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How to start 2022 in Leeuwarden - The Covid-Proof Edition

Date:17 January 2022
Author:Leslie Willis
The Beurs in Leeuwarden
The Beurs in Leeuwarden

It’s January, it’s cold, it’s not lockdown anymore, but Covid-numbers are as high as the sky, and the most exciting places right now seem to be more of a threat than inviting. So, how do you start 2022 in Leeuwarden, the city where Mata Hari and MC Escher spent parts of their lifetimes? The same city that was Europe’s capital of culture in 2018? (Have you realized yet that 2018 is 4 years ago? – You’re welcome.) You’ve given up on your New Year’s Resolutions already and need fresh ideas on what to do now? Then go ahead and read. I promise you’ll find at least one thing to do despite all initially mentioned obstacles. Here you go with five Covid-proof ideas to make your first 2022-memories in Leeuwarden.

1  Detective-Style City Tour

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The days are getting longer already but the amount of sunshine in a day is still limited. Thus, you got all reason to go outside before it’s dark… and before you turn dusty from being home all the time. Luckily, there are plenty of fun, pandemic-proof city tours that even give you and your friends the opportunity to become hands-on detectives. If you are brave enough to solve a case, then sign up for your 2-3 hour adventure! You’ll then get all instructions and hints via Whatsapp.

Apart from the murder-case, there’s also a Europe-Game and an Escape The City Game that you can choose. All tours are offered in English, just leave a comment when signing up in their online form.

Costs per person: around 8€

You can sign up here.

2  Street Art Route

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You are less interested in solving crimes or playing games, but your heart beats for the arts? Do you also prefer to spend less money? Not a problem, because Leeuwarden has it all. Download a free map with a 5km street art route across beautiful graffiti-art for 2,50€ here. Another route is available too, but for that you need to purchase the paper map. For a little preview check out these impressions on Instagram. As you will see, this route is a great opportunity to discover the city in case you have not done that yet. Perhaps you get inspired and start your own graffiti-art collective or meet the love of your life on the way, or a best friend – either way you’ll get fresh air and finest art-food for your eyes. Off you go.

A map costs: 2,50€

3  Meet the Miniature People – Yes, exactly!

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This is probably the most surprising and wonderful tour I have ever heard of. There are teeny tiny people all around Leeuwarden. You must pay attention to notice them and observe what they are up to. The map with the route costs 1,50€ and is available at these shops in the city. By now they should be available everywhere again, however these are the shops that were open during lockdown, in case you want to be sure: Jouw Dagelijkse Kost, Ut Streekie en de CEZZ and the hotel outlets are always open. To get an idea of how tiny the miniature people are, discover some of the magic on the Miniature People Project on Instagram. Don’t forget to ask a colleague from uni, your roomie, or a friend to come with you. Sharing the enjoyment of nature is part of the experience.

A map costs: 1,50€

4  Visit Vijversburg, Culture/Nature park

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If you’d like to enjoy culture and nature while having a cup of tea outside, visit Vijversburg park. The tea house belonging to the park is open on Sundays from 11.00-17.00, enough time to get out after a lecture. There are plenty of things to explore such as the many meandering paths, a historic villa, a cave, a scary hermit’s hut, an orangery containing exotic cactus plants. At Vijversburg you will find a variety of gardens as well as their own collection of visual arts.

Entry: 2,50€
Opening hours: 08.00 - 18.00
Tea House: Sunday, 11.00-17.00

5  Enjoy the Nature of De Groene Ster

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Since you are living in the Netherlands, do not hesitate to bike into nature and explore. De Groene Ster is your place to go. This natural park has plenty of lakes and walking routes that are ideal to get out of your house and let your mind breathe a bit. Maybe take pictures of the nature, bring a sketch book or record the sounds around you. Perhaps you come up with a great story inspired by what you see.

Entry: For free
Get there by bike or bus - both around 30 minutes

6  See the Sea

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Have you been to the sea yet? You can take the train and you’ll be there within half an hour, or you spend a 1,5hrs on your bike and you’re there. Take a look at the gigantic whale sculpture, De Walvis , enjoy the sea air, walk around, take or paint pictures or write secret messages into the sand. It is not far away, but this trip will give you some good sea-energy. Just make sure to wear your raincoat. Get there by bike, bus, or train

Now, do not hesitate to get up and go out, get that fresh air, that inspiration, the laughs and flabbergastedness about all the things you can discover in and around Leeuwarden. This dark time of year is especially challenging, let alone the Covid numbers. Nevertheless, there still are plenty of things to do that take place outside your room. I hope there’s something that appeals to you!

As we unlock again…

  • Planetarium virtual tours
  • Go and see the Beautiful arts supplies shops around the city
  • Were you aware of the amount of book shops around?
  • Take a stand up paddle/boat tour around the canals



About the author

Leslie Willis
Leslie Willis

I am Leslie, 23 years old and currently studying the MSC Voice Technology at Campus Fryslan. Before I studied in Germany which also is where I am from. I’m a language enthusiast and I love music and coffee ..and ginger beer!