In the fourteenth and in the fifteenth century the castle was surrounded by boundaries with defensive towers. It has two gatewats in the North-West side and after the second gateway there is the hole of the guards built in 1703.
Inside the boundaries of the castle you can see the original structure of a medieval castle. The heart of the castle is the wide courtyard with the well and all around there are the buildings for the maintenance of the castle.
The castle is closed on Monday.
The castle is built on a hill over the Wormitz river and the town of Harburg. The castle was made by the Hohenstaufen family before 1150. Later on it was taken by the Oettingen family and from 1731 it belongs to the Oettingen-Wallerstein family.
The little town of Harburg was nothing spectacular but charming in it's own was. Like most of Germanys towns near castles it has old part which is simply stunning. Sadly, that day was raining like mad, but it was still pretty.
Unfortunatly, my husband and didn't visit the castle with a tour. We were visiting friends who live near and decided to see what's going on in the "neighbourhood". Sadly, people that we were visiting knew nothing to tell us about this castle and never hadthe interest to visit it, eventhough it is just 10 minutes drive from them...
It is interesting that the castle is mentioned first in 1150. but it's construction and name give that it is much older than that. From architectual stand, castles like this were built to defend teritory from hungarian attacts in 10th century. And it's name "harburg" indicates at least 11th century for the castles from 12th and 13th cent. had names like "Schenkenstein" or "Rabeneck" etc.
This castle is on the Romantic Road and with 220m long and 120m wide it isone of the castles with largest area from Hohenstaufen period.
In 1150. it was first mentioned by Heinrich. a 13-year old son and co-regent of the Hohenstaufen King Konrad III. The Ryal couple was at the time in Byzantium and Heinrich wrote them a letter informing them that he will ride from Harburg castle to Castle Flochberg in order to liberate it from Welf VI. Eventhough he was practicaly a child, Heinrich emerged as victor, but later that same year he died... Impressive for a 13-year old! And look at todays 13-year olds....
Castles are one of the things I love about Germany. This "Harburg" Castle is one of Southern germanys oldest and best preserved castles. It is assumed that it originates from the first half of 11th century but it is first mentioned in 1150. by King Heinrich as "castrum nostrum" i.e. "our castle".
Harburg castle is a well maintained castle with a nice courtyard. There is a tour through some parts of the castle, which is well worth the price. It moves quickly enough to keep your interest, but not too fast.
The Castle is surrounded by several interesting service buildings: Kastenbau - an antique grain warehouse, and the Castle of XVI century Burgvog transformed now in small and picturesque hotel-restaurant. Oldest of the kept parts of the Castle - the Tower of Thieves, concerns to XII century. In Furstebau, a building of XVI century, the invaluable art collection is stored.
Today the Castle is one of the most kept ensembles of such type in the south of Germany. It represents mixture of various architectural styles of seven centuries. It is possible to reach the basic court yard if to cross a number of protective medieval constructions.
While wandering around the castle, we found this little "window" in some dirty and deserted corner that none visits. We loved the view from it and couldn't resist taking a picture...
This well was originally 129 meters deep! On left, you can see Baker's Building and the corner that you see on the right belongs to Princely House.
The halls of the Castle arranged in strict style, they are decorated by kesson ceilings. Inhabitants of the Castle collected this art collection in current of centuries.