Park Wijlre

The Garden

The heart of today’s castle goes back to the second half of the 17th century: Johan Arnholt van Wachtendonk inherited rule here in 1652 and began building a new house soon afterwards. The oldest known map of this area is the Tranchot map, which dates from 1800-1853 and shows the house on a piece of land surrounded by a moat. A forecourt and two adjacent buildings are likewise located on this land. Strikingly, the house is approached from the side through the forecourt, an access route from the south which still exists today.


Around the moat is a rectangular area of land, which was probably used as a garden and which is likewise surrounded by water. To the north is yet another rectangular piece of land surrounded by water. This arrangement is reminiscent of Dutch classicism, which is typical of the 17th century. The gardens were probably created at the same time as the house was built.

During the 19th century, the landscape style also made its appearance at Wijlre. It is known that the architect Mathias Soiron (1748-1834) drew up some plans for the gardens from 1800-1810. A new landscape-style park was created outside the moat on the west side of the house.


VThe gardens to the east of the house were divided up into nine squares during the first half of the 20th century and these subdivisions still exist today. It is known from oral accounts that the garden designer John Bergmans (1892 - 1980) worked at Wijlre castle. Although the gardens were developed further during the 20th century, including the construction of terraces to the west of the house, the present-day gardens date for the most part from the period since 1980.


“Garden rooms” with widely differing designs were created under the direction of the present owner. They are separated by hedges and linked to each other by vistas. A symmetrical French ornamental garden was laid out on both sides of the approach driveway.

The gardens at Wijlre are much vaunted by garden lovers, above all due to the decorative rose garden and the flower garden with its tone in tone borders. Especially popular are the modern sculptures by Peter Struycken und Ad Dekkers as well as the walks around the house through the orchard and the landscape-style part of the park with its charming vistas.


Striking old trees include a ginkgo, a gleditsia (honey locust) and a liriodendron (tulip tree).

The “Hedge House” was built in 1999. Contemporary art and changing exhibitions are presented in this piece of modern architecture, which was designed by Wiel Arets. The whole complex is characterised by the harmony between the historical castle with its charming gardens and the contemporary design of the “Hedge House”. Together, they form an exceptional ensemble.