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Leiden/Amsterdam and Oxford/London Trip

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My fiance and I will be visiting Leiden from September 1st until the 8th and Oxford from the 8th until the 14th. He'll be at conferences during the day for most of our trip so I was looking to find some cheap and/or free things to do during that time to keep myself occupied. Any suggestions?

We're also thinking about day trips into Amsterdam and London, time permitting. I've been to London before (but it'll be my fiance's first time) so I know most of the must-sees. Any suggestions about sights off the beaten path? My fiance isn't always interested in the touristy sights and I'd also like to see more of the city. And If I have only one day to spend in Amsterdam, what should I see? Again, the cheaper (or free) the better.

And last, this is more of a general question about Leiden: since this is my first trip to a country where English isn't the native language, will have any difficulties getting around the city or communicating with locals since I do not speak or read Dutch?

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