Książ Castle, the third largest castle in Poland, is located on a majestic rock cliff by the side of the Pelcznica River. Beautifully surrounded by the forest within a 315500 actre nature reserve, at the height of 395m above sea level, castle is often called ‘the Pearl of Lower Silesia’. Such location corresponding to the size of the building is very rare in Europe.

Książ (in German Fürstenstein) was built in 1288-1292 under Bolko I the Strict (Duke of Świdnica and Jawor) after the original fortification was destroyed in the year 1263 by Ottokar II of Bohemia. Duke Bolko II of Świdnica died in 1368 without having children with his wife Agnes von Habsburg. After her death in the year 1392 King Wenceslaus IV of Bohemia obtained the castle. In 1401 Janko from Chociemice obtained the castle.

The Bohemian Hussites occupied the castle between 1428-1429. In the year 1464 Birka from Nasiedla obtained the castle from the Bohemian crown. He sold it to Hans von Schellendorf. This second castle was destroyed in 1482 by Georg von Stein. In the year 1509 Konrad I von Hoberg obtained the castle hill. The Hochberg family owned the castle until the 1940s.

Jan Henryk XV carried the the biggest development in the Castle’s history. Between 1908 – 1923 north and west renaissance extensions were being developed. Castle’s tower has reached the height of 47m and was covered with the domed helmet and the lantern. Also the Castle’s gardens took its current shape.

The castle was seized by the Nazi government in 1944 because the Prince of Pless Hans Heinrich XVII had moved to England in 1932 and became a British citizen, also his brother Count Alexander of Hochberg who was a Polish citizen and the owner of Schloss Pleß (today Pszczyna Castle), had joined the Polish army. Fürstenstein castle was a part of the Project Riese (a construction project of Nazi Germany, consisting of seven underground structures located in the Owl Mountains) until 1945 when it was occupied by the Red army. All artifacts were stolen or destroyed.

Up to 1956 the castle was decaying the the restoration took place between 1956-1974.

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Founded: 1288-1292
Category: Castles and fortifications in Poland

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Raúl Montero Veiga (15 months ago)
Good place to see. The BEST the gardens and outside the Castle. Prepare your foots and take good shoes to walk a lot
Wadim “karmainside” Mieszajkin (18 months ago)
One of the most beautiful castles in Europe. It's in perfect condition, situated on the top of the mountain. There is a big park around the castle, some attractions inside and nearby, the restaurant, and the hotel. Multiple hiking trails around the castle. A must see place. Also, take a short walk to the view point nearby, view of the castle from a distance is breathtaking. There is a paid parking (15 PLN) in the castle, though space is very limited.
Michał Struzik (2 years ago)
Very nice and well preserved castle. A lot of green areas and beautiful Valley. During Covid you can't get inside but still worth it to travel and enjoy surrounding.
David van Oostende (2 years ago)
A beautiful and right of history kind of castle. There is also a beautiful garden and other things to visit! I also personally recommend to take the audio tour of the castle and tunnels, it's amazing!
Pablo Esc (2 years ago)
Not the first visit and most certainly not the last one, this place certainly does not disappoint. If possible try visiting midweek when it's much quieter than over the weekend
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