Both castles were rebuilt in the 19th century with the aim of « recreating the atmosphere of the Middle Ages ». The best time to visit is when the autumn leaves are at their most beautiful.
Date and time of visit: 27 October 2015, weather: sunny
Visit a romantic castle in the Swabian region of South West Germany
世界遺産「僧院の島ライヒェナウ」を出発して、次に向かったのは、シュヴァーベン地方のバーデン＝ヴュルテンベルク州にある2つのお城「Hohenzollern Castle」と「Liechtenstein Castle」です。ライヒェナウからは2時間ほどドライブとなります。
The location is around here. It is located just south of Stuttgart. The lower left is « Burg Hohenzollern » and the upper right is « Schloss Lichtenstein ».
The two castles are about less than an hour apart. The straight line distance is not so long, but it seems to take a little time because it is a common road.
Both castles were built around the 11th century, but due to the conflicts between the princes of the Holy Roman Empire and the 30 Years War, which affected the whole of Europe, they were abandoned or lost their function after the 17th century. It was reborn in the 19th century by the lords of the time as a romantic castle that recreates the atmosphere of the Middle Ages. Today, it is one of the most famous tourist attractions in the region.
The weather was cloudy and rainy in Reichenau and on the Autobahn, but it got better as we approached the castle area. It became clear and cloudless.
I am looking forward to sightseeing.
First we visited Hohenzollern Castle. The castle towers over a small mountain, so we could see its beautiful appearance from about 10km away.
The history of the Hohenzollern Castle can apparently be traced back to the 11th century, although according to the records, the first direct description of the castle’s appearance was written in 1267. It was said that the castle was vast for its time and had an interior of great artistic value, but unfortunately, in 1423, this castle was completely destroyed.
However, it was rebuilt in 1454 as a second Hohenzollern castle, larger and more strongly defended than before. However, the castle was then involved in the Thirty Years’ War, which engulfed the whole of Europe.
At that time, Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia, who visited the area in 1819, was so moved by the beautiful view from the ruined castle that he decided to rebuild Hohenzollern Castle in order to restore its former beauty. He later became King Friedrich Wilhelm IV of Prussia in 1844, and began work on the castle’s restoration in earnest around 1850 to fulfill his long-held dream. In 1850, he began to restore the castle in earnest, and it was reborn as the new Hohenzollern Castle that we see today, renowned as one of the most impressive castles in Germany in the neo-Gothic style.
The scene was so beautiful that I wanted to take a lot of pictures while I parked my car, but I had limited time, so I decided to visit the castle first. There is a parking lot in front of the castle (top right of the map below), but you need to take a private shuttle bus or walk to the castle from here.
We took the shuttle bus to the castle because it would have taken more than 30 minutes to walk.
I didn’t have enough time to take a look at the outside of the castle, so I decided not to visit the inside of the castle, and finished my sightseeing with a light walk around the castle grounds, and returned to the parking lot by shuttle bus.
I am so happy to visit this place in this best season of autumn leaves. I didn’t expect that the autumn leaves in Germany would be so beautiful at first.
But there’s no time! We have to hurry.
The next destination was Liechtenstein Castle. It took about 50 minutes from Hohenzollern Castle. It took more time than I expected. The road was empty.
Originally built at the end of the 12th century as a defensive castle, Liechtenstein Castle was often the scene of disputes between the lords of Liechtenstein and the lords of rival imperial cities. It ceased to be used militarily after the death of the last Liechtenstein knight in 1687, and for less than 200 years after its acquisition by Duke Wilhelm, it served as the headquarters of Liechtenstein’s forestry department and as a base for forestry and hunting.
In the 19th century, it was acquired by the Counts of Württemberg and later the Dukes of Urlach, who transformed it into a romantic medieval German knight’s castle between 1840 and 1842, inspired by the fairy tales of Wilhelm Hauff, and gave it its present form. Today, it is still owned by the descendants of the Dukes of Urlach, who were involved in the conversion in the 19th century.
« Created based on the Official Brochure.
In contrast to the Hohenzollern Castle, this castle is located in the middle of the forest, so we could not see its appearance even if we approached it.
However, Google navigation is accurate and we were able to reach the castle grounds without any problems. We parked in the parking lot and started sightseeing. But it was already 16:00. Not much time left!
This is the entrance. Pay the entrance fee and go inside.
Map of the grounds. The site is not so large.
And inside. There are not so many things to see. Only this castle. It is very beautiful, just like what I have seen in the pictures. I like the fact that it stands on the edge of the cliff. It is quite high.
There was a guided tour inside, but it seemed to be over already because it was late. To be honest, the inside is enough because I’ve seen the castle here and there. Appearance is important. I’m an appearance person.
The view below looks like this. The autumn leaves are beautiful. But also at dusk. The sightseeing time is up around here.