Griffen Castle Ruins

Griffen, Austria

Griffen castle was built between 1124 and 1146 by order of Bishop Otto of Bamberg. In an 1160 deed, Emperor Friedrich I mentioned Grivena as a Bamberg property.

In 1292 the Carinthian nobleman Count Ulrich von Heunburg with support of Archbishop Konrad IV of Salzburg occupied the fort in an uprising against Albert of Habsburg, the son of King Rudolph I of Germany and Duke Meinhard II. However Ulrich was abandoned by his allies and one year later had to leave the castle. In 1759 Bishop Adam Friedrich sold the Bamberg estates in Carinthia to Maria Theresa of Austria and the castle was incorporated into the Carinthian duchy.

About 1520 a large reconstruction of the castle took place as a protection against the threat posed by the Ottoman forces with a base amounted of about 4000 m², though the Turks never laid siege to Griffen. In 1659 a flash impact destroyed one of the towers and the decay of the castle began. In 1768 a last religious service took place and about 1840 the roofs were torn. In 2000 the preservation of the castle began. A steep footpath leads up the mountain to the ruins.

Within the mountain is the Griffener Tropfsteinhöhle (dripstone cave) with a length of 485m, which was not discovered until the late days of World War II. It is open to public and a natural landmark since 1957.



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Founded: 1124-1146
Category: Miscellaneous historic sites in Austria

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4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Carl Perazzola (4 years ago)
We were Driving from Vienna to Lake Bled and saw this place on the drive. We glad we stopped for 2 hours to explore. Took some great Photos and were glad we stopped here.
Nikola Teperova (4 years ago)
Beautiful place.
Belinda Viesca (4 years ago)
It was a very nice hike! Unfortunately, it was too late to go in the ruins of the castle so we will just have to comeback! But, we did have a coffee and a white chocolate coconut cake at Cafe on the top of the hill. The view was beautiful and what we ate was DELICIOUS!!!
Borek Najman (4 years ago)
Very nice place with great view around the valley. Plus beatifull cafe/bar on the top. Best to go there in the evening or morning to enjoy the view.
Elandrien Rei (5 years ago)
Great hike,beautiful view.Nice place to have some drinks,ice-cream or so.Cafe is only open during summer.
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