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Court of the Netherlands

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Museum about our freedom in the Netherlands, past and present.

In the Court, through stories of courage, resistance and resilience, you will discover that freedom and equality were and are not always obvious to everyone. In the Netherlands, being free is very important; it is deeply rooted in our country's identity. In the Court you get a picture of the continuous pursuit of freedom through the centuries. And is there so much more freedom now than in the past? Or is it different than in the past?

Journey through time

In a medieval, former monastery, wander through various spaces where you travel back through time and follow the story of freedom in the Netherlands. Important historical events illustrate the drive for freedom through the ages. In 1572, for example, an important step was taken for freedom in the Netherlands. In fact, at this site a secret meeting was organized by twelve Dutch cities at the invitation of William of Orange. The Court discussed how to proceed with the Dutch revolt against Spain and freedom of religion and conscience. That makes this place unique. You will also come across other historical stories during your time travel, for example about the National Synod of 1618-1619, the De Witt brothers, World War II, women's emancipation and today's current events: about freedom, which today's newspapers are full of almost daily. Free spirits, including Raven van Dorst, will guide you around and give their own contemporary perspective on the concept of freedom. And in various places we challenge you to discuss questions and dilemmas with each other. In this way you will discover what freedom means to you and to someone else.

Activities for young and old

Voor de jongste bezoekers is er een speciale kindertour waar zij de Griffioen, die in het wapen van Dordrecht staat, uit zijn fantasiewereld kunnen bevrijden. Ook is er een escape tour ‘De zoektocht van de sleutelgilden’ voor jong en oud, waarbij sleutels gevonden moeten worden door puzzels op te lossen en zo toegang te krijgen tot de IJzeren kast waar de privileges opgeborgen liggen. Kijk hier voor meer informatie over de kindertour of voor het organiseren van een kinderfeestje in het Hof van Nederland.

Inspire and connect

Enabling dialogue and meeting between groups with different beliefs at a time when polarization is increasingly present is an important driving force for the museum. This is why the Court organizes various activities, such as HOF on Sunday and HOF Live. Hof on Sunday is a monthly day full of surprising activities on which Dordrechters can visit the museum at a reduced price. Each day has its own current theme. During HOF on Sunday , the museum gives visitors of all ages the chance to learn about the history and meaning of freedom in the Netherlands in an accessible way.

HOF Live is another of the Court's recurring events. It is a talk show where each edition discusses a different socially relevant topic with visitors. It is an evening filled with interesting speakers, dialogue, spoken word poetry and live music. These evenings end with drinks where people can talk afterwards.

Upcoming events

Eureka | Dordrecht inventions 07-10-2023 00:00
Indische Nieuwkomers 02-07-2024 10:00
Sport & Spel op het Hof 10-08-2024 10:00
Hof op zondag 25-08-2024 11:00
Hof op zondag 06-10-2024 11:00
See all events

Tips for visiting Court of Holland

Children

Liberated Griffin

Fun children's activity
With groups

The quest of the Key Guilds

Escape Tour
Groups

Guided tour with city walk

Reservations possible via Dagtochten Dordrecht

Escape Tour

The Quest of the Key Guilds is an escapetour through museum Hof van Nederland. You don't have to escape from anything and there is no time pressure. But beware: only if you manage to solve all the puzzles along the way will you find the keys to the Iron Castle. Which team will set the best score?

The story

It is 1648. There is chaos in the city. The city government and the guilds are on opposite sides. The mayors are trying to curb the power of the guilds. The guilds want to see the city's privileges, because they list their rights in black and white. These documents are stored in an Iron Castle. The six keys needed to open the cabinet are divided among the key guilds and hidden in the Court.

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