Castles and fortifications in Germany

Jettenbach Castle

Jettenbach Castle was first mentioned in the mid-12th century when it was probably a wooden fort. The castle chapel originates from 1356. The castle was replaced by a stone castle in 1511 and expanded in 1622. The other wing was added in the late 17th century. The new brewery was constructed in 1726. Jettenbach was badly damaged by fire in 1855. It was rebuilt in next two years to the current appearance.
Founded: 1511 | Location: Jettenbach, Germany

Wild Castle

Castle Wild (Wildburg) lies southern behind the Castle Treis. It was built in the 13th or 14th century, probably as protection of the southern side of the castle Treis. In the fifties it was restored and made fit to live in. Back then, the northern situated, almost square, donjon was repaired and received a new roof. The great hall and other outbuildings were also rebuilt. Other buildings and the circular wall are just ru ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Treis, Germany

Amlishagen Castle

Amlishagen Castle was built in the 13th Century and first mentioned in 1253. In the second half of the 14th Century, 1601 and in the 19th Century the castle was expanded and renovated. The castle was owned by the Lords of Amlingshagen and later by the Lords of Wollmershausen. The castle is currently privately owned and occupied. After the family von Wollmershausen died out in the 18th Century, the castle was owned by a n ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Amlishagen, Germany

Brenz Castle

During the High Middle Ages ownership of Brenz an der Brenz rested with a minor noble family who took their name from the location. Members of this family are mentioned several times in the records from this time. In the Galluskirche there is a gravestone from 1190 for Sebolt von Brenz who is listed as a Crusader. After 1250 a side line of the noble family von Güssenberg occupied Schloss Brenz. To pay debts, the family q ...
Founded: 1672 | Location: Sontheim, Germany

Warthausen Castle

Warthausen castle is a large country palace which has been home to several famous historical personages, including authors Christoph Martin Wieland and Sophie von La Roche, and painter Johann Heinrich Tischbein. It was the traditional home of the Counts of Stadion-Warthausen. In 1168, a castle was sold to Friedrich Barbarossa, and passed to the House of Habsburg in 1339. The castle burned down in 1474, and was rebuilt. I ...
Founded: 1532-1540 | Location: Warthausen, Germany

Burgrain Castle

The first fort in Isein was built by bishop Atto of Freising in 784-811 AD. The current Burgrain castle dates from 1200s, when the lords of Burgrain built a four-winged building with keep and moat. The extensive additions and renovation was made in the 15th century by bishop Nicodemus. After the secularization in 1804 Burgrain castle has been in possession of several owners. In 1906 it was converted into a home for blind ...
Founded: c. 1200 | Location: Burgrain, Germany

Heimhof Castle

Heimhof Castle was built in the 14th century by the lords of Haimenhofen and is a well-preserved example of a medieval castle residence. It consists of a three storey building with corner towers.
Founded: 14th century | Location: Ursensollen, Germany

Milkel Castle

Milkel castle, surrounded by water on four sides, was founded probably in 1302. In 1719-20 the north tower was built by the Ponickau family and the castle got its current apperance. Today, after 20 years of restoration work, the castle, the cavalier houses, the park and burial places of the previous owners are in a good condition.
Founded: 1302 | Location: Milkel, Germany

Neuburg Castle

Neuburg Castle was constructed around 1290 to the site of earlier castle owned by the Mosbach Abbey. The main building was reconstructed in 1500-1619 by the lords of Rossau. In 1945 the state of Baden-Württemberg took over the castle. For several years, it served as a refugee camp. Since 2001 Neuburg has been a hotel.
Founded: 1290 | Location: Obrigheim, Germany

Ehrenberg Castle

Ehrenberg Castle dates from the early 12th century when it was built by the Counts of Lauffen. The oldest part of the wall around the main castle. The building of the main castle date from the 12th and 13th centuries. To existing keep dates from 1235. The castle was ruined in the Thirty Years" War. The new residential and farm buildings have been built in the 17th and 18th century. Today Ehrenberg is privately owned ...
Founded: 12th century | Location: Bad Rappenau, Germany

Ramsberg Castle

The Ramsberg Castle was built around 1200-1225 probably by the knight Ulrich von Plochingen and Konrad, the monk from Rechenberg. In 1327-1529 the castle was owned by the lords of Rechenberg. The Gothic chapel was built in 1560. It was initially dedicated to St. Margaret and later to St. Martin. Between 1560 and 1580 the castle was rebuilt a second time.
Founded: 1200-1225 | Location: Donzdorf, Germany

Kirchhausen Castle

The moated Kirchhausen castle was built between 1570 and 1576 by order of Heinrich von Bogenhausen (Teutonic Order). He replaced the old castle that was built by Thomas Knoll from Weinsberg, whose stone cutter’s mark is still visible today in the keystone of the archway. Today, the moat around the castle is no longer filled with water. A stone bridge leads the way into the castle courtyard, which took over the form ...
Founded: 1570 | Location: Kirchhausen, Germany

Güssenburg Castle

Güssenburg Castle was built around 1346 to the site of earlier castle. It was the ancestral seat of the House of Güssenberg. The family was quite large and eventually ruled over many castles and communities in the region. The count"s vogt or bailiff was located at the Güssenburg until 1448. The central location of the castle made it an ideal location to administer the grafschaft or fief of the Count. ...
Founded: 1346 | Location: Hermaringen, Germany

