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Hellenstein Castle, Heidenheim

(35+ reviews on the web)
Castle
Hellenstein Castle is located 70m above the city of Heidenheim an der Brenz in eastern Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It was once the home of the Lords of Hellenstein.The castle was first built during the 12th century by the Hellenstein family. In 1273 the castle passed out of the control of the Hellensteins and had several owners before coming under the control of the Dukes of Württemberg. On August 5, 1530 the old castle burned to the ground and was rebuilt during the mid-16th century. At the end of the century it was expanded on its eastern flank to create a new castle. During the 17th and early 18th century the castle was at its peak as a symbol of the Württemberg dukes. Around 1762 the family could no longer maintain the castle and it began to fall into disrepair. Eventually some of the stones were sold off as building material.In 1901 the former castle church was acquired by the Folk and Ancient History Society of Heidenheim as a museum. The museum expanded throughout the first half of the 20th century, until in 1956 the entire castle was rebuilt as a museum. In 1993 the city of Heidenheim took over the museum from the Society. Today the castle contains several museums which are open from March 15 until November 15 Tuesday through Sunday.HistoryThe site is first mentioned in 1096 by Gozbert de Halensteine whose family may have built the castle in the early 12th century. Within the castle wall there are many buckel stones (squared stone blocks with a rounded or rough outer surface) that date from this time period. The castle remained in the hands of the Hellensteins until 1273 when the male line died out. For almost eighty years the castle passed through several owners. In 1351 the counts of Helfenstein acquired the castle and ruled it for nearly a century, until 1448. Finally in 1503 the castle came under the control of the dukes of Württemberg.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Such a wonderful castle! Be sure to see both museums, the castle itself with armor and the chapel but also the Coaches, Carriages and Carts (Chaisen) Museum. Wonderful views from castle hill of the Ha...  more »
  • We visited during winter. Still the mountain hike was very interesting. You can go by a vehicle of you can climb the mountain through stares. Surrounding was very nice with very lite snow. trees were ...  more »
  • We went to see a opera performance outdoors at the castle. Beautiful venue, helpful staff. Get there early, as parking can be a nightmare when many other events are happening as well. Be prepared to w...  more »