Nice little boutiques hidden in the narrow backstreets

Leiden’s atmospheric setting has many unique shops, which makes it an excellent city for a shopping trip. Of course, you’ll find nearly all the national chain stores here, but it’s those individual, ‘special’ shops tucked away in the small streets and alleys of the historic city centre that make shopping such fun. And, of course, the good service, friendly staff and attention to quality.

You can look, choose and buy at any of the charming antique shops, well-stocked bookstores, stylish clothes shops, boutiques delicatessens, gift shops and galleries.

In the heart of Leiden’s city centre you will find over a kilometre of shopping pleasure. The Haarlemmerstraat is Leiden’s main shopping street, and a must for everyone who likes shopping. Besides the nationwide chain stores, there is also a wide variety of individual, specialist shops in this popular shopping street.

Running straight through the city centre you will find the Breestraat. This street used to be called the ‘Breede Straete’ and since the beginning of the 20th century the long and elegant ‘Broad Street’ has been a prestige shopping area. You will find a wide variety of shops here, but it is particularly known for its bookstores. The Breestraat is also popularly known as the book boulevard of South Holland.


Nice little boutiques and specialist shops hidden in the narrow backstreets and alleyways.


This historic district lies between the Breestraat to the north and the Rapenburg to the south, and centres around the Pieterskerk. It’s the perfect area for a relaxing stroll through the charming alleys, taking in the courtyards of the authentic Leiden almshouses. You’ll find all those special shops here that are unique to Leiden. With its historic setting and its distinctive shops, a visit to the Pieterskwartier is an absolute must for every visitor to the centre of Leiden.


Originally an old embankment along the Nieuwe Rijn, Hogewoerd has been a lively shopping street for over a century. This typical Leiden neighbourhood lies just outside the centre; you can find many specialty stores in this friendly, bustling area.


To the south of the old centre of Leiden is the charming Doezastraat. This street is home to a small number of shops in a specialist segment of the market. If you are looking for a real butcher or an authentic greengrocer, the Doezastraat is the place to go. This is where you will find some of Leiden’s most unique shops.