Castles and fortifications in Germany

Ballmertshofen Castle

Castle The first castle on the site of current 16th century Ballmertshofen castle dates probably from the 12th Century. It is first mentioned in 1236 when Graf (Count) von Dillingen gave the castle to Neresheim Abbey. As a further evidence, in 1987 a cistern from this era was discovered under the south east wall of the castle. The castle changed hands several times in the following centuries. It was owned by the von H&uu ...
Founded: 16th century | Location: Ballmertshofen, Germany

Arras Castle

Burg Arras is located to the site of ancient Roman hill fort. It was first time mentioned in 1120, but probably built around 936 (the dungeon dates from that time). The castle has been owned by Palatine counts and bishop of Trier. It was destroyed by French army in the late 17th century and rebuilt in the 20th century. Today Burg Arras is a hotel and restaurant.
Founded: c. 936 AD | Location: Alf, Germany

Küssaburg Castle Ruins

Küssaburg is a ruined hilltop castle located in Bechtersbohl, a village in the municipality of Küssaberg. The name may be derived from the Roman personal name, Cossinius, or from the German Kissen (Alemannic Chüssi) which means 'cushion', after the shape of the mountain on which it stands. The hill castle is one of the most important historic buildings on the High Rhine and a landmark of the coun ...
Founded: 1125-1141 | Location: Bechtersbohl, Germany

Rabenstein Castle

Rabenstein Castle is the smallest medieval castle in Saxony. It is located in the Chemnitz suburb of Rabenstein and belongs to the Chemnitz Castle Hill Museum. The hill castle Rabenstein was first mentioned in 1336 in a document from Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor in which he promised it as a fief to his son-in-law Frederick II, Margrave of Meissen, in case the line of Waldenburg were to die out without male h ...
Founded: 14th century | Location: Chemnitz, Germany

Bladenhorst Castle

Bladenhorst castle was first mentioed in 1266 as the residence of the lords of Blarnhurst lived there. At the beginning of the 14th century it became the possession of the family of Düngelen. In 1338, Rötger Düngelen made the castle available to the Duchy of Cleves to use in the event of war. Through marriage, in 1496 the castle passed to Philip of Viermünden. From 1624 to 1881 it was inherited by the Westphalian ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Castrop-Rauxel, Germany

Klippenstein Castle

The history of the Klippenstein castle dates back to 1289 when it was first mentioned as 'Castrum Radeberch' in official records. From 1543 to 1546, Moritz of Saxony had the castle converted into a hunting lodge and residential palace. It is also among the most significant surviving examples of sovereign architecture built during the reign of Moritz Elector of Saxony, a famous ruler from the House of Wettin. Me ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Radeberg, Germany

Fürstlich Drehna Castle

Fürstlich Drehna Castle was originally built in the mid-16th century near to an old Slavic fortress by the family of Minckwitz. They constucted the surrounding moat and towers. The castle was acquired by the Promnitz family in 1697 and they also enlarged it. Today the closed four-wing castle with its beautiful park is a restaurant and hotel.
Founded: 16th century | Location: Luckau, Germany

Zwingenberg Castle

Zwingenberg Castle dates from the 13th century. In the 1326 the lords of Zwingenberg were mentioned as an owner. In 1364 the castle was conquered and destroyed by the imperial forces. The fortress and estate were then immediately divided in two equal parts and bought by the Palatinate and the archbishoprie of Mainz. The reconstruction of the castle was made by the brothers Hans and Eberhard of Hirschhorn in 1404. The brot ...
Founded: 1404 | Location: Zwingenberg, Germany

Gräfenstein Castle

Gräfenstein Castle was built by the Saarbrücken counts, who had lost their fortress and were in need of a new one. Evidence for the exact date of the castle's building does not exist although the earliest record dates to a 1237 deed of partition by the counts of Leiningen. But from the castle's design and materials it can be deduced that it was built sometime between 1150 and 1200. Another clue is in the date of the res ...
Founded: 1237 | Location: Merzalben, Germany

Inzlingen Castle

Inzlingen Castle is surrounded by a moat situated in the village of Inzlingen. The origins of the castle cannot be clearly dated. The first written evidence dated 1511 – at this time already a possession of a relative of the barons Reich von Reichenstein. This noble family hold fiefdoms from the Prince-Bishopric of Basel, the Margraviate of Baden and the House of Habsburg. A Prince-bishop of Basel, six mayors of Bas ...
Founded: 15th century | Location: Inzlingen, Germany

Neuenburg Castle

Schloss Neuenburg was built in 1462 as a fortress by Graf Gerd. In the 16th century, the castle was converted into a residence. In the 17th century, the castle was used for breeding horses and stallions. The castle was then used to house many institutions like the Ackerbauschule, Landfrauenschule, and Reservelazarett among many others. Today, the castle is home to a museum, a kindergarten, a chapel, and a wedding hall.
Founded: 1462 | Location: Neuenburg, Germany

