Tue. Jul 16th, 2024

Quite surprisingly the Netherlands is a country of beautiful castles – from medieval castle ruins to very well preserved strongholds, and fairy-tale castles with turrets. Where can you see the most beautiful castles in the Netherlands? Read further to find out.

Who says these are the most beautiful castles in the Netherlands?

Before we answer this question, let’s first define what a castle is. According to Wikipedia:

castle is a type of fortified structure built during the Middle Ages predominantly by the nobility or royalty and by military orders. Scholars debate the scope of the word castle, but usually consider it to be the private fortified residence of a lord or noble.

Wikipedia

And Encyclopedia Britannica says:

castle, medieval stronghold, generally the residence of the king or lord of the territory in which it stands.

Encyclopedia Britannica

Sometimes you’ll come across listicles of Dutch castles that include country houses, estates, or palaces, like Het Loo Palace (Paleis Het Loo), for example. Well, these aren’t castles in the true sense of the word, so they didn’t get a place on our list.

Another criteria we’ve used when preparing this list of castles in Netherlands, is that they should be open to the public. So, we might have missed out one or two beautiful Dutch castles, like Schaloen Castle, if they cannot be visited, but what’s the point of including such places, if you can’t see them on your trip.

So, here they are, the 15 most beautiful castles in the Netherlands according to Exploring the Netherlands.

a large castle with round turrest at the corners, with moat in the foreground and 2 swans swimming in front of the castle, Muiderslot Castle, Netherlands

1. Amsterdam Castle Muiderslot

Located some 15 kilometer to the southeast of Amsterdam, Muiderslot  is among the most popular castles in the Netherlands and certainly one of the most visited ones. The first castle on that places was built in 1285 by Count Floris V. Through the centuries the castle was captured, demolished and rebuilt several times. At the end of the 19th century it was thoroughly renovated by the famous Dutch architect Pierre Cuypers.

The castle comes with a beautiful garden that was commissioned by one of its most famous residents – the Dutch poet and playwright P.C. Hooft, who lived there at the beginning of the 17th century.

Muiderslot is an easy day-trip from Amsterdam.

Practical info: Muiderslot
Address: Herengracht 1, 1398 AA Muiden
Entrance fee: adults – 16,50 EUR; children (4-11 yoa) – 10 EUR; Buy tickets here 
Opening times: April – October, daily from 10 am till 5 pm; November – March, Tuesday-Sunday, from 10 am till 5 pm

a beautiful castle with towers reflecting in the water with a green tree hanging in front of the castle on the foreground, Hoensbroek Castle

2. Hoensbroek Castle

The Hoensbroek Castle  is one of the biggest and best preserved castles in the Netherlands open for visiting. Built in the second half of the 14th century, the castle was first a simple tower house. Through the ages it was enlarged and fortified and became an important stronghold. The owners of the castle, the knights and counts Van Hoensbroek lived in the castle until the end of the 18th century.

After the French Revolution the castle was abandoned and left to its fate. In the 20th century the castle was restored a few times and today is one of the most beautiful castles to visit in the Netherlands. The stories of the castle are told in an interactive way and you can do a self-guided tour with the brochure that’s available at the ticket office. There’s also a special treasure hunt for kids.

Hoensbroek Castle should be on your bucket list, if you are visiting Maastricht (30 km) and South Limburg.

Practical info: Hoensbroek Castle (Kasteel Hoensbroek)
Address: Klinkertstraat 118, 6433 PB Hoensbroek
Entrance fee: adults – 13,50 EUR; children (4-12 yoa) – 9,95 EUR; Buy tickets here 
Opening times: Monday-Sunday, from 10 am till 5:30 pm

a huge castle with rounded turrets surrounded by water, De Haar Castle in the Netherlands

3. De Haar Castle

De Haar Castle  (Kasteel de Haar) is located near Utrecht. It is without a doubt the most famous and most visited castle in the Netherlands. It’s also the biggest castle in the Netherlands. The castle was built around 1390 and by De Haar family it was owned by the famous Van Zuylen. The castle was restored in 1892 by the famous Dutch architect Pierre Cuypers in a Neo-Gothic style. The castle is surrounded by a beautiful park and gardens in the style of Versailles. You can visit the park separately from the garden.

