Chateau de Tourbillon, Sion

4.5
Tourbillon Castle is a castle in Sion in the canton of Valais in Switzerland. It is situated on a hill and faces the Basilique de Valère, located on the opposite hill. The castle was ruined in a fire in 1788. It is a Swiss heritage site of national significance.HistoryThe Diocese of Sion was founded in Octodurum, now called Martigny in the early 4th century. In 589 the bishop, St. Heliodorus, transferred the see to Sion, as Octodurum was frequently endangered by the inundations of the Rhone and the Drance. Very little is known about the early Bishops and the early churches in Sion. However, in the late 10th century the last King of Upper Burgundy Rudolph III, granted the County of Valais to Bishop Hugo (998-1017). The combination of spiritual and secular power made the Prince-Bishops the most powerful nobles in the Upper Rhone valley. Sion became the political and religious center of the region. By the 12th century they began building impressive churches and castles in Sion to represent their power and administer their estates. Valère, as the residence of the cathedral chapter in Sion, was one-third of the administrative center of the powerful Diocese of Sion. In the 12th century the Cathedral Notre Dame de Sion (du Glarier) was built in the town below Valère hill. Glarier Cathedral became the seat of the Diocese of Sion, while the Prince-Bishop of Sion lived in the castle.
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Chateau de Tourbillon Reviews
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4.5
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  • fantastic castle ruins but requires good physical condition of the traveller to traverse the many, many steps and incline!  more »
  • I have visited twice the Chateau de Tourbillon a good thing about it is that you are able to see the local team Fc Sion matches  more »
  • When you enter the walled city of Sion, we entered another era. The climb to the castle is steep and is not for everyone. But it's worth it for the views of the Vallée.
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  • Very cool historical ruin, with path, feels like walking to the midvale time. Strongly recommend. esp for watching the airshow~
  • Beautiful place to visit. The views are fantastic. The climb up to the castle is tough but possible
  • The castle is reasonable shape, given its age, it is intriguing to consider what life would have been like to live here. It is at the top of a long climb from town and may be more than some are prepared for, but the view of the surrounding area is why you will make this hike.
  • Must see .. Great history and view
  • Great view from above, climbing not so phisically demanding. Worth going up.

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Where to stay in Sion

Luxury hotels occupy the northern hills, while smaller, charming guesthouses can be found in the old town, north of the train station. Be aware that many of Sion's hotels and guesthouses close during the winter months and remain closed until April. If you're planning to visit during the off-season, stay in Bern, a pleasant car or train ride away.
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