind you have quite a struggle with when you leave the place long after last orders. Once inside you can’t help but notice the big long bar with a bartender that seems to blend into the background. There’s two reasons you will notice him and that’s because it is the kind of place where they greet you upon entering and when leaving and, most importantly, he serves you the best beer you had in quite a while. Don’t expect him to fling a bottle behind his back nor will you get your drink on a fancy, though always soaked, napkin. What you will get however is a carefully tapped beer with a good brew head, the way the Europeans like it.
The music is on the background and there’s a fair chance you’ll hear the old exhaust system on the wall near the billiard better. Life goes by slowly in this pub but that’s all the better since you’ll need your time to pick one of their many special brews. There’s always something a little different on tap and the variety of bottled beers is enormous. This is where the bartender comes in handy again. He can guide you to find the beer that you never knew you wanted to try. After a few questions he’ll give you some interesting options of unheard beers from breweries worldwide.
But if you really want to go back in time you should try the jenevers. Don’t expect to get an English gin, something not to be drunk without tonic, if you ask me. The Dutch gin, jenever, is something else completely. The old ones are as refined in taste as some of the good whisk(e)ys (of which they have many too). So if you really want to imagine yourself in the fifties, order a nice old jenever after you tried one of their beers. Carefully sipping your drink you’ll enjoy your moment of mindfulness in an early retro environment. De Stroohoed is the place to be for anyone who has a little time to spare.
De Stroohoed I Bars, cafes & pubs Eewal 72-b (Show on map)
Open: Tue-Sat 19:30-0:00
The Frack Hackerspace is a place for making, creating and experimenting. Where curious people come together to work on various technical projects. It’s a space where knowledge can be freely shared, topics openly discussed and curiosity can be appeased. We’ve got many tools and machines like a CNC machine, a laser cutter, a furnace, sewing machines and plenty of raw materials for crafting and creating. Our main activities revolve around electronics, machines, IT and collaborating. So if that’s of interest to you, come pay us a visit.
We operate as a non profit organisation, completely funded by the members, with few limiting rules and a safe space policy. Everyone is welcome to visit us during our open evening! It doesn’t matter what level of skill/knowledge you have. We are open, free of charge, from 8pm every Tuesday.
Frack I Mienskip
Meeting: Every Tuesday 20:00- late
Shut Up & Write Leeuwarden is a monthly get-together for everyone that likes to write. During a one hour writing session, participants work in silence on their own projects at the regular table of Cafe de Stroohoed. Afterwards, the authors have the opportunity to discuss their creations, exchange experiences and cry on each other’s shoulders. Or just have a beer and a chat, of course. Anything goes! And don’t worry: no one will force you to read aloud your work. The main goal is just to get local writers to meet up in a relaxed and accessible way, since writing is usually a pretty solitary activity.
Anyone who wants to develop their creative writing skills is welcome to join, regardless your age or experience in writing. It doesn’t matter whether you will be working on your fourth novel or just a long letter to your grandma. Participating is free, but do bring some money to get yourself a drink or a snack. Each writing session is announced a week in advance on the Shut Up & Write Facebookpage.
Shut up & Write Leeuwarden I Mienskip
Cafe de Stroohoed
Meeting: Once a month on Wednesday nights (20:00u)
The language exchange Leeuwarden is for everyone who wants to learn or share a language! There is a language evening every two weeks in Paddy O’Ryans Irish Pub on Tuesday 20pm, at which everyone can speak in a language of their choosing. At this meeting you have space to connect with others, who want to teach/share/learn with you! The spoken languages depends on the people who participate, also the topic. On Facebook there is also a group where you can ask questions or contact other LEL members. The participation is for free and we only want it that way! So if you’re interested in different languages, you’re welcome!
Language Exchange Leeuwarden I Mienskip
Meeting: Every second Tuesday 20:00- late
Couchsurfing.org is a website where people offer a couch to other travellers. This is not just a free place to stay. It’s an other way of travelling. By surfing a couch you really get in touch with the local people and culture. On this social network people not only find each other in need of a place to sleep but they also meet each other during events.
