Hoensbroek castle, the Netherlands

Saturday, January 13, 2018

If you are travelling throughout one of the cities of the Meuse-Rhine region and you are into castles,  Hoensbroek Castle (Kasteel Hoensbroek) is for sure one of the destinations you cannot miss. However, this landmark is so precious you should visit it anyway.

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Ready to explore it?
This is one of the largest castles in the Netherlands and is located in the southern region of Limburg (Zuid Limburg), not far from cities like Maastricht, Valkenburg, Heerlen and Aachen. It is also known as the "most lordly stronghold between Rhine and Meuse" rivers.

The oldest part of Hoensbroek castle was built on a swamp (Gebrook - that's why the castle is also called Gebrookhoes) and the first part was built in 1225 as motte-and-bailey castle, that means a castle built over a raised earthwork with a manor and walls. The manor was built in 1250 and the existing oldest part, the round tower, dates back 1360.

Because of its strategic importance for the commerce between Maastricht, Aachen and Cologne in the Duchy of Brabant, the stronghold was expanded several times and has become one of largest castles in the Netherlands and also one of the castles to visit.

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Once parked the car, we immediately reached one the gates, that leads to the first courtyard and where you can buy the tickets.
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The first courtyard reveals the entrance to a second courtyard and reveals also the stunning heart of the stronghold with its oldest part. The woman you see in the pic is my mum :-)

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Finally we got into the second courtyard that also leads to the heart of Hoensbroek castle, the manor, where you can access to the towers and to the rooms. 
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Going up to the oldest tower (the roundy one), you can visit the most interesting part of the castle. Here you can see in the different rooms the armours, weapons,
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Once on the top, you can enjoy a great view of the castle and the surroundings (the old swamp).

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From the top the old tower, you get to the floors of the manor where the most beautiful rooms and halls are located. 

The path leads to the bedroom of the founder, Herman Hoen, later Hoen van Hoensbroeck and leter of the Dukes of Brabant,
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From the groundfloor of the squared tower, you can enjoy a view of the older tower via the coloured glass window.

You can get even to the office room of Hoen van Hoensbroeck,
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 and to the enchanting feast halls. In total the castle has 67 halls, rooms and living quarters.

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Leaving the manor and the halls / rooms, you get back to the manor courtyard and you can take pics like this. :-)

Diaries of an explorerLeaving the castle, it is worth to stroll around the castle and see from different perspectives and

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sometimes you can find some nice inhabitants like this little bird.

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 You can see also the manor and the external wall and towers of Hoensbroek castle

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 and the modern courtyard, built around 18th Century.

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Travel tips:

  • It take around 2 hours to visit the castle. It is also recommended a walk around the castle to enjoy the different sights.
  • Best time to visit: from April to September
  • How to get there: the best way to reach the castle is by car. Other options are trein + bus depending when you come from: you can calculate you route by clicking here (Google Maps position).
  • Surroundings: do not miss the beautiful cities of Maastricht, capital of the Limburg provice, Aachen with its famous cathedral and Valkenburg, where there is the only castle upon hill of the Netherlands.
  • If you like hiking, biking or horse riding, a good place to go is for sure the Brunssumerheide.
  • Where to eat: you can eat close to the castle in the restaurant De Eetkamer.
  • Read other stories of my expat life in the Netherlands in the following section: The Dutch Corner.
Where to sleep:
  • Budget accomodation: Eikhold, is a guesthouse located in the city of Heerlen, at around 5,1 km from the castle with free parking. Prices from 55 Euros per night per double room.
  • Mid-range accomodation: Bed and breakfast Hoeve Berghof located at just 1,6 km from the castle in the city of Heerlen, in an old farm, breakfast and free parking included. Suitable for couples, prices from 99 Euros per room per double room.
  • Luxury accomodation: if you want to sleep in a castle, but since you cannot stay at the Hoensbroek one, you can opt for the Hotel Kasteel Terworm, in a 14th century building surrounded by French rococo gardens and park. Free parking included, but not the breakfast, prices from 150 Euros per night per double room.
Enjoy your visit and stay!

3 commenti:

Genial Belt said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
John Hilston said...

That castle reminds me of Vikings.
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