Hohensalzburg Castle

Hohensalzburg castle is the most majestic feature of the Austrian city of Salzburg, located atop the Festungsberg and overlooking the city.

author:Andre Bonacin

Photos provided by Panoramio are under the copyright of their owners

One of the largest and most fully preserved medieval castles in Europe, Hohensalzburg castle was built between the second half of the 11th century and the middle of the 15th century. Construction started under commission of Archbishop Gebhard. The original design of the fortress was a basic bailey, but the powerful Archbishops of Salzburg expanded it according to their interests.

One of them implemented a primitive funicular railway early 16th century, which still exists today in its updated form and is probably the oldest operational railway in the world.

The Hohensalzburg castle was never conquered and in the 20th century, it became a prison. Today it is a major tourist attraction, with a cable car called Festungsbahn connecting it to the town.

The prominent castle dominates Mozart's city in unreal shades of pink at sunset, austere and powerful above all the towers and cupolas of the city : the Dome of the Collegiate Church, the tower of the Franciscan Church, the Baroque tower of St. Peters church, lit by spotlights against the night sky.

The medieval atmosphere can still be recalled in the white Romanesque walls with round towers surrounding the vast courtyard and the Great Hall, the intricate Gothic wood carvings, coats of arms and paintings in the Golden Hall and the Golden Chamber, in the living quarters or the castle keep, in the romantic courtyard and the bastions and, of course, in the torture chamber with its ungodly devices. In the interior there are exhibitions on display, from temporary displays to weapons and armour.

The Hohensalzburg Castle hosts a great number of special events such as the St. George Cavalcade, the Medieval festivals and the famous Salzburg Fortress Concerts. It also offers romantic nigth tours, markets and fairs. The Castle also holds a number of educational programs on the history of the castle and its past residents, debates on castles in literature, such as the famous Nibelungenlied and Parsifal, retelling of the old legends surrounding the castle.

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Hohensalzburg Castle

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