Taxis Castle

Originally built in the 13th century for the von Trugenhofen family, the Taxis castle was later owned by the Öttingern, the Helfenstein and the Katzenstein families. In 1734 it was inherited by the princely house of Thurn and Taxis. The family expanded the Burg (a medieval fortification) into a Schloss (a ornate and comfortable building). In addition to expanding the original buildings, English gardens and terraces w ...
Founded: 18th century | Location: Dischingen, Germany

Neidenstein Castle

The oldest parts of Neidenstein castle date back to the 13th century. It was first mentioned in 1319 as a fiefdom of Friedrich von Venningen. 1385 the castle was still an imperial fief of the lords of Venningen whose line Venningen-Neidenstein resided at the castle. Siegfried von Venningen († 1393) and Jobst of Venningen († 1410) were Grand Masters of the Teutonic Order, Hans von Venningen († 1478) was Bishop of Bas ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Neidenstein, Germany

Dellmensingen Castle

Dellmensingen Castle is an early Baroque castle covered by a gabled roof. For a long period of time there were two castles in Dellmensingen: the Untere Burg (Lower Castle), surrounded by a moat, mentioned in the 15th century, of which no remains are visible today as it was completely demolished in 1809, and the Obere Burg (Upper Castle). Both castles were destroyed during the Thirty Years War. When the owner of the villa ...
Founded: 1685 | Location: Dellmensingen, Germany

Untersulmetingen Castle

Untersulmetingen Castle is a small castle-like renaissance structure located on a slow slope of a terminal moraine to the west of the river Riß. It is a plain, three-storey building, covered by a large gabled roof which dates from around 1600. The castles" chapel, which dates from 1608 and was dedicated to Saint Othmar, is decorated by paintings and stucco whose function it is to amalgamate the encompassed form ...
Founded: 1538-1542 | Location: Untersulmetingen, Germany

Breitenstein Castle Ruins

The ruins of Breitenstein Castle stand on a 220-metre-high crag on the northern side of the Speyerbach valley. It was probably built in 1246 by Pope Innocent IV during the unrest over the excommunication of Frederick II. Not until 1257 was it mentioned in the records in connexion with a knight of Kropsberg, castellan of the Breitenstein and Dienstmann of the counts of Leiningen. The knight was named in 1265 as Burkhard of ...
Founded: 1246 | Location: Elmstein, Germany

Staufeneck Castle

Staufeneck Castle was built in the 12th century by Burggrafen von Staufeneck. In the year 1307 the castle went into the ownership of the Erzstift Salzburg, under whom it served as one of the maintenance courts in Rupertiwinkel from 1365 to 1805. In 1503, the castle was under Archbishop Leonhard von Keutschach who fundamentally transformed it, giving it its present appearance. Since 1894, the castle has been under private ...
Founded: 12th century | Location: Piding, Germany

Sandersdorf Castle

Sandersdorf Castle is a 17th-century building on a medieval foundation. It stands on a spur of high land to the west of the village of Sandersdorf. The building has four wings. The east and south wings are decorated with bay windows and gables. The lower west wing contains the inner courtyard with open arcades. There are onion domes over the gatehouse and the castle chapel. The most valuable works of art are a crucifix by ...
Founded: c. 1646 | Location: Sandersdorf, Germany

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Schloßberg

The Schloßberg is the site of ancient fortress in the centre of the city of Graz, Austria. The hill is now a public park and enjoys extensive views of the city. The fortification of the Schloßberg goes back to at least the 10th century. In the mid-16th century, a 400 m long fortress was constructed by architects from the north of Italy. There are records of a cable-hauled lift being in use between 1528 and 1595 to move construction materials for the fortifications. The castle was never conquered, but it was largely demolished by Napoleonic forces under the Treaty of Schönbrunn of 1809. The clock tower (the Uhrturm) and bell tower (the Glockenturm) were spared after the people of Graz paid a ransom for their preservation.

The remains of the castle were turned into a public park by Ludwig von Welden in 1839. The park contains the Uhrturm, the Glockenturm, a cistern and two bastions from the old castle. The Uhrturm is a recognisable icon for the city, and is unusual in that the clock"s hands have opposite roles to the common notion, with the larger one marking hours while the smaller is for minutes. The Glockenturm contains Liesl, the heaviest bell in Graz.

Near the Uhrturm there is a café with views over the old town. Additionally, on the western side of the Schloßberg, there are two small cafés, one with table service and the other one with self-service. Next to the terminus of the funicular railway there is a hilltop restaurant with views of western Graz. In what was once the cellar of one of the ruined bastions is the Kasemattenbühne, an open-air stage for concerts and performances.

Below the Schloßberg hill is an extensive system of tunnels, which were created during the second world war to protect the civilian population of Graz from aerial bombing. Some of these tunnels are still accessible, including a passage from Schloßbergplatz to Karmeliterplatz, and a grotto railway for children. Also in the tunnel complex is the Dom im Berg, which was expanded in 2000 to provide a venue space for up to 600 people.