Many of these lavish homesteads and their sprawling gardens were constructed in the 17th century by wealthy merchants.One such manor is Castle Nyenrode. The castle’s impressive arch, drawbridge and waterway once protected its owner from unwanted house guests and visitors. These features are still effective to this very day. The castle currently houses a private university and is unavailable for tours. Nevertheless, Breukelen, the namesake of the New York City borough of Brooklyn, is also a great spot for boat tours, bicycle treks, or just an afternoon of sightseeing.