The ruins of Gösting castle offer the perfect destination for a trek within easy reach of Graz. The steep but short ascent passes by the ‘Jungfernsprung’, the place from which, legend has it, the lovesick and grief-stricken Anna von Gösting threw herself to her doom. Further up, by the castle ruins, there are impressive views of the strategically important valley of the river Mur, Graz itself and the landscape around Gösting.
The castle was built in the 11th century and the first record dates from 1042. It was frequently extended until the 15th century as a fortress to provide protection against the Turks and Hungarians. It was part of the signalling fire system, which was supposed to warn the population in case of danger.
In 1707, the castle and domain were acquired by the Counts of Attems. On July 10, 1723, lightning struck the gunpowder magazine, and a large part of the castle burnt down. It was not rebuilt and in 1728 it was replaced with the new Baroque residence of the Attems family.References:
The city walls of Avila were built in the 11th century to protect the citizens from the Moors. They have been well maintained throughout the centuries and are now a major tourist attraction as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can walk around about half of the length of the walls.
The layout of the city is an even quadrilateral with a perimeter of 2,516 m. Its walls, which consist in part of stones already used in earlier constructions, have an average thickness of 3 m. Access to the city is afforded by nine gates of different periods; twin 20 m high towers, linked by a semi-circular arch, flank the oldest ones, Puerta de San Vicente and Puerta del Alcázar.