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Leiden

Discover the historic sites of this charming town.

A view of Little Amsterdam in Leiden, Netherlands

When visiting the Old Town, there's nothing better than cruising along the canals. From the water, monuments such as the Corn Bridge appear in all their glory. The bridge, which previously stocked and sold corn, dates back to 1642, but the roof was added in 1825. It bears the coat of arms of Leiden, which depicts two crossed keys.

Several gates have been erected at the threshold of the historic center, such as the Doelenpoort, which dates back to 1645. A sculpture of Saint George slaying the dragon sits on top. Other noticeable landmarks include two mills, churches and gabled houses.

Leiden is full of surprises for those exploring on foot, as well — most notably in the charming courtyards of its former hospices. The tower of a demolished fort still caps the hill at the beginning of the Nieuwstraat. From here, strollers enjoy a commanding and panoramic view of the surroundings. A stop at City Hall is recommended too — its magnificent and gabled façade is four centuries old.

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