Backpacking to Europe – Part 17: Inside Muiderslot

Previously

After touring the garden, we decided to enter into Muiderslot or the Muiden castle and see what is has to offer. From the outside, the castle looks well-maintained. Before the entrance,  I saw a ticket vending machine for a free guided tour in English and Dutch. I chose the next available tour and collected the free ticket from the machine before proceeding to the bridge over the moat.

Ticket vending machine to get free tickets for the free guided tour.

Lepas jalan kat area taman, kitorang pun buat keputusan untuk masuk dalam Muiderslot, nak tengok apa ada kat dalam. Dari luar, memang nampak cantik istana ni. Sebelum masuk, aku nampak ada satu mesin tiket untuk free tour dalam bahasa Inggeris dan Belanda. Dah namanya free, siapa tak suka kan? Aku pun ambil 2 tiket untuk free tour.

The entrance – the bridge above the moat.

We entered into the castle and I was awed by its architecture, its design. Before visiting Muiderslot, the closest I had to visiting a castle was when I diligently watched Merlin TV shows. I had always imagined myself in such castle and finally, it came true.

The square.

Masuk-masuk je dalam Muiderslot, mak aih, lawanya. Memang aku sangat kagum dengan senireka istana ni. Sebelum ni mampu tengok dalam drama Merlin je. Tak sangka, dapat juga tengok depan mata sendiri.

View from the square.

Muiderslot is well maintained as the castle is usually used by TV productions for medieval TV shows. Apart from that, many chambers are turned into galleries filled with fun activities especially for young children. It even has a cafeteria on the lower floor and the toilet is so magnificently built to ensure that it does not damaged the original structure.

The ornament above the well in the middle of the square.

Muiderslot memang terjaga rapi sebab istana ni selalu digunakan untuk pengambaran filem atau drama yang berkonsepkan zaman Medieval. Kebanyakan bilik-bilik dalam istana ni dah diubahsuai jadi galeri yang ada banyak aktiviti terutamanya untuk budak-budak. Kat tingkat bawah siap ada kafeteria dan yang paling stylo, toilet dia dibina macam style fusion – moden digabungkan dengan senibina asal istana ni.

The dining chamber.

After walking aimlessly at the castle’s square, it was time for the free guided tour. The tour guide, whom I will address as Mrs M was very fluent in English and Dutch, the latter being her mother tongue. She told us the rules and regulations, one of them being “only photos of your group is allowed when taking photos”.

The fireplace area in one of the so-called living halls.

Lepas dah jalan-jalan kat kawasan dataran istana, tibalah masa untuk free tour. Tour guide tu nama dia Mrs M, memang fasih berbahasa Inggeris dan Belanda. Sebelum mula tour, dia bagitahu peraturan-peraturan tour ni. Yang paling ditekankan “bila ambil gambar, ambil gambar group sendiri aje”, kata dia.

Painting of Muiderslot in its heyday.

Mrs M then lead us into the entrance door and we visited chambers after chambers; dining hall, sleeping chambers, meeting chambers and so on and so forth. She explained the history of the castle, where Muiderslot was built by a noble man, Count Floris V back in 1280 and it was just a simple castle back then. Years after years, conflict after conflict, Muiderslot then became one of the most beautiful castles across the Netherlands.

Painting of people who used to be in Muiderslot.

Mrs M pun bawa kami ke pintu masuk bilik pertama dan kami pergi dari bilik ke bilik; ruang makan, ruang tidur, ruang perjumpaan dan semua bilik-bilik lain yang ada. Dia terangkan kat semua pengunjung yang Muiderslot ni dibina tahun 1280 oleh Count Floris V. Bermula dengan sebuah istana yang kecil, sampailah ia jadi segah dan secantik sekarang.

View from the upper floors.

She explained how the meal was served in the castle back then, with bread as the main servings. In the spice chamber, she told us about how precious spices were that the King commanded the people to have a voyage to Asia for spices (hence the colonisation of Indonesia and Malacca by the Dutch). Mrs M showed the boxes where they used to keep spices and it was locked with a large padlock.

In the sleeping chamber. Notice the painting, in Malay culture, we call that as ‘bedong’. – to wrap the baby to ensure that the bones are correctly aligned, if I am not mistaken.

Dia terangkan lagi, macam mana makanan disediakan dulu-dulu, dengan roti jadi hidangan utama. Dalam bilik rempah, dia terangkan betapa bernilainya rempah sampaikan rempah disimpan dalam peti besi yang berkunci. Patutlah sampai ke Melaka dan Indonesia orang Belanda datang cari rempah dulu.

A few seconds before everyone stared at me.

Sometimes, I listened to Mrs M’s explanations and some other times, I was busy taking photos. Too busy that I forgot her rules until, when I was taking some photos and videos, I heard: “photos and videos of your group only” from her and everyone was literally looking at me. Oh my. Sorry Mrs M!

The walkway to the other side of the castle.

Kadang-kadang, aku dengar pada penerangan Mrs M. Kadang-kadang, aku dok sibuk ambil gambar dan video. Punyalah khusyuk aku ambil gambar dan video sampailah tiba-tiba dengar suara Mrs M cakap “kan saya dah kata. Kumpulan sendiri aje!”. Terus semua orang pandang aku lepas tu. Malu weyhhhh. Hahaha.

View from one of the towers.

After the free guided tour, we continued walking and exploring other parts of the castle not covered by the tour. We spent a good 2 hours at Muiderslot and by 2.30 pm, we head back to the bus stop to catch the bus and train back to Amsterdam.

Bidding farewell to Muiderslot.

Lepas selesai free tour, kitorang terus explore bilik-bilik dan kawasan-kawasan lain yang tak dicover oleh free tour. Dalam 2 jam juga kami spend masa kat Muiderslot. Dalam pukul 2.30 petang, kitorang patah balik ke bus stop untuk balik ke Amsterdam.

Playing with the melting snow at the bus stop.

The 110 bus arrived late (we waited for almost an hour) and whilst waiting, I played with the melting snow. In front of the bus stop are some houses and I could see some families went out of their home and making snowmen. It was fun to see how these people spent time with their family members during winter time.

Punyalah lambat bas 110 tu sampai, dekat sejam juga kitorang tunggu. Sambil-sambil tunggu tu, aku dok main slide-slide dekat salji yang dah mula cair. Depan bus stop pula ada rumah-rumah orang, seronok tengok ada satu famili ni dok buat orang salji ramai-ramai. Pandai diorang spend quality time dengan keluarga.

Wrong sequence but anyhow, do you know that this used to be the toilet? All waste will go down into the moat.

When we reached Amsterdam Centraal from Weesp, we went back to BnB ZOH with rush because we promised to collect our bags at 4.00 pm but it was already 4.45 pm. We took Metro Line 54 from Bullewijk to Biljmer Areena to kill some time since our Eurolines bus to Berlin would only depart at 10.00 pm.

Toko de Poort. 3 hours were spent here.

Elok je bas sampai, kitorang pergi balik ke stesen keretapi dan ambil keretapi ke Amsterdam Centraal dan cepat-cepat naik metro ke BnB ZOH. Janji nak ambil beg pukul 4.00 petang, masa tu je dah dekat 4.45 petang. Dah ambil beg semua, kami ambil Metro Line 54 dari Bullewijk ke Biljmer Areena untuk duduk lepak-lepak sebabnya bas Eurolines kami ke Berlin cuma akan bertolak pukul 10.00 malam.

We were looking for Halal eateries with wifi at Biljmer Areena area and there were a lot of halal eateries around. However, at 5.00 pm it was getting darker and many shops were starting to close. We were glad when we found Toko de Poort, a restaurant cum sundry shop selling Asian products since they were still opened and most important of all, they were selling mixed rice, just like at home! They even have wifi – Amira and I ended up sitting there for 3 hours – eating, Facetimed our families, browsing the Internet and just chilling. At 8.00 pm, we left Biljmer Areena by taking Metro Line 54 towards Gein and stopping at Duivendrecht.

Cravings satisfied! On day 3.

Kitorang dok melilau cari makanan halal dan kedai ada wifi kat Biljmer Areena. Banyak kedai halal sebenarnya tapi sebab dah pukul 5.00 petang, banyak kedai dah tutup. Nasib baik kitorang jumpa satu kedai nama Toko de Poort ni. Dia kedai makan + kedai runcit. Yang bestnya sebab kedai ni jual makanan Indonesia dan rupanya macam nasi campur kita. Terus aku bantai ambil nasi, tempe, telur. Legaaaaaaa! Dah lah ada wifi, aku dan Amira pun melepak kat situ adalah dalam 3 jam. Dalam pukul 8.00 malam, kami pergi balik ke stesen Metro Biljmer Areena dan ambil Metro Line 54 menghala ke Gein untuk turun kat Duivendrecht.

More photos:

Next: Part 18

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Have you gone to any castle anywhere in this world?

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