Maltesholm Castle The castle has been passed down for generations and is now the private residence of the Baron Palmstierna. The castle was originally constructed between 1635 and 1638 by the high constable of Kristianstad, Malte Juel, during the Danish rule of Scania, but the history of the estate goes back to the Middle ages and it was owned by the Brahe family. Typical for its time, the castle was a Renaissance manor built in brick with three floors, a staircase tower with an elaborate spire, two crow-stepped gables and surrounded by a large moat.
During the life of Lord Malte Ramel (d. 1752), one of the richest men in Sweden of the time, the domains were greatly expanded. His son Hans Ramel began reconstructing the castle according to the style of the late 18th century. It was completed in 1780 in the style of Swedish classical palace; the only remains of the Renaissance castle are the moat and the year 1680 marked on the facade. Hans Ramel also constructed a 1.3 kilometres long stone road leading up to the Mansion through the undulating landscape. The road had to be even and it took almost 50 years to complete. The workers had to bring a rock every day to the Manor for the construction and there was a grateful saying amongst the workers: If it wasn't for the Folly of a Rich man there wouldn't be bread for the Poor.
In the garden you can find an enormous douglas fir which measures 35 meters tall and is more than 100 years old. There is also a pavilion by the great classical Swedish architect Carl Hårleman. The beautiful garden is open to the public.References:
Sirmione castle was built near the end of the 12th century as part of a defensive network surrounding Verona. The castle was maintained and extended first as part of the Veronese protection against their rivals in Milan and later under the control of the Venetian inland empire. The massive fortress is totally surrounded by water and has an inner porch which houses a Roman and Medieval lapidary. From the drawbridge, a staircase leads to the walkways above the walls, providing a marvellous view of the harbour that once sheltered the Scaliger fleet. The doors were fitted with a variety of locking systems, including a drawbridge for horses, carriages and pedestrians, a metal grate and, more recently, double hinged doors. Venice conquered Sirmione in 1405, immediately adopting provisions to render the fortress even more secure, fortifying its outer walls and widening the harbour.
Thanks to its strategical geographical location as a border outpost, Sirmione became a crucial defence and control garrison for the ruling nobles, retaining this function until the 16th century, when its role was taken up by Peschiera del Garda.