Ermak Travel Guide


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Location: Wierdijk 12- 22, Enkhuizen    Map

Tel. 0228- 351111


Apr- Oct: 10am- 5pm daily

Nov- Mar: 10am- 5pm Tue- Sun

Closed: 1 Jan, 25 Dec

Official site




Description of Zuiderzeemuseum

Zuiderzeemuseum is a historic settlement in the town of Enkhuizen in West-Frisia region of Netherlands. The city of Zuiderzeemuseum used to be an important sea port, but after construction of Afsluitdijk causeway in 1930's it lost its importance. Zuiderzeemuseum consists of open air museum known as the Buitenmuseum and the Binnenmuseum that is devoted to shipping heritage, farming, fishing and general way of life. The Buitenmuseum consists of more than 130 different buildings, both residential and various workshops, that were brought here from all over the region. It was meant to represent traditional way of life that was common in late 19th century, although some structures date back as far as the 17th century. Residents of the Zuiderzeemuseum village also wear dresses that were common in the time period.




The forerunner of the museum is an exhibition on the Zuiderzee, which was shown in 1930 in Wilhelminapark in Enkhuizen. On display were cardboard houses and residents in traditional costume from the villages around the Zuiderzee. The Second World War then prevented further development for the time being.

In May 1947, the Association of Friends of the Zuiderzee Museum was founded and on January 16, 1948, the Royal Decree establishing the Rijksmuseum Zuiderzee Museum was signed. The first director of the museum was Jan Bouma, who during his time as director of the Dutch Open-Air Museum in Arnhem between 1942 and 1948 had already worked on the plans for a museum on life around the former Zuiderzee. In 1950 the Binnenmusem was opened.

The Binnenmuseum consists of a series of 17th-century buildings preserved and reconstructed in situ, some of which were formerly used by the Dutch East India Company. The main attraction is the "Schepenhal" (ship hall) with an exhibition of historical boats from the formerly important fishery in the Zuiderzee as well as some ships for the sailing sport. Among these boats is the Sperwer (Sperber), a Boeier that was once owned by the English adventurer Merlin Minshall. He used this boat to sail his honeymoon from England across the Danube to the Black Sea in the 1930s. Later he repeated the journey for the English secret service. To see is still a historic "Midzwaardjacht".

In addition, other exhibits from the Zuiderzeeregion can be seen. Among other things, paintings, furniture, tools, costumes and a documentation about whaling.


Buitenmuseum (open-air museum)
In the outdoor area, a typical Zuiderzee town and a fishing village from the period between 1700 and 1900 were built. The numerous buildings are not all from the Enkhuizen area, but were brought to the museum from various locations around the IJsselmeer.

The open-air museum in Enkhuizen was opened on May 6, 1983, the part of the Zuiderzee Museum by Queen Beatrix. The site was previously used by the Zuiderzee factories as a storage area for the construction of the dam to Lelystad. The first building, owned by the Zuiderzee Museum in 1948, was the home of Hindeloopen. It stands today on the dam to the harbor and houses since 2016 a cafe.

The open-air museum consists of several parts: the Markerhaven, the Kirchdorf, the Stadsgracht, the polder, the lime kiln, a water playground for children and a nature area with picnic area, a duckbill house and a reconstruction of a West Frisian farm from the Bronze Age. Next to the lime kiln is the harbor, where the boats coming from the parking lot are located.

The harbor Markerhaven is a scaled down copy of the harbor of the former island of Marken which was created there in 1840. In the harbor area are also several buildings from Marken, Volendam and Monnickendam. Among them is a slaughterhouse, the reconstruction of the Sibirian residence from Marken, a reconstruction of the Heller shed from Marken and a reconstruction of a shipyard whose original is in the Dutch Open Air Museum in Arnhem.

The access from the harbor to the Kirchdorf is via a narrow street, which was created on the model of the Vuldnerstraat in Harderwijk. This leads over a bascule bridge and has as a resident a candy shop, a basket maker and a blacksmith shop.

The first building erected for the open-air museum was the Gasthuiskapel, the chapel of the medieval infirmary in Den Oever. The chapel was rebuilt in the local situation after the model of the church in Oosterend on Texel. Around the chapel is the church village with post office, bank, printing house, and several craft shops.

To the east of the Kirchdorf borders the Stadsgracht (moat). It is a twentieth century shopping street of towns and villages and has been built on the western side as an example of an urban style as a shopping street. On this page are a butcher, an original cheese warehouse from Landsmeer, a pastry shop and a pharmacy with the famous "Gaper". On the other hand, it is built in Frisian with a rural character. On this site are a number of houses, an agricultural bank and another steam laundry.

Behind the Frisian part of the Stadsgracht is the fishing village. The structure of the fishing village is a nearly identical replica of the structure of the village Zoutkamp of Groningen. A number of buildings from Zoutkamp could be rebuilt in their original place. Other houses in the village come from the towns of Urk, Moddergat, Vollenhove, Kampen and Monnickendam. The Urker houses stand on a hill - just like in the original. The houses are furnished in the style of 1905. In a house a B├╝rstenmacherei is reconstructed.

In the north of the fishing village lies the polder, modeled after Savoren. Polders are usually below sea level, which means a permanent fight against the water. In the polder stands a mill that, if the water level of the ditch becomes too high, can pump the water upwards. An Archimedean screw demonstrates how the Dutch dehydrated the soil. In the polder stands the fisherman's cottage from Koehool. In this fish is smoked. For museum visitors there is the possibility to ride on a field barge. On these boats, the farmers transported their goods from the field to the yard until the 20th century.

On the other side of the fishing village is a large lime kiln. In these ovens mussel shells were burnt together with hard coal or peat to quicklime. After the mussel shells were burned, the lime was brought to the fire station next to the large chimneys and extinguished with seawater. The lime was mainly used for the production of mortar and thus for the production of cement. Due to the availability of raw materials shellfish and water, these ovens were mostly built near the coast.





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