For centuries, the Guldendal was part of the farm belonging to the Prinsenkasteel. This castle farm was constructed in the 17th century. The so-called stables, which currently constitute the Guldendal, were remodelled and restored numerous times during the 20th century. They were purchased by the municipality of Grimbergen in 1978 and have served as the main building of the museum since 1980. It is the museum’s administrative seat and the base of operations of its staff.

On the Guldendal location, the museum has established a smithy and a shoeing stock for smithing demonstrationsThere is a natural play area in front of the building where the children can play in the green. Behind the building is a well which is used during the Water Wells Workshop. In 2022 we will start with the construction of a brand new half-timbered workshop at the back of the Guldendal.

Ruins of the Prinsenkasteel

At a stone’s throw of the Guldendal, in the middle of the Prinsenbos pond, the vestiges of the Prinsenkasteel loom high above the trees. A water castle surrounded by a park and other properties, this once mighty bastion used to be the home of the lords of Grimbergen after their fortress at the Borcht burned down during the Wars of Grimbergen (12th century). The castle has undergone many refurbishings over the course of the centuries.

In 1944, retreating German soldiers set fire to the castle, after which it declined further into a ruin. Only the castle keep, i.e. the fortified residential area, remained intact and is currently being restored. Once the restoration works are completed, this tower will be repurposed as a part of the museum.

Here you'll find some 3D computer drawings created by students of the UCL Brussels.

Near the Guldendal

Since 2013, a mill has stood turning gently in the wind on the roundabout on Prinsenstraat. It is a wind turbine: a metal windmill that turns to face the wind and can therefore run unmanned. Since the 19th century, such mills have been widely used to drain polders, pump water or generate electricity.

The MOT has set up this wind turbine not just to attract people’s notice, but also as a good example of the use of wind power as a natural source of energy.

Nativity scene

half-timbered workspace


the MOT, Section Guldendal - Guldendal 20, 1850 Grimbergen
Tel. +32 2 270 81 11 –