In Search of the Tomb Builders

Take a journey through 150,000 years at the Hunebed Centre and come face to face with prehistory. Your journey through time begins in the Ice Ages when the landscape was first shaped by wind and ice. You will discover the first people who settled here centuries later and learn how they left their own mark on the landscape. See how our ancestors lived and worked here for thousands of years.

Your visit to the Hunebed Centre begins inside the museum with the story of the hunebed builders. Hunebeds are ancient prehistoric tombs built over 5,000 years ago, which means that they are older than the Egyptian Pyramids and older than Stonehenge. They are called ‘hunebeds’ because in the past people thought that they were the beds of giants or ‘hunen’.

So if they weren’t giants, who were the people who built these massive tombs? The museum takes you into their world, to the time around 3,400 BC when people first settled in one place and took up farming. A world with little groups of houses and small fields dotted in the landscape, settlements surrounded by a barren land which was home to wild animals like wolves, bears and aurochs. How did the tomb builders survive in such a landscape? And how did they build these amazing stone monuments which still survive today? The Hunebed Centre brings them to life with stories and adventures for visitors of all ages.

You can’t get closer to Prehistory than here at the Hunebed Centre.

Discover Prehistoric Drenthe in the Hunebed Centre

This northern area of the Netherlands – the Province of Drenthe – is the oldest part of the country. A visit to the Hunebed Centre is essential if you want to learn more about the prehistoric world which once existed here.

Star attractions

The star attraction at the Hunebed Centre is undoubtedly the largest hunebed in the Netherlands, 22.6 metres long. Built before the Pyramids of Egypt, older even than Stonehenge, this massive stone monument is the place where any history lesson has to start.

Other attractions which should not be missed include the house of a family of hunebed builders; the fields where they grew their corn and other crops; the distinctive funnel-shaped beakers which they made and their polished axes.
And there are many other things to discover in the Hunebed Centre.