The history of Rosendael Castle
Rosendael Castle originates from the late Middle Ages, built by the Duke of Guelders. Its eye-catching keep (donjon) stood originally at around 25 meters, and it has a diameter of 16 meters, making it the largest tower of its kind in Holland. Of the original castle, only the keep remains. From 1722, work commenced to build a rectilinear house around the tower, strongly resembling an Amsterdam canal house. The castle’s collection presents a fantastic overview of what life was once like in Holland’s castles. In particular, don’t miss its special collections of furniture, silver and porcelain.
The evolution of Rosendael’s landscape park
In the 18th century, under the stewardship of Lubbert Adolf Torck, who was married to the wealthy Petronella van Hoorn, the Shell Gallery (‘Schelpengalerij’) and Teahouse (‘Theekoepel’) were constructed in the gardens. Daniel Marot, who also designed the gardens of Het Loo Palace, was brought on board to do so. In the 19th century, architect Jan David Zocher Jr. dramatically changed the look and feel of the gardens by combining the smaller ponds into a large one, while its world-famous fountains (‘Bedriegertjes’) were adapted with a new, iconic shell-covered back wall and dazzling mosaic floor. The many mini fountains, which spurt and spray water unexpectedly, have been surprising and delighting visitors for generations.
Enjoy a 360 degree view
Relax at Rosendael Castle
The historical landscape park surrounding Rosendael Castle has attracted visitors from all over the world for centuries. The castle itself is accessible only by guided tour, but as many are scheduled throughout the day, advance reservations are not required. There’s also an attractive shop within the grounds, while the beautiful orangery has been converted into an inviting, atmospheric lunch and coffee spot that looks out onto the castle.
Holland may be best known for its tulips, but in the east of the Netherlands, the African lily (Agapanthus) rules supreme, filling the summer landscape with delightful blue and purple hues. So don’t miss the annual Agapanthus and Castle Garden Market that takes place in the Rosendael estate every July. It’s a fantastic opportunity to meet the specialist growers of this bloom to pick up tips, as well as purchase other garden plants, local artisanal products, antiques and even garden tools. Be sure to take a guided tour of the castle, too.