Rechteren Castle was built in the 13th century, however today only the 30 meter high tower remains of this first castle. The current appeance dates from the early 14th century. Today the castle is still occupied by the Van Heeckerens family which has been in possession of the castle since the 1300s.
Throughout the century, the castle has undergone numerous renovations and has been rebuilt due to siege. With 40 rooms and halls throughout the castle, renovations were commonplace. In fact, Prince Maurits dismantled much of the castle in 1591 so that the Spaniards would not be able to use it as a strategic advantage during their invasion. The outer walls of the castle were demolished as well as the canal.
In the 18th century, the castle’s entrance would be changed with two additional wings being added. During this time, renovations occurred that changed the castle into a neo-Gothic style. This renovation would not last long as in 1953, the neo-Gothic style was completely changed back to remove all signs that a neo-Gothic style ever existed. Little is known about the interior of the castle as it has been privately owned for its duration. Sparse photographs of the inside have been shown that dictate marvelous paintings of the family as well as their coat of arms.
Other regions have been rebuilt throughout the centuries and date to the 17th century onward. The castle is currently occupied and privately owned. While some pictures have been released to the public that hint at what the inside may look like, the castle has never been open for tours. Many hotels have been located around the castle so that visitors will be able to snap pictures from afar during their time in Overijssel.References:
The Old Town in Aarhus, Denmark (Den Gamle By), is an open-air town museum consisting of 75 historical buildings collected from 20 townships in all parts of the country. In 1914 the museum opened as the world's first open-air museum of its kind, concentrating on town culture rather than village culture, and to this day it remains one of just a few top rated Danish museums outside Copenhagen.
The museum buildings are organized into a small town of chiefly half-timbered structures originally erected between 1550 and the late 19th century in various parts of the country and later moved to Aarhus during the 20th century. In all there are some 27 rooms, chambers or kitchens, 34 workshops, 10 groceries or shops, 5 historical gardens, a post office, a customs office, a school and a theatre.
The town itself is the main attraction but most buildings are open for visitors; rooms are either decorated in the original historical style or organized into larger exhibits of which there are 5 regular with varying themes. There are several groceries, diners and workshops spread throughout the town with museum staff working in the roles of town figures i.e. merchant, blacksmith etc. adding to the illusion of a 'living' town.