Ahaus Castle is the former hunting residence of the Prince-Bishops of Münster in Ahaus. As early as the beginning of the 11th century, a castle stood on the site of today's baroque building, which belonged to the noble lords of Ahaus and passed into the possession of the prince bishop of Münster in 1406.

Between 1688 and 1695, the Capuchin monk Ambrosius von Oelde built the hunting lodge by order of the prince-bishop Friedrich Christian von Plettenberg. From 1765 to 1767, the Baroque master builder Johann Conrad Schlaun added a central risalit with a large flight of steps to the garden front after the destruction in the Seven Years' War.

In the 19th century, the castle housed a tobacco factory, among other things. In 1945 it was hit by a bombing raid and burnt out completely. The baroque furnishings of the rooms, which had been preserved until then, were lost. The district of Ahaus bought the ruins and had them rebuilt. Today the castle is owned by the district of Borken and houses the Ahaus Technical Academy. The district court of Ahaus is located directly next door. As the most important monument in the town of Ahaus, the castle is also the centre of cultural life.



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Founded: 1688-1695
Category: Castles and fortifications in Germany
Historical period: Thirty Years War & Rise of Prussia (Germany)

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4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Can okan Candan (4 months ago)
It is a quite and historical place. That was nice to spent some time with my family.
Ananda Majumdar (5 months ago)
Nice place to walk around
HowTo (14 months ago)
I uploaded photos from Feb 2021 , We want more snow!
Jennifer Groth (2 years ago)
So refreshing and theres a park nearby if you have kids.
Sinisa Mrsic (2 years ago)
Very nice castle with water around and black swan ?, ducks....nice sculptures...
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Château de Foix

The Château de Foix dominates the town of Foix. An important tourist site, it is known as a centre of the Cathars. Built on an older 7th-century fortification, the castle is known from 987. In 1002, it was mentioned in the will of Roger I, Count of Carcassonne, who bequeathed the fortress to his youngest child, Bernard. In effect, the family ruling over the region were installed here which allowed them to control access to the upper Ariège valley and to keep surveillance from this strategic point over the lower land, protected behind impregnable walls.

In 1034, the castle became capital of the County of Foix and played a decisive role in medieval military history. During the two following centuries, the castle was home to Counts with shining personalities who became the soul of the Occitan resistance during the crusade against the Albigensians. The county became a privileged refuge for persecuted Cathars.

The castle, often besieged (notably by Simon de Montfort in 1211 and 1212), resisted assault and was only taken once, in 1486, thanks to treachery during the war between two branches of the Foix family.

From the 14th century, the Counts of Foix spent less and less time in the uncomfortable castle, preferring the Governors' Palace. From 1479, the Counts of Foix became Kings of Navarre and the last of them, made Henri IV of France, annexed his Pyrrenean lands to France.

As seat of the Governor of the Foix region from the 15th century, the castle continued to ensure the defence of the area, notably during the Wars of Religion. Alone of all the castles in the region, it was exempted from the destruction orders of Richelieu (1632-1638).

Until the Revolution, the fortress remained a garrison. Its life was brightened with grand receptions for its governors, including the Count of Tréville, captain of musketeers under Louis XIII and Marshal Philippe Henri de Ségur, one of Louis XVI's ministers. The Round Tower, built in the 15th century, is the most recent, the two square towers having been built before the 11th century. They served as a political and civil prison for four centuries until 1862.

Since 1930, the castle has housed the collections of the Ariège départemental museum. Sections on prehistory, Gallo-Roman and mediaeval archaeology tell the history of Ariège from ancient times. Currently, the museum is rearranging exhibits to concentrate on the history of the castle site so as to recreate the life of Foix at the time of the Counts.