Hallwyl Castle is one of the most important moated castles in Switzerland. It is located on two islands in the River Aabach, just north of the northern end of Lake Hallwil. Since 1925, it has been open to the public, and since 1994 it has been owned by the canton of Aargau and is part of the museum of Aargau.

The first mention of the castle is in the year 1256. However, the originally free noble family of Hallwyl were first mentioned in a testament from 1167. Some discoveries indicate that the castle was founded in the late 12th century. Hallwyl Castle was the home castle of the Lords of Hallwyl, who owned the surrounding land and parts of the lake as their personal property. It consisted of a residential tower with a dry moat. In 1265 the keepwas expanded.

In the early 14th century the dry ditch was converted into a moat. The old castle tower was surrounded by a moat and a wall on what became the Rear Island. To the east of the Rear Island, an artificial island was built in the River Aabach. This island, the Front Island, was outfitted with a curtain wall, and was occupied by residential and commercial buildings. During the conquest of Aargau in 1415 by the Swiss Confederation, the castle (which was known after 1369 as the Ganerbenburg) was burnt by the Bernese troops. The castle was immediately rebuilt and expanded.

After the construction of two turrets in 1500 and 1579-1590 there was an extensive general renovation. After long neglect, the castle was partly rebuilt in neo-Gothic style in 1861 and 1870-74. However, this project was mostly reversed in 1914.

In 1925 the family foundation made an effort to preserve the castle. Since 1994, it has been in possession of the Canton of Aargau.

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Address

Burgweg, Seengen, Switzerland
See all sites in Seengen

Details

Founded: 12th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in Switzerland

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Adventure Lover (11 months ago)
It is a very beautiful castle located just next to the stunning lake. The Castle is child firndly and it has often some kids activity organized. They also offer some little experiements for kids to try on their own. Worth visiting with the Family
Jaime Báez (11 months ago)
Pristinely preserved Castle from the 15th century (even though it was destroyed and rebuild in the 19th), in the middle of a Lake, therefore having a really nice place for a picnic or just hanging out. Nevertheless, the items inside are a bit laking and the prices really excessive.
Frantisek Trgo (11 months ago)
Water castle
Demeter Jurista (12 months ago)
Nice wather castle, ideal for visit with kids and for a walk from the castle to the lake
Luis Amador Jimenez (14 months ago)
Nice small castle on hilltop, follow arrows from town (or search for Swiss flag which marks the walk path start, nice view of nearby town and great fresh air!.
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