Explore 9 North Brabant castles

By: Anne Culture lover | Read time: 7 minutes
  • Bezoekers lopen naar binnen bij Kasteel Heeswijk
  • Kasteel Helmond
  • Kasteel Heeze van boven af gezien
  • Voorkant Kasteel Maurick

North Brabant takes you closer to the world of knights and noblewomen. Enchanting castles in the middle of the countryside transport you to the Brabant of the Middle Ages. The province even has some of the most beautiful castles in the Netherlands. During a museum visit or guided tour, you get a unique glimpse into castle life. Outside, decorative castle grounds and vast estates provide a wonderful day out in the countryside. There is always a city nearby and located on lovely walking and cycling routes!

1. Heeswijk Castle

  • Kasteel Heeswijk met deel van de tuin
  • Kasteel Heeswijk van boven af gezien
  • Kasteel Heeswijk gezien vanaf de ingang

Heeswijk castle is only a 15-minute drive from the historic city of 's-Hertogenbosch. With a lovely drawbridge, moat, castle towers, neatly landscaped gardens and a fantastic interior, it’s no wonder that this is one of the most beautiful castles in the Netherlands. Children discover the castle’s treasures during a fun treasure hunt. The estate itself is a wonderful place for walking and cycling. Heeswijk Castle is an official Nature Gate and on the Heeswijk-Dinther Monastery Trail. Bij de Barones in Het Koetshuis (The Coach House) is the perfect spot to enjoy a cup of coffee, lunch or a drink. Cyclists are warmly welcomed here as it is an official Brabant Bicycle Café.

2. Helmond Castle

The largest moated castle in the Netherlands

The largest moated castle in the Netherlands

When visiting Helmond you can’t escape the impressive Helmond Castle: the largest moated castle in the Netherlands. You walk right into the museum from the castle garden. It’s an exceptional experience, as Helmond Castle is one of the best-preserved castles in the Netherlands. In Museum Helmond you are taken on a trip through time and experience the castle stories. The museum is also a great outing for children, as they meet castle inhabitants on the way and the thrilling ‘Castle on Fire!’ tour takes you to the centuries-old attic.

Kasteel Helmond Expositie Museum Helmond

3. Maurick Castle

Maurick Castle is another enchanting castle. It’s in a unique setting on an island on River Dommel, near 's-Hertogenbosch. Cross the moat over the drawbridge and enter the castle’s inner courtyard. To see the castle from inside, book a table at the à la carte restaurant Hendrik van Maurick or Brasserie Catharina. Complete your visit with an overnight stay in one of the three suites. The forested area around the castle is wonderful for walking.

4. Heeze Castle

  • Kasteel Heeze van boven af gezien

Heeze Castle is amid the vast forests and heathlands. It is one of the last inhabited castles in the Netherlands. This National Monument consists of two parts: the medieval Eymerick Castle and the newer 17th century castle, both with their own inner courtyard. The interior contains almost entirely authentic furniture and there is an impressive collection of paintings to admire. The castle is not open to visitors, but you can go on a guided tour on Wednesdays and Sundays. That can easily be combined with a walk or bicycle ride through the beautiful surroundings. The TOP Scenic Cycle Route Strabrechtse Heide takes you past the castle as well as through the Hubertusbossen (forest) and over the Strabrechtse Heide.

5. Loon op Zand Castle

Loon op Zand Castle, also called the White Castle, is near the Loon and Drunen Dunes National Park. You can book a guided tour around this historical manor with moat. The old ramparts, the herb garden, kitchen garden and orchard make it well worth a visit. Exhibitions and concerts are also held here regularly. You can have a unique overnight stay in one of the luxury holiday homes on the estate. And if you are around on Sunday, go for lunch or a drink in Café Het Koetshuis.

Een foto van Kiki Brouwers.

"The White Castle also plays a major role in the thrilling folk tale The White Feather GangDiscover the story and enjoy the beautiful countryside on the eponymous cycle route, which is all about this saga.’"

Also visit:

6. Dussen Castle

Charming Dussen Castle, located near De Biesbosch National Park, looks as if it has come from a picture book. This castle’s history goes back to the 14th century. The castle is not open to visitors, but you can book a guided tour. Activities are also held here such as concerts and theatrical performances. A visit to Dussen Castle can easily be combined with a day out in the Biesbosch. Visit the Biesbosch MuseumEiland, go on a boat trip on a whisper boat or follow the TOP Scenic Cycle Route Biesbosch. A full day out in Brabant!

7. Breda Castle

Royal visit

Royal visit

The descendants of the House of Oranje-Nassau used to live in Breda Castle. It now houses the Royal Military Academy (KMA). The castle is therefore only accessible during guided tours organised by the Breda Tourist Information Office. You have an amazing view of the main building from Valkenberg Park. The castle is on the Zuiderwaterlinie footpath (southern water line footpath). This route follows a unique chain of 11 of Brabant’s fortified towns and their outskirts, which are all linked by the typical Dutch use of water as a defence.

The castle and medieval inner city of Breda can also be explored by bike on the Van GoghCycle Route Breda. It takes you past the picturesque Bouvigne Castle located along the Markdal and the Mastbos. It’s a true paradise for cyclists!

Kasteel Breda Kasteel Breda vanuit park Valkenburg

8. Tongelaar Castle

  • Kasteel Tongelaar

Go on a lovely bike ride through the Land van Cuijk, in the northeast of Brabant, and you will feel like you have landed in the French countryside. Enjoy the beautiful Tongelaar Castle and Benedenhof Farm in peace and quiet on the tranquil and vast Tongelaar Estate in Mill. The castle is open to visitors on Wednesdays and Sundays. You can also enjoy a delicious lunch here and even spend the night at the holiday farm on the estate. The Monastery Trail, Velp – Sint Agatha stage, is a tip for those who enjoy walking. It’s a long 26-kilometre trail that as well as taking you past Tongelaar Castle also includes old monasteries and churches.

9. Boxmeer Castle

Boxmeer Castle is located on the border of Germany and the Province of Limburg. This fortress, on a former island on the Maas, was repeatedly besieged, destroyed and rebuilt for centuries. During a visit you learn all about the castle’s rich history, its former noble inhabitants and the nuns that currently reside in the castle. The Castle Museum is open on the first Sunday of the month and it’s a great stop-over location during a day of walking or cycling in the surrounding area. Boxmeer Castle is on the Monastery Trail, Sint-Agatha – Boxmeer stage.

Walking tip in the vicinity:

Walking and cycling past castles in North Brabant

  • Besides these nine castles, North Brabant has many more beautiful castles and estates. They are not all open to the public but there are definitely worth visiting during a day in the countryside. For example, Stapelen Castle in Boxtel, Haageind Castle Grounds in Deurne or  Henkenshage Castle in Sint-Oedenrode, which is located on the Brabant Fen Path.
  • Geldrop Castle, Asten Castle, Gemert Castle and Nemerlaer Castle in Haaren are partially open to visitors during a guided tour. Nemerlaer Castle is also a Nature Gate and the starting point of wonderful walking or cycling trails through the Nemerlaer Estate, the Kampina or Oisterwijk Forests and Fens.
  • A unique overnight stay awaits motorhome campers at Camperplaats Croy in Aarle-Rixtel. Here you wake up in the back garden of the enchanting Croy Castle. It can easily be combined with the Monastery Trail, Aarle-Rixtel – Eindhoven stage.
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