10 Must-Visit Medieval Castles In Germany

10 Must-Visit Medieval Castles In Germany

There are more than 20,000 castles in Germany and each of them is unique in its own way with different architectural designs. From the famous fairytale castle to some ruins of castles dating back to medieval times, there is an endless list of castles and fortresses to explore in Germany.

While some of the castles are known for their fine architecture, there are some which are popular for several mythical tales and dark pasts. The origins of German castles date back to the 9th to 10th century, the time when the age of castles just started. Most of the fortresses are either built for defending the nation or others served as the residents of Royal families. 

Before planning to explore any of these fortresses, let’s take a look at these top 10 castles in Germany which are must-visit. 

Top 10 Castles In Germany 

1. Hohenzollern Castle 

Sitting at the top of Mount Swabia just 50 km south of the city of Stuttgart is the famous historical heritage of Germany “Hohenzollern Castle”. It was built in 1061 while other sources say it dates back to 1267. The location of this castle itself makes it fascinating to watch from distance. 

The original castle was demolished in 1423 and later rebuilt in 1454 with a much stronger structure. It become ruined in the 19th century due to not being preserved well and luckily it was renovated by Russian crown Prince “Frederick William” in the year 1819. Hohenzollern is privately owned and is a major highlight in Germany for tourists. 

Location: Burg Hohenzollern

Also Read: 5 Must-Visit Tourist Attractions In Germany

2. Schwerin Castle 

While most of the castles in Germany are surrounded by mountains and sit at the rocky crags, the Schwerin castle is completely encompassed by waters. It is connected with Mecklenburg-Vorpommern through the bridge. Built in 973, Schwerin is one of the oldest German castles and also one of the well-preserved. 

The fortress has more than 650 rooms and each room is classically decorated and contains exceptional ground patterns. The current structure that you are seeing was reconstructed in 1857 by Duke Fredrick. The new structure is inspired by French Renaissance architecture. Now, only the museum of this castle is open for visitors. 

Location: Lennestrabe, Schwerin 

3. Wernigerode Castle

The Wernigerode castle is a medieval fortress that was built as a place where emperors stop while going for a hunt. It went through several expansions over the middle ages and was later converted into a Renaissance Castle in the 16th century. 

The castle that you see today was rebuilt in the 19th century in Romantic style, also called North German historic. While touring this castle, you will notice some signs of older styles such as Gothic windows and a Renaissance staircase. The castle is accessible by tourist train, or on a horseback. 

Location: Am Schlo, Wernigerode 

Also Read: Travel Guide To Germany | Things To Know And Tips To Follow While On A Trip 

4. Eltz Castle 

One of the well-preserved castles in Germany, the Eltz castle is around 850 years old and still stands in its original form. It served as the main residence of three different families named Kempenich, Rodendorf, and Rubenach families. Standing at the top of a high rock, the castle is still owned by the 33rd generation of Eltz families. 

Only two parts of the castle are opened to the public while the remaining part still served as a home to the Kompenich family. The visitor coming here have so much to explore including Castle's treasures and armory, The Rodendorf kitchen, the knight's hall, the Armor suite, and Jester”s masks. 

Location: Wierschem

5. Cochem Castle 

Yet another architectural marvel in Germany is the Cochem Castle sitting at a hundred-meter high hill. Cochem was originally constructed in 1100 and was passed on to Count Henry I by the Queen of Poland. The Castel was invaded by King Konrad III and he took over its ownership 

It is now one of the top attractions of the city and is visited by a huge number of tourists every year. The current architecture of Cochem represents neo-gothic structure along having enriched with renaissance furniture. The castle also served as a summer palace for royal families in the late 19th century. 

Location: Schlossstra, Cochem

6. Neuschwanstein Castle 

Also known as a fairytale castle, the Neuschwanstein Castle holds so much resemblance to the castle shown in the opening of Disney movies and also in the cinderella series. Being one of the most beautiful castles not only in Europe but also throughout the globe. The construction of this castle was started in 1869 by Eduard Riedel and was completed in 1886. 

Due to its popularity, it is best advised to book your ticket in advance. You can book a tour of 10.5 hours combined with Neuschwanstein castle and King Ludwig’s. 

Location: Neuschwanstein, Schwangau 

Also Read: 10 Best Things To Do In Cologne City | The Cathedral City of Germany

7. Heidelberg Castle 

The breathtaking Heidelberg Castle sits at the height of 92 meters above Heidelberg city of Germany. The structure of this fortress is quite different from other German castles and signifies the architectural era of Germany. The castle went through several destructions and was finally rebuilt in 1800 by Count Charles de Graimberg. 

It also houses a garden and offers amazing views of the entire city of Heidelberg, the river of Nectar, and sometimes Mannheim city. A tour of this majestic fortress is something you will never regret as it has plenty of things to discover. 

Location: Schlosshof, Heidelberg 

8. Marienburg Castle 

Marienburg Castle was built by the ruler of Hanover “King George V” as a gift to his wife on her 39th birthday. The wonderful Gothic structure has 160 rooms offering 30 meters of floor view. As the fortress was built as a symbol of love, it is one of the most romantic places in Germany to visit. 

Today, the castle is widely popular for offering spectacular panoramic views including the area it is surrounded by. Not only this, but you can also attend various events and festivals that are held in this castle every year. 

Location: Mareinber, Pattensen 

9. Braunfels Castle 

Situated in the Lahn Valley, the history of Braunfels Castle is combined with middle age until the early 19th century. The gothic structure that you would see here was part of the renovation that took place in 1845 by order of Haunter Prince Ferdinand. It also houses baroque elements that were brought between the 17th to 18th centuries. 

Since its renovation in the 19th century, the castle hasn't changed a bit and the tourists coming here will get to witness the combination of middle age gothic and baroque design. 

Location: Schloss, Braunfels

Also Read: 10 Best Cities In Germany That You Should Not Miss

10. Marksburg Castle

The Marburg is a major landmark in Rhine Valley and is listed among the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. It is one of the 40 hill fortresses near the river which has never witnessed any destruction nor it has been attacked even once.  The people who constructed this castle were Romans and they were among the most popular families of their time. 

The present structure is a part of the reconstruction that took place in 1479. As a visitor, you will start your tour from the drawbridge gate, then the medieval gate, the third route is the rider's stairway that can be completed on a horseback. 

Location: Rhine Valley, Braubach Town 

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