Morspoort city gate -
Morspoort, Leiden
Morspoort, Leiden
Photo: © Manon Vonk via Leiden Marketing

Morspoort city gate

2312AC Leiden

Leiden had several city gates in the Middle Ages, but only the Morspoort and Zijlpoort survived the centuries. The Morspoort is located on the western edge of the city. In the past this was not the most pleasant place to enter the city since the bodies of hanged criminals were on display here. Fortunately we no longer do this and the Morspoort is now a beautiful national monument with its striking cupola and wonderful entrance.

  • See one of Leiden's last remaining city gates.
  • The Morspoort is over four hundred years old.
  • Take a moment to relax and enjoy the sun while looking out onto the Morspoort.

The Morspoort’s name

Its name ‘Mors’ comes from the word ‘morass’. The western part of Leiden used to be a marshy meadow area. When the Morspoort was completed in 1611 this seems the name most naturally suited. The gate was always manned by city guards. It was part of the city’s defensive walls. Its cupola also served as a prison for some time.


The Morspoort city gate is more than just a beautiful entrance into the city. It is a great part of Leiden with a beautiful terrace that is always in the sub. This is the place to go for lunch and dinner at a Spanish tapas restaurant or De La Soul, which is known for its ‘soul food’ shared with your fellow guests.

Did you find this interesting? Discover more