Home in Leiden

Croatian, Za vise informacija na hrvatskom jeziku, molimo kontaktirajte Tamaru,

German, Wenn Du weitere Informationen auf Deutsch brauchst, wende Dich bitte an Dorothea,

Danish, For mere information paa Dansk kan De kontakte Heidi.



Czech, Pro více informací v ceském jazyce kontaktujte prosím


French, Pour plus d'informations en français, vous pouvez contacter Claire Caron sur

Polish, Po dodatkowe informacje w jezyku polskim kontakt or

Spanish, Si quieres más información en castellano, no dudes en ponerte en contacto conmigo, Laura

Indian, Please contact Rippy at if you'd like help in Hindi or Punjabi.

Diana Jekina,


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Visitor Centre Leiden
Stationsweg 41
2312 AT Leiden
Tel: 071 516 6005

Open: Mon-Fri 08.00- 18.00

They say: The Expat Centre Leiden provides a warm welcome to expats who live and work in the
Leiden region. We will help you in answering questions about all kinds of issues you are dealing
with when settling in the Netherlands. Our dedicated expat officers will answer your questions and
offer you advice on a wide range of topics.

Recently opened in the Visitor Centre near Leiden Station, the Expat Centre aims to help 'expats' (not
my favourite term) living and working in the Leiden region. They aim to provide information about
all those tricky dull subjects like tax, insurance housing, etc. that make life so complicated, and they
do have the potential to be an extremely useful resource. They are very 'business-minded' with a lot
of connection to the Bio Science Park and other companies, and, in this sense, provide information
mainly for people who are here for a well-paid job. Although this feels rather non-representative of
the diversity of the international community in Leiden, especially because many of their target
audience already get this sort of help via their companies, they can still help with a wide range of

The website itself has lots of useful information regarding housing, healthcare, taxes, etc. - have a
browse through the sections to see what is there. I learned a lot of new stuff! This is what they do best.
When they attempt to provide social and cultural information, the fact that the site is all written and
researched by non-internationals, who, with all the good intentions in the world, are really only
able to guess at what it feels like to move here, and can't possibly know what international people
need or want to know, the limitations of the site become obvious. However, it is useful enough, if only
to see how the Dutch see themselves: see the social behaviour and manners section as a good example
of a rather naïve image of Dutch society. My personal favourite . . .  "Dutch people celebrate their
birthdays in a grand style." I'll try to remember that the next time I'm stuck in a circle for hours eating
dry cake!

The Centre opened rather before it was ready (in time for the local election!) and so ringing or going
there in person may leave you feeling a bit unsatisfied. Although the staff are extremely nice, they do
not have enough 'on the spot' knowledge. However, you can email them and they will do extensive
research to answer your query, which is extremely useful: email them on

They are all very open to ideas and input, especially about what the international community wants
and needs from such a centre, so do also give them feedback concerning this in order to enable them
to provide the best possible service!



Baby/Toddler Groups
Vogelwijk Playgroup
Oegstgeest Family Life
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Photo Gallery
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Dutch Etiquette, Festivals and Traditions
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Expat Centre Leiden
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