Lichtenwalde Palace and Park is a magical place in Central Saxony that charms visitors with a wide range of water features: 335 historical fountains are spread across the baroque garden, all interconnected in an ingenious circuit. In spring, guests can experience a symphony of rustling leaves, bubbling fountains and fragrant flowers. The subtle design of Lichtenwalde Castle and Park makes it one of the prettiest baroque ensembles in Germany.
The palace houses the Treasure Chamber Museum with exhibits from foreign cultures and even ancient civilizations, such as porcelain and silk embroidery from China and Japan, ritualistic objects from Nepal and spirit masks from West Africa. Another unforgettable attraction is the largest collection of silhouettes in Germany.
Around 1230 a castle was built on the left bank of the Zschopau , 60 m above the valley. After the castle was administered by the empire for a short time at the end of the 13th century, it fell back to the margraves in 1307, who pledged the property with all its accessories in 1336 to the burgraves of Meissen and later loaned it to them.
Christoph Heinrich Graf von Watzdorf had the remains of the old castle and the Harrasschen Castle demolished and a large baroque castle built in its place after 1722. His son Friedrich Carl Graf von Watzdorf had an extensive park laid out around the complex from 1730.
When Watzdorf died without descendants, Lichtenwalde came into the possession of his widow, Henriette Sophia, née Countess Vitzthum von Eckstädt, in 1764. With that, the property came back to Vitzthume after more than 300 years. The Counts Vitzthum von Eckstädt remained lords of the castle in Lichtenwalde until they were expropriated in 1945.References:
The Castle of Gruyères is one of the most famous in Switzerland. It was built between 1270 and 1282, following the typical square plan of the fortifications in Savoy. It was the property of the Counts of Gruyères until the bankruptcy of the Count Michel in 1554. His creditors the cantons of Fribourg and Bern shared his earldom. From 1555 to 1798 the castle became residence to the bailiffs and then to the prefects sent by Fribourg.
In 1849 the castle was sold to the Bovy and Balland families, who used the castle as their summer residency and restored it. The castle was then bought back by the canton of Fribourg in 1938, made into a museum and opened to the public. Since 1993, a foundation ensures the conservation as well as the highlighting of the building and the art collection.
The castle is the home of three capes of the Order of the Golden Fleece. They were part of the war booty captured by the Swiss Confederates (which included troops from Gruyères) at the Battle of Morat against Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy in 1476. As Charles the Bold was celebrating the anniversary of his father's death, one of the capes is a black velvet sacerdotal vestment with Philip the Good's emblem sewn into it.
A collection of landscapes by 19th century artists Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Barthélemy Menn and others are on display in the castle.