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Alphen aan den Rijn, Archeon

The museum park Archeon in Alphen aan den Rijn (Netherland) is always worth a visit. It contains many reconstructions of Dutch buildings from Prehistory, Antiquity, and Middle Ages. For example, you can have a drink in the mansio (inn) near the base of the Tenth legion Gemina at Ulpia Noviomagus/Nijmegen.

When it was opened in 1994, the park was intended to do archaeological research, which would be financed from the proceeds of the visits, but this turned out to be too optimistic, and for one winter, Archeon was closed. The water pipes of the reconstructed bathhouse of Coriovallum/Heerlen were damaged beyond repair, and it is now no longer possible to have a bath and a massage in that building – which used (among Dutch archaeologists) to be a favorite way to celebrate birthdays.

After this crisis, the park was reopened on a smaller scale (1997). Gone is the reconstructed farm of Rijswijk-De Bult, gone are the plans to rebuild an entire castellum; but still, you can visit a lot of reconstructions of buildings that once dominated the towns in the Netherlands, like the small temple that was excavated at Ceuclum/Cuijk. The Roman bridge at Cuijk, which used to be the entrance of the park, still exists, but is almost impossible to find.

When we visited the museum park in 2008, it was a quiet day in spring. The children that can under normal circumstances produce more noise than you can imagine, were at school, and those who were at the park, enjoyed the gladiatoral contests. So, the photos I can present here are without twenty-first century additions. This is what the Netherlands must have looked like at the beginning of our era.

This museum was visited in a/o 1994, 2008.

6 pictures related to this museum

This page was last modified on 27 March 2014.