In Leeuwarden there is a small active Couchsurfing community who organises the yearly Welcome to Fryslân (WTF) event and a Monthly Leeuwarden Meeting in Cafe de Stee. This last one is organized every month on the Wednesday closest to the 15th and starts from 20:00 onwards. It’s a good way of meeting international (minded) people who share a love for travelling.
Couchsurfing | Mienskip
Cafe de Stee (show on map)
Meeting: Every Wednesday closest to the 15th, 20:00- late
When you open the door of Cafe de Spoek you will see a dimly lit pub, that has beautiful seventies lights and an olive green wall on which you will see pictures from the Beatles, The Stones, Jimi Hendrix and Triggerfinger. An atmosphere that is appreciated by many members of the cultural scene of Leeuwarden from which many belong to the regular customers. The pub serves Jupiler beer on tap and has occasionally live music or poets performing. A line on the wall by Gerry Garcia probably sums up the relaxed mood of most of it’s customers: ‘It’s much too late to do anything about Rock ’n Roll’.
Cafe de Spoek I Bars, cafes & pubs
Location: Sint Jacobsstraat 29
Open: Mon-Tue 15:00-01:00, Thurs-Sat 15:00 – 02:00 & Sun 15:00 – 23:00
Recommended by Peter Postma: Andere Koffie is one of these hidden gems in Leeuwarden. Excellent choice of coffee, tea and cakes – and yes: they can even serve you a typically Dutch breakfast or lunch. Don’t miss out on the Liwwarder Blend tea and their Nokturné Café DJ night every last Thursday evening of the month. And if their coffees and teas don’t make your day already, those serving you, friendly and always welcoming Shamé and Benny, certainly will!
Andere Koffie I Coffee, Tea & Lunch
Naauw 5 (show on map)
Open: Mon 12:00-18:00, Tue-Wed 9:00-18:00, Thu 9:00-22:00, Fri-Sat 9:00-18:00, Sun 12:00-18:00
The Leeuwarden Lounge is an Afghan tapas restaurant. It´s the perfect choice if you want to have something else for a change. It’s not the restaurant where you go for a quick dinner. You go to the Leeuwarden Lounge to forget about time, talk to your friends and relax. They’ve got a few comfortable lounge sofa’s which are perfect for that, but it is also possible to sit on a normal table and chair. Here you can choose between all the different tapas they offer. If you don´t really know what to choose, you can also order their menu and let yourself be surprised. You will get 6 tapas courses for only 15 Euro. You can also head here to lounge with your friends and just have a drink. To finish off in eastern atmosphere’s you can order a Sisha.
Unia 12 might be the smallest restaurant in Leeuwarden. Inside you feel like you are in someone’s living room. This makes you feel welcome and at home. The restaurant is run by two guys, Titus and Theo, a cook and waiter. Every week they have a different ‘aanschuifmenu‘ (to sit down to table- menu) for only 12 Euro. This is a 3 courses menu that includes two choices for starters, two choices for mains and the dessert is always a surprise. Don’t expect haute cussine but just plain good food that’s made with passion. Besides the aanschuifmenu there is also a regular menu card if you like to have more options and you can also go here for lunch. After you had your dinner you are more than welcome to stay for another drink.
Vittorio is the oldest Lunchroom in Leeuwarden. Here they value quality and want to make you feel at home. It’s not a fast-food restaurant where you will get a quick and cheap sandwich, here they take their time to make you a good sandwich. And according to some they serve the best sandwiches in Leeuwarden.
Supermarket Liusja is the Eastern European Supermarket in Leeuwarden. It’s run by the Ukrainian shopkeeper Liusja, who loves to show you everything she sells in her shop. She once showed me all the 20(!) types of pickles she sells. Also for Polish Tatra beer, Prjaniki and Patisson you can head to Liusja, also on Sundays. If you are looking for an original present, Liusja sells gift baskets full with eastern European products as well. If you haven’t been sold yet, go and see her 4 minute long tv commercial! [Liusja is moved to a new location and these pictures might not resemble the new interior of the shop, her new shop is on the same location as the Selam supermarket]