De Haar Castle is an easy day trip not only from Utrecht (14 km), but also from Amsterdam (32 km).

Practical info: De Haar Castle (Kasteel de Haar)
Address: Kasteellaan 1, 3455 RR Haarzuilens
Entrance fee: adults – 19 EUR (7 EUR gardens only); children (4-12 yoa) – 12,50 EUR (5 EUR gardens only); Buy your tickets here 
Opening times: Monday-Sunday, from 10 am till 5 pm

a fairy-tale like castle aganst blue sky with fluffy white clouds, Heeswijk Castle, the Netherlands

4. Heeswijk Castle

Located just a few kilometers southeast of Den Bosch, Heeswijk Castle  (Kasteel Heeswijk) is one of the oldest preserved castles in the Netherlands. The first mote-and-bailey castle at the place of the current castle was built in 1080. Through the centuries the castle was enlarged many times and a great part of the building today dates back to the 15-16th century. The big round tower, however, is from the 19th century. The castle was beautifully restored in 2005 and is open today to the public.

Heeswijk Castle would the perfect day trip from Den Bosch (13 km) or Eindhoven (30 km).

Practical info: Heeswijk Castle (Kasteel Heeswijk)
Address: Kanaaldijk-Noord 4, 5473 VA Heeswijk Dinther
Entrance fee: adults – 12 EUR; children (4-12 yoa) – 7 EUR; Buy your tickets here 
Opening times: Tuesday-Sunday, from 10 am till 5 pm

a medieva castle with turrets and a rounded tower on a green hill, surrounded by a moat, Slot Loevestein in the Netherlands

5. Loevestein Castle

Loevestein Castle  , or Slot Loevestein in Dutch, was built in the 14th century by the knight Dirc Loef but soon after was taken by the Count of Holland. In the 17th century the castle was turned into a state prison. One of the greatest legal scholars, the father of the modern international law – Hugo Grotius (Hugo de Groot in Dutch), was imprisoned there but he succeeded to escape. How did he manage to do this? Visit the castle to find out!

Loevestein Castle is the perfect day trip from Den Bosch (30 km).

Practical info: Loevenstein Castle (Slot Loevenstein)
Address: Loevestein 1, 5307 TG Poederoijen
Entrance fee: adults – 14,50 EUR; children (4-12 yoa) – 10 EUR; Buy your tickets here 
Opening times: Monday-Sunday, from 10 am till 5 pm

a medieval castle with rounded towers at the corners surrounded by water, Ammerzoyen castle in the Netherlands

6. Ammersoyen Castle

Ammersoyen Castle (Kasteel Ammersoyen) is an adorable moated castle. The construction of the defensive castle near the Meuse River started in the 12th century and it was finished in the 13th century. The Ammersoyen Castle was completely restored to its medieval glory in the 1970s and is open for visitors today. There are also some lovely walks in the neighbourhood.

If you are staying in Den Bosch (10 km), you can’t miss visiting Ammersoyen Castle on a day trip.

Practical info: Ammersoyen Castle (Kasteel Ammersoyen)
Address: Kasteellaan 1, 5324 JR Ammerzoden
Entrance fee: adults – 12 EUR; children (4-18 yoa) – 5 EUR
Opening times: April – October: Wednesday-Sunday, from 11 am till 5 pm

a castle with a square tower on a rounded piece of land, surrounded by water, Huis Bergh Castle, the Netherlands

7. Huis Bergh Castle

Huis Bergh Castle (Kasteel Huis Bergh) is probably the largest castle in the Netherlands that is open for visits. The first records of the castle date back to the 13th century. The castle was built by the Counts of Bergh. It suffered twice from big fires: in 1735 it was completely destroyed and in 1939 seriously damaged. The castle boasts an amazing collection of early Italian paintings, medieval manuscripts and historical coins.

Huis Bergh Castle is a lovely day trip from Arnhem (37 km).

Practical info: Huis Bergh Castle (Kasteel Huis Bergh)
Address: Hof van Bergh 8, 7041 AC ‘s-Heerenberg
Entrance fee: adults – 13,50 EUR; children (4-12 yoa) – 8,50 EUR
Opening times: 29 March – 30 October: Tuesday-Sunday, from 12:30 pm till 4:30 pm; 1 November – 28 March: Wednesday, Saturday-Sunday, from 12:30 pm till 4:30 pm

multiple turrets and towers of varoious sizes of a castle and a half green tree at the foreground, Doorwerth Castle, the Netherlands

8. Doorwerth Castle

One of the loveliest castles in the Netherlands – Doorwerth Castle (Kasteel Doorwerth), is located 10 km to the east of Arnhem, on the Rhine River. It was built at the end of the 13th century at the place where a wooden castle previously stood. The castle reached its prime in the 16th century under its original owners – the Lords of Dorenweerd. However, the castle changed owners in 17th century and in the 18th century it fell in a state of despair. WWII wasn’t kind to the castle and during the Battle of Arnhem it was heavily destroyed. Today, the castle is beautifully restored to its Medieval glory and can be visited.

If you visiting Arnhem (10 km), you should not miss Doorwerth Castle.

Practical info: Doorwerth Castle (Kasteel Doorwerth)
Address: Fonteinallee 2b, 6865 ND Doorwerth
Entrance fee: adults – 12 EUR; children (4-18 yoa) – 5 EUR
Opening times: Tuesday-Sunday, from 11 am till 5 pm

in the foreground a moat with a fountain and the water covered with water lelies, at the background a castle with turrets, Ruurlo Castle, the Netherlands

9. Ruurlo Castle

The beautiful Ruurlo Castle is located in the province of Gelderland, in the outskirts of the little town of Ruurlo. It’s not known when the castle was built but it was first mentioned in 1326. Today’s appearance of the castle is from the 16th and the 17th century. From the 1980s until 2005 the castle served as the town hall of Ruurlo. In 2017 it was bought by the magnate Melchers and became part of the Museum MORE for Contemporary Realism. In Ruurlo Castle you can admire a collection of paintings by the famous Dutch painter Carel Willink (1900-1983).

Ruurlo Castle can be visited on a day trip from Arnhem (55 km).

Practical info: Ruurlo Castle (Kasteel Ruurlo)
Address: Vordenseweg 2, 7261 LZ Ruurlo
Entrance fee: adults – 14,50 EUR; children (12-18 yoa) – 8,50 EUR; combined ticket with Museum MORE in Gorssel: adults – 27 EUR; children (12-18 yoa) – 9 EUR
Opening times: Tuesday-Sunday, from 11 am till 5 pm

10. Zuylen Castle

Zuylen Castle, or Slot Zuylen in Dutch, is another famous Dutch castle worth visiting. The beginning of the castle can be traced back to 1250 when a keep was built at the place of the today’s castle. Later, through the centuries the castle was enlarged and rebuilt many times. In the 1950s the castle and its beautiful gardens were established as a museum following the will of the last owners of the castle – the family Van Tuyll van Serooskerken. The stunning castle park and gardens are brought back to their 19th century look.

Zuylen Castle is the perfect day trip from Amsterdam (35) and a must-see, if you are visiting Utrecht (7 km).

Practical info: Slot Zuylen (Slot Zuylen)
Address: Tournooiveld 1, 3611 AS Oud-Zuilen
Entrance fee: adults – 14 EUR (4 EUR – only the garden); children (4-15 yoa) – 7 EUR (garden is free of charge)
Opening times: 1 April – 31 October: Wednesday-Sunday, from 11 am till 3:30 pm; 1 November – 31 March: Friday-Sunday, from 11 am till 3:30 pm

11. Hernen Castle

Although it’s one of the less popular castles in the Netherlands, Hernen Castle is absolutely worth the visit. The castle was first mentioned in 1247 and reached its prime in the 15th-17th century when it was owned by the family Van Wijhe. In 1942-1957 the castle was renovated and a part of it was made open for visitors. It still keeps its medieval look-and-feel. Regularly, there are organized various activities, the most popular of which is the annual medieval festival held at the end of August.

If you are visiting Nijmegen (16 km), you have to include Hernen Castle on your itinerary.

Practical info: Hernen Castle (Kasteel Hernen)
Address: Dorpsstraat 40, 6616 AH Hernen
Entrance fee: adults – 10 EUR; children (4-18 yoa) – 5 EUR
Opening times: April – October: Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday, from 12 am till 4:30 pm; November – March: Sunday, from 12 am till 4 pm

a large castle with small turrets and green trees as a frame, Wijchen Castle, Netherlands

12. Wijchen Castle

Wijchen Castle is located in the middle of the little town of Wijchen. It was built in the 14th century but the today’s look of the castle is from the 17th century. In 1906 the castle burnt down almost completely together with all artworks, treasures and furniture. A few years later the castle was rebuilt to its 17th century appearance, but all the furnishings were forever lost. Since the 1930s the castle served as the city’s town hall and in 1996 a part of the castle became a museum.

The castle has a historical garden with agricultural plants, that were grown in the area from the Late Iron Age up to the Middle Ages. There’s also a herb garden.

Wijchen Castle can’t be missed if you are staying in or near Nijmegen (11 km).

Practical info: Wijchen Castle (Museum Kasteel Wijchen)
Address: Kasteellaan 9, 6602 DA Wijchen
Entrance fee: adults – 12,50 EUR; children (4-18 yoa) – 6 EUR
Opening times: Tuesday-Sunday, from 10 am till 5 pm

castle with beautiful elements on the facade against blue sky with white clouds, a green law with a circular form in front of the ccastle and two trees, Cannenbburch Castle, the Netherlands

13. Cannenburch Castle

The water castle Cannenburch, also known as Cannenburgh, was built in 1543 on the ruins of a previous castle, which stood there already in 1365. In 1750 the caste was expanded and basically this is how it remained till the present day. In the 1980s the castle was restored to its 18th century look. The castle is surrounded by a beautiful park and there is a lovely kitchen garden.

Cannenburch Castle would make it a lovely day trip, if your staying in Zwolle (32 km).

Practical info: Cannenburch Castle (Kasteel de Cannenburch)
Address: Maarten van Rossumplein 4, 8171 EB Vaassen
Entrance fee: adults – 12 EUR; children (4-18 yoa) – 5 EUR
Opening times: April – October: Tuesday-Sunday, from 11 am till 4 pm

a bird's-eye view of a castle with turrets, surrounded by a moat, Radboud Castle, the Netherlands

14. Radboud Castle

Radboud Castle was an important stronghold in North Holland in the Middle Ages. It was built in the 13th century and played a significant role in the defense of Holland against the West Frisians. Today, the castle is a museum that will bring you on a journey to the Middle Ages and tell you the story of the castle, its inhabitants, and of the region. The castle is named after Radboud (Radbod in English), the King of Frisia (7th-8th century), who was believed to have had there his castle.

Surprisingly, Radboud Castle still makes it a wonderful day trip from Amsterdam, as it’s located at only 60 km from the Dutch capital.

Practical info: Radboud Castle (Kasteel Radboud)
Address: Oudevaartsgat 8, 1671 HM Medemblik
Entrance fee: adults – 8,50 EUR; children (4-12 yoa) – 5,50 EUR
Opening times: Tuesday-Sunday, from 11 am till 5 pm

a greyish castle with round towers at the corner and turrets, surrounded by moat, against a sky with gray rain-heavy clouds, Helmon Castle, the Netherlands

15. Helmond Castle

The moated Helmond Castle (Kasteel Helmond) is a lovely castle in the city centre of Helmond. The castle was built in 1325 and through the years changed hands quite a few times. The last owners of the castle gave it to the municipality of Helmond in 1921 and from 1923 onward it served as the town hall of Helmond. Since 1982 Museum Helmond is housed in the castle.

Helmond Castle can’t be missed if you are visiting Helmond or Eindhoven (14 km).

Source: https://exploringthenetherlands.com/

By Lala