Hohenberg Castle, situated adjacent to Czech Republic border, was built in the Hohenstaufen period between 1170 and 1220 to protect the important Schirndinger Pass. Around 1300 Hohenberg came to the possession of burgraves from Nuremberg. in 1433, Hans von Kotzau defended Hohenberg against the Hussites.
The present castle was built mainly (ring wall, round towers) in the period around 1480. In the years 1499 and 1504 was reported by the construction of the outer bailey. In the years 1621 and 1622 Margrave Christian had massive, provided with seven bastions earthen walls around the castle, which were additionally fortified with palisades . However, these precautions did not help much, as in June 1632 imperial troops took the pass from Schirnding, conquered the Hohenberg and occupied it for three years. After the Thirty Years War, Hohenberg Castle lost its strategic importance.
Since 2017, Hohenberg castle has been extensively renovated and used as a youth hostel as well as for meetings.
The castle is surrounded by the ring wall built around 1480 on an irregular hexagonal floor plan, which is additionally attached to the corner points by the gatehouse, three round gun turrets and the square prison tower. A fourth round tower was abandoned in the 19th century. From the medieval interior is nothing left. The so-called princely house was built by Margrave Christian Ernst in 1666 as a town hall and hunting lodge. Other buildings inside the castle were demolished in the 19th century. A remnant of the earthwork from the years 1621/22 has survived.
The Broch of Gurness is an Iron Age broch village. Settlement here began sometime between 500 and 200 BC. At the centre of the settlement is a stone tower or broch, which once probably reached a height of around 10 metres. Its interior is divided into sections by upright slabs. The tower features two skins of drystone walls, with stone-floored galleries in between. These are accessed by steps. Stone ledges suggest that there was once an upper storey with a timber floor. The roof would have been thatched, surrounded by a wall walk linked by stairs to the ground floor. The broch features two hearths and a subterranean stone cistern with steps leading down into it. It is thought to have some religious significance, relating to an Iron Age cult of the underground.
The remains of the central tower are up to 3.6 metres high, and the stone walls are up to 4.1 metres thick. The tower was likely inhabited by the principal family or clan of the area but also served as a last resort for the village in case of an attack.
The broch continued to be inhabited while it began to collapse and the original structures were altered. The cistern was filled in and the interior was repartitioned. The ruin visible today reflects this secondary phase of the broch's use.
The site is surrounded by three ditches cut out of the rock with stone ramparts, encircling an area of around 45 metres diameter. The remains of numerous small stone dwellings with small yards and sheds can be found between the inner ditch and the tower. These were built after the tower, but were a part of the settlement's initial conception. A 'main street' connects the outer entrance to the broch. The settlement is the best-preserved of all broch villages.
Pieces of a Roman amphora dating to before 60 AD were found here, lending weight to the record that a 'King of Orkney' submitted to Emperor Claudius at Colchester in 43 AD.
At some point after 100 AD the broch was abandoned and the ditches filled in. It is thought that settlement at the broch continued into the 5th century AD, the period known as Pictish times. By that time the broch was not used anymore and some of its stones were reused to build smaller dwellings on top of the earlier buildings. Until about the 8th century, the site was just a single farmstead.
In the 9th century, a Norse woman was buried at the site in a stone-lined grave with two bronze brooches and a sickle and knife made from iron. Other finds suggest that Norse men were buried here too.