In the Dutch municipality of Hof van Twente in the province of Overijssel lies the Twickel estate. It is one of the best preserved castles in the Netherlands with an elaborately designed castle garden, orangery and extensive parkland. The so-called Umfassungsweg draws a circle around Twickel Castle on a walking route of eleven kilometers. This path was planned in 1890 by the German landscape architect Eduard Petzold to beautify the park. Petzold died in 1891 before the completion of the entire circular trail. It was not until 2011 that the loop trail, which still bears the name chosen by Petzold, Umfassungsweg, was completed.
Varied cultural landscape
The perimeter trail around Twickel Castle was largely laid out around 1890. The estate covers over 4000 hectares. From the castle, wooden posts with the letters UW point in the direction of the circular path. The idea of the garden architect Eduard Petzold was to use the Umfassungsweg to guide hikers through the entire diversity of the cultural landscape. The route begins with the parkland around the castle and then passes into woodland, semi-open meadows, leads through the Azelerbeek stream valley, along a boardwalk through what is now the Koematenveld nature reserve, across fields and past farms, and finally back to the village of Delden.
Eduard Petzold – sought-after garden architect of his time
Eduard Petzold expanded the landscape park on behalf of Baron Van Heeckeren van Wassenaer between 1885 and 1891. At that time, Petzold had long been considered one of the most successful garden designers in Europe. He did his apprenticeship with the park creator Hermann von Pückler Muskau, who is still considered a genius today. In addition to his great passion for garden design, the enterprising Prince Pückler was a successful writer and world traveler. The prince, it is said, had a great influence on the young Petzold. Early success as a garden architect also enabled Petzold, like his role model and patron Prince Pückler, to travel extensively for park studies. In 1852, Petzold was appointed park director of the Netherlands and remained so until 1872. According to his plans, the park of Twickel Manor was transformed by the addition of special trees and shrubs in large numbers and of a wide variety of species. Eduard Petzold died in 1891 before the full implementation of his garden plans for Twickel Manor. The relocation of the vegetable garden into a walled kitchen garden, where fruit, vegetables and flowers were grown, can still be seen today. Also, a first part of the enclosure path was still realized under Petzold and led along the outermost borders of the park. It was not until 120 years after his death that the perimeter path was completed. Today a worthwhile and varied hike.
The Twickel Estate
In addition to the castle and the extensive park, the Twickel estate contains more than 150 farms and intact buildings worth seeing, such as a watermill, an oil mill, a museum farm and a wagon maker’s workshop. Old oak trees alternate with hilly fields and pastures. The castle itself is first mentioned in 1347. Since that time it has always been inherited by the son or daughter on the father’s side of the family. In 1953 the castle and the park became a foundation. Twickel Castle is still inhabited and is open for visits only on selected days of the year. The park, orangery and vegetable garden are accessible all year round but at certain opening hours. More information about the Hof van Twente region and the Twickel estate.