Wednesday, December 5, 2007

The Race is On…To the Castle

It was time to get back on the horse, metaphorically speaking. I had not toed a starting line of any sort of race since Badwater in July, so I registered for a 15 km running race (9.3 miles) located in the oddly-named town of ‘s-Heerenberg, about 80 miles east of Amsterdam, on the German border. Click HERE to read all of the sordid details of the race.

We had foolishly expected another sunny day (see previous post about our trip to Texel Island), but we're we wrong! It was rained buckets most of the day. Stacey and the kids hung out in a snack shop during the race, but they were already soaked to the bone.

Luckily, the adventure was worth the drive. After the race and a warm shower for Dad, it was on to the family portion of our daily program, a visit to ‘s-Heerenberg’s biggest tourist attraction…

…a medieval CASTLE.

The kids were thrilled, even at the mention of the castle (that’s actually how we “sold” the trip to them). Cole was obsessed with questions about the bad guys, and loved trying on pieces of the armor and holding swords. Maya kept trying to figure out where the king and queen slept, ate, etc. (and princesses/princes as well), but she really loved the armor and skeletons a lot too. The Kasteel Huis Bergh is surrounded by a moat, and it’s a building that goes back as far as the 13th century. It’s filled with an impressive collection of early Italian paintings, medieval manuscripts, and an immense collection of period coins.

But the structure itself was the most impressive feature. We were treated to a private tour of the castle tower, where we were able to hold replica swords. Here are the kids trying out some Spanish-style armor:

Winding staircases and narrow passageways led us to the roof of the tower, where visitors are treated to an impressive view of the town and surrounding countryside. It’s not too difficult to imagine that you are a 14th-century sentry on the lookout for marauders.

Check out the castle online at

1 comment:

STP said...

Wow you look tuff Greg!!