7 ways to experience the North Brabant war history
We will be commemorating 75 years of freedom in 2019 and 2020. We will bring stories to life, remember the Second World War and celebrate the liberation. Whether you are looking for an accessible way to experience the history of the war, or want to immerse yourself in personal stories, there’s plenty to see and experience in North Brabant. Experience the Dilemma Maze, cycle through the War Museum, visit an exhibition or plan an educational day out with the children. If you want to know more, take a look at the Brabant Remembers website.
1. Dilemma Maze: what would you do?
Imagine: someone needs your help but it will put you in danger. Do you help, or do you look the other way? The Dilemma Maze in Bergen op Zoom is an interactive art installation which confronts you in a unique way with life during the Second World War. “Anyone who walks through the woods to the Dilemma Maze will eventually come to a white door. As the door opens, you step inside and an unforgettable experience starts,” according to Marco who writes the blog Mixed Grill. Tip: combine your visit with a day out in Bergen op Zoom. Admission to the maze is free, and the maze is accessible from sunrise to sunset, till 21:00 at the latest.
2. A global first: cycle through the War Museum
Even the New York Times thought it was worth reporting. Visitors to the Overloon War Museum in Overloon are able to cycle 90 metres through the main museum hall itself, at a height of three metres. The bridge gives you a wonderful view of the enormous World War Two collection with hundreds of military vehicles and cannons. The War Museum is also recommended for families with children: exciting, environmentally conscious, and educational. For a weekend away, combine the museum with the Zoo Parc Overloon and the adjacent Landal De Vers bungalow park.
3. STILL LIFES exhibition
Putting reality on pause 75 years after the war. STILL LIFES is a collection of 75 scale models, each of which tells the story of a decisive moment in a personal war story. These stories come from several villages and towns in Brabant, where they will also be exhibited. All the scale models will be brought together to form one large exhibition. From 16 November 2019 until May 2020 the exhibition can be viewed on the observation balcony of LocHal in Tilburg.
4. Visit Camp Vught National Memorial
Confrontational. Impressive. Goose bumps. These are some of the frequently heard responses to Camp Vught National Memorial. The museum is housed on the grounds of the only former SS concentration camp in the Netherlands, five kilometres from the centre of ’s-Hertogenbosch. The museum is suitable for children from about the age of 10. The Camp Vught National Memorial was refurbished in 2019. The reopening of the new building and a new permanent exhibition are expected at the end of 2019. Check out the website for the latest information. (photos: Paul Jespers)
5. Cycle the Liberation Route through North Brabant
A cycle route that connects the most important milestones from the Second World War in Brabant. Liberation Route Brabant takes you past war stories, audio columns, monuments and museums which together make the impact of war visible. The cycle route makes use of the cycle route network in Brabant. Check out our route page for more information or to order route maps.
6. Wings of Liberation Museum
Army vehicles, machines, aircraft and cannons that were actually used during Operation Market Garden. This is a selection of the impressive collection of the Wings of Liberation Museum in Best. Did you know that you can learn to fly in the cockpit of a flight simulator? If you contact them in advance you can even go for a ride in a historical army vehicle.
7. Visit an event or activity
Brabant is celebrating 75 years of liberty with an extensive programme. That means: countless activities, events and exhibitions throughout the province! There are a few suggestions below. Check out our Brabant Remembers calendar for a complete summary.