Villaviciosa Castle

Villaviciosa, Spain

The Castle of Villaviciosa was built in two different stages. In the 15th century, Nuño González del Águila y Guzmán ordered to build a castle to control the passage from the Amblés Valley to the Sierra de la Paramera. In the 16th century, the execution of the Torre de las Damas was carried out. Currently, Villaviciosa Castle is a hotel.

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Details

Founded: 15th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in Spain

Rating

5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

santiago bettosini (5 months ago)
Manuel Esteban (5 months ago)
Sara Martín Bonilla (6 months ago)
Miguel Angel_61 (12 months ago)
Espectacular. Visita muy recomendable. Rodeado de zonas verdes y senderos naturales
Prado Matamoros (14 months ago)
Es la edificación más antigua de Villaviciosa, de principios del siglo XV, época de los Reyes Católicos. Y también la más querida. Actualmente pertenece al Archivo del Ejército del Aire, pero afortunadamente se está abriendo al público cada vez más para poder visitarlo. También se organizan en su Patio de Armas Conciertos de Música Clásica durante los veranos. Esperamos que se extienda también a más épocas del año.
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Hochosterwitz Castle is considered to be one of Austria's most impressive medieval castles. The rock castle is one of the state's landmarks and a major tourist attraction.

The site was first mentioned in an 860 deed issued by King Louis the German of East Francia, donating several of his properties in the former Principality of Carantania to the Archdiocese of Salzburg. In the 11th century Archbishop Gebhard of Salzburg ceded the castle to the Dukes of Carinthia from the noble House of Sponheim in return for their support during the Investiture Controversy. The Sponheim dukes bestowed the fiefdom upon the family of Osterwitz, who held the hereditary office of the cup-bearer in 1209.

In the 15th century, the last Carinthian cup-bearer, Georg of Osterwitz was captured in a Turkish invasion and died in 1476 in prison without leaving descendants. So after four centuries, on 30 May 1478, the possession of the castle reverted to Emperor Frederick III of Habsburg.

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About 1541, German king Ferdinand I of Habsburg bestowed Hochosterwitz upon the Carinthian governor Christof Khevenhüller. In 1571, Baron George Khevenhüller acquired the citadel by purchase. He fortified to deal with the threat of Turkish invasions of the region, building an armory and 14 gates between 1570 and 1586. Such massive fortification is considered unique in citadel construction.

Since the 16th century, no major changes have been made to Hochosterwitz. It has also remained in the possession of the Khevenhüller family as requested by the original builder, George Khevenhüller. A marble plaque dating from 1576 in the castle yard documents this request.

A specific feature is the access way to the castle passing through a total of 14 gates, which are particularly prominent owing to the castle's situation in the landscape. Tourists are allowed to walk the 620-metre long pathway through the gates up to the castle; each gate has a diagram of the defense mechanism used to seal that particular gate. The castle rooms hold a collection of prehistoric artifacts, paintings, weapons, and armor, including one set of armor 2.4 metres tall, once worn by Burghauptmann Schenk.