Wesenberg Castle

Wesenberg Castle is a medieval motte-and-bailey castle. Of the original castle, only the bergfried tower and an adjacent part of the former ring wall survives. The castle was founded by Nicholas I of Werle during the middle of the 13th century, as protection for the city of Wesenberg. Among other things, the castle served as a residence for the widow of Duke Ulrich II of Mecklenburg-Stargard, Catherine. The castle was lar ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Wesenberg, Germany

Staufeneck Castle

When Ludwig von Staufen starts work on the construction of Staufeneck castle in 1080, he creates a family seat that will remain in the Hohenstaufen dynasty for 250 years. From 1333 until its decline, the noble family Rechberg-Staufeneck owns the castle. From 1599 onwards the lords of the castle change frequently through sale or marriage. A period of decline begins in 1800; by 1844 the castle is no longer inhabitable and l ...
Founded: 1080 | Location: Salach, Germany

Schloss Lieser

Schloss Lieser (Lieser castle) was created on the site of a 1710-built church property. Today's castle was designed by the architect Heinrich Theodor Schmidt in 1884–1887 as the residence for the family of the winery owner Eduard Puricelli. Eduard Puricelli founded and led several gas industries, including in Trier and also in the Rheinböller hut. In 1895/1904-1906 the castle was extended when Maria and Dr Clemens Frei ...
Founded: 1884 | Location: Lieser, Germany

Tangermünde Gate

The Tangermünd Gate is the counterpart to the Uengling Gate. The base of the gate is formed by a Romanesque pedestal built from fieldstones dating to the first quarter of the 13th century. The tower's crown is built from brick, and was added around 1440.
Founded: 1440 | Location: Stendal, Germany

Waldenburg Castle

Waldenburg castle lies at the summit of the spur that projects sharply from the crest of the mountain on the site of the original 13th century castle, commanding a superb panoramic view over a plain with a radius of almost 160 kilometers. It has been in the possession of the House of Hohenlohe without interruption since 1253. In the 16th and 17th centuries the castle was converted into a royal palace. The palace church, t ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Waldenburg, Germany

Meßkirch Castle

Build around 1557 by the Counts of Zimmern, Messkirch Castle is reputed to be the earliest quadrangular Renaissance structure north of the Alps. The castle"s main showpiece is the large ceremonial hall with its magnificent coffered ceiling, which today provides a festive setting not just for concerts and exhibitions, but also for weddings and conferences. In summer, the castle"s inner courtyard and adjoining gar ...
Founded: 1577 | Location: Meßkirch, Germany

Gruttenstein Castle

Gruttenstein castle was probably built in the 12th century for the local counts. It was however destroyed by the army of archbishop of Salzburg in 1196 and rebuilt few years later. From the 13th century Gruttenstein served as the official residence of ducal Bavarian official. Today the castle is in private ownership and completely renovated.
Founded: 12th century | Location: Bad Reichenhall, Germany

Uenglingen Gate

Uenglingen gate was built ca. 1450-1460 and is regarded to be amongst the finest late medieval city gates amongst those built in the northern German brick Gothic style, only surpassed by the Holsten Gate in Lübeck. The gate is believed to have been built by Stefan Boxthude, one of the most reknowned masterbuilders of the 15th century. The gate"s tower, boasting sheer rounded ramparts, was originally the main gat ...
Founded: 1450-1460 | Location: Stendal, Germany

Hohengeroldseck Castle Ruins

Hohengeroldseck castle dates from the 13th century when it was the seat of the Counts of Hohengeroldseck. It was besieged twice, 1426 and 1486. ​​The final destruction took place by the French troops in 1689 when the castle burnt down completely.
Founded: c. 1250 | Location: Schönberg, Germany

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Château des Ducs de Bretagne

The Château des ducs de Bretagne (Castle of the Dukes of Brittany) is a large castle located in Nantes. It served as the centre of the historical province of Brittany until its separation in 1941. It was the residence of the Dukes of Brittany between the 13th and 16th centuries, subsequently becoming the Breton residence of the French Monarchy. Today the castle houses the Nantes History Museum.

The restored edifice now includes the new Nantes History Museum, installed in 32 of the castle rooms. The museum presents more than 850 objects of collection with the aid of multimedia devices. The castle and the museum try to offer a modern vision of the heritage by presenting the past, the present and the future of the city. Night-time illuminations at the castle further reinforce the revival of the site. The 500-metre round walk on the fortified ramparts provides views not just of the castle buildings and courtyards but also of the town.