Czocha Castle

Czocha, Poland

Czocha Castle is located on the Lake Leśnia, what is now the Polish part of Upper Lusatia. Czocha castle was built on gneiss rock, and its oldest part is the keep, to which housing structures were later added.

Czocha Castle began as a stronghold, on the Czech-Lusatian border. Its construction was ordered by Wenceslaus I of Bohemia, in the middle of the 13th century (1241–1247). In 1253 castle was handed over to Konrad von Wallhausen, Bishop of Meissen. In 1319 the complex became part of the dukedom of Henry I of Jawor, and after his death, it was taken over by another Silesian prince, Bolko II the Small, and his wife Agnieszka. Origin of the stone castle dates back to 1329.

In the mid-14th century, Czocha Castle was annexed by Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia. Then, between 1389 and 1453, it belonged to the noble families of von Dohn and von Kluks. Reinforced, the complex was besieged by the Hussites in the early 15th century, who captured it in 1427, and remained in the castle for unknown time (see Hussite Wars). In 1453, the castle was purchased by the family of von Nostitz, who owned it for 250 years, making several changes through remodelling projects in 1525 and 1611. Czocha's walls were strengthened and reinforced, which thwarted a Swedish siege of the complex during the Thirty Years War. In 1703, the castle was purchased by Jan Hartwig von Uechtritz, influential courtier of Augustus II the Strong. On August 17, 1793, the whole complex burned in a fire.

In 1909, Czocha was bought by a cigar manufacturer from Dresden, Ernst Gutschow, who ordered major remodelling, carried out by Berlin architect Bodo Ebhardt, based on a 1703 painting of the castle. Gutschow, who was close to the Russian Imperial Court and hosted several White emigres in Czocha, lived in the castle until March 1945. Upon leaving, he packed up the most valuable possessions and moved them out.

After World War II, the castle was ransacked several times, both by soldiers of the Red Army, and Polish thieves, who came to the so-called Recovered Territories from central and eastern part of the country. Pieces of furniture and other goods were stolen, and in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the castle was home to refugees from Greece. In 1952, Czocha was taken over by the Polish Army. Used as a military vacation resort, it was erased from official maps. The castle has been open to the public since September 1996 as a hotel and conference centre. The complex was featured in several movies and television series. Recently, the castle has been used as the setting of the College of Wizardry, a live action role-playing game (LARP) that takes place in their own universe and can be compared to Harry Potter.

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Czocha, Poland
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Founded: 1241
Category: Castles and fortifications in Poland

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4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Valeria Oliveira (19 months ago)
Although the event I went to was absolutely amazing (College of Wizardry), the hotel portion was okay. Bathroom and room were clean and way more comfortable than I was expecting but the shower was very small and my main issue: the food. It wasn’t bad necessarily but sometimes it was cold. And I don’t mean just was there for too long and grew cold. I mean the soy nuggets were still frozen inside and hadn’t been cooked at all cold. Will definitely be going back though!
Adam Knorr (19 months ago)
This castle is amazing, especially if you walk around a try to find all the secret passages
Paweł Kuźniarski (19 months ago)
Beautiful castle with stunning views. Minus one star for the absurd way insides have been commercialized into a hotel and for lack of accessibility
Jolien Somers (21 months ago)
We were thinking that you could visit the whole castle. But it is actually mostly a hotel and there are parts that you can visit as a tourist. It looks very good and I think it is also fun to stay the night there. If you just want to go in, there are guided tours.
Liselle Angelique Evers Krog Awwal (2 years ago)
Czocha castle is as spectacular a place as they come, properly magical and an absolute must-see for castle aficionados or anyone interested in medieval times. With its whimsical layout, hidden passages everywhere, majestic bridge entrance, round tower and spectacular views over the river (get a room with windows in that direction, the sunrises are unforgettable), this place will send you home with memories for life.
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