Learn more about the Netherlands’ history by exploring its splendid castles and country estates. There are around 700 throughout the whole of the Netherlands, ranging from historical forts to sumptuous stately homes. And the great thing is that many of them are open to the public nowadays, whether as museums, family-friendly tourist attractions, hotels, hostels or top-class restaurants.
The Other Holland has its fair share of castles and stately homes too, which reveal seven centuries of Gelderland history and how people used to live. Some of them are open to visitors, allowing you to see the way of life, the architecture and the art of bygone times; others can only be admired from the outside. But virtually all of them form part of expansive country estates and splendid natural landscapes where you can experience how things used to be.
The estate comprises a grand, historically furnished castle in a park featuring numerous points of interest. The highlights include the ‘trick fountains’(Bedriegertjes), the shell gallery and the tea house. Rosendael Castle offers a real sense of what it would have been like to live in a stately home. It displays a unique collection of furniture, silver and porcelain.
Both the park and the castle are open to visitors, possibly with a guided tour. Ask at Reception for details of the day’s activities. Information is available in English on request. There is also a charming shop at Rosendael Castle selling original and unusual gifts.
Huis Bergh is a mediaeval castle that has evolved over the centuries from a fortress into a breathtakingly beautiful castle. Surrounded by a moat and partially enclosed by an old rampart, this castle was the base for the powerful noblemen and counts Van den Bergh. In the 18th century the castle fell into the hands of the noble Hohenzollem-Sigmaringen family from southern Germany.
In 1912 it was taken over by Jan Herman van Heek, an industrialist from Enschede. Jan Herman van Heek was fascinated by mediaeval splendour, which resulted in the restoration of the castle and his collection of mediaeval art.