Welcome to the Hessenpark, the Open-Air Museum of the State of Hesse
Delve into a fascinating world of more than 400 years of rural life in Hesse. This includes originally furnished houses, permanent exhibitions – e.g. about tower clocks, a historical post office and glass smelting – as well as historical craft and farming technique presentations and a great variety of events. On nearly 150 acres and in over 100 historical buildings the Hessenpark Open-Air Museum offers you a unique opportunity to experience at close quarters how people lived and worked in days gone by.
In addition to an unparalleled collection of Hessian timberframed architecture, the Hessenpark Open-Air Museum presents immediate insights into everyday rural culture in Hesse. History is brought to life in this living museum. Situated amidst the idyllic Taunus hills, the Rhine-Main region’s popular nature and recreation area, the Hessenpark is an ideal destination for family excursions.
The Open-Air Museum: Hesse, the way it was
Since 1974, more than 100 endangered buildings have been re-erected in accordance with scientific standards at the Hessenpark Open-Air Museum. The buildings in the Museum have been divided into five groups, each group representing a Hessian type of settlement typical of its region of origin. Houses and farmsteads from different villages have been placed as to give a realistic impression of the social and economic situation in the respective region.
The houses are utilised in a variety of ways. In part they are home to permanent and special exhibitions, whilst others have been furnished with original furniture and household items. In addition, you can also visit our historical workshops in the buildings.
Opening dates & Admission prices
1st March till 31st October:
Daily from 09:00 to 18:00
1st November till 28th February:
Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 to 17:00
Last admission one hour before closing time. Guided tours are available all year upon request.The market place with its shops and restaurants is open all year.
Admission in Euro:
Groups of 7 or more adults 7.50 per person
Groups of 20 or more adults 6.50 per person
Family ticket* 16.00
Children (6-15 years) 2.50
Pupils, students 2.50
Handicapped persons 4.00
* Parents or a parent with child/children aged between 6 and 15 years.
Admission free for children up to and including 5 years.
Rural Craft Demonstrations
Not only have the tools and machinery of old rural crafts been preserved at the Open-Air Museum, but also traditional working techniques: In numerous demonstrations you can see craftsmen working their trades in original surroundings. Next to agriculture, craftsmanship was the main source of income in Hesse’s villages.
The various trades were geared to the production of goods required for agricultural work or in the household and which could not be manufactured by the farmers themselves. Hence, in rural areas there were blacksmiths, wainwrights, carpenters and millers. You can encounter these and many other old trades in the Open-Air Museum.
Museum Education: Experiencing history
We offer projects covering many different topics, providing children with the opportunity of learning about country life. Everyone has the chance to make their own personal experience with historical objects, materials and working methods. In this way they gain an understanding of what everyday life was like. Most projects begin with a guided tour followed by practical participation in groups, thus encouraging social interaction.
By following the new Forest Discovery Trail, both young and old can find out how the forest was utilised in the past. The information explained on the notice boards can be tried and tested immediately. This encourages a playful interaction with the principles of sustainable forestry.
Those who are looking to celebrate a child’s birthday with a difference will find offers to suit all age groups and interests. Knowledge is imparted in such an interesting and lively way, ensuring that there will be no lack of enjoyment among the participants. During the Hessian school holidays, children can discover for themselves, the ways of traditional country life through holiday programmes, hands-on activities and demonstrations.
Some of the museum projects are also available for adult groups. From package deals which include thematic tours and a culinary offer, up to activity offers, there is certain to be something to suit all tastes. Groups can take part in smith craft, rope making and timber-framed house construction.
Exhibitions: Keeping abreast of history
At present, more than thirty lively, permanent exhibitions are on show in several buildings and outside facilities. The spectrum ranges from historical printing techniques to Hessian landscape painting, on to an exhibition on traditional folk costumes. In addition, there are buildings furnished in the style of a certain era, as well as many facilities such as cottage gardens, beehives and wayside crosses.
Furthermore, several special exhibitions take place each year.
Agenda of Events
The Agenda of Events 2014 with informations about the museum, events, exhibitions and rural craft demonstrations you can download here.