Museum Kaap Skil is a versatile museum about Texel’s maritime history. The name refers to the shipping and the location of the museum. A Kaap is a beacon for ships, an important navigational mark on land. The impressive museum entrance building can rightly be called a beacon, a Kaap. Skil is the Texel name for the Oudeschild, the fishing village where Kaap Skil is located.
The entrance building to Kaap Skil was awarded international prizes for the architecture and expositions. Behind the building is an open-air museum with authentically decorated fishermen’s cottages, a grain mill, beachcombing and various exhibits.
In the broadest sense, Kaap Skil is about life with, about, at and along the sea. There are exhibits about the fisheries, shipping, beachcombing and the importance of Texel during the Golden Age. In the VOC days, Texel was an important hub for shipping. The Roads of Texel lay off the coast of Oudeschild, the largest anchorage in the world. These days come to life on and around the lifelike model, where 160 miniature ships give a good impression of what it looked like. In the exposition Underwater Archeology, hundreds of surfaced objects are displayed, originating from ships which sank centuries ago on the Roads of Texel. Buried under the sand, the shipwrecks and their cargo have been preserved.
Kaap Skil has an exceptional history. It began as a one-time exhibit of surfaced objects from divers and beach finds from beachcombers. It was such a success that it was decided to look for a permanent location. In 1981, the Maritime & Jutters Museum was established. This is the forerunner of the present Museum Kaap Skil. The cooperation of the divers and beachcombers has continued of the years. The themes of the museum continue to expand, for example with the exhibits about fisheries, crafts, old ships and the Texel ferry service. When a new entrance hall was built in 2014, the name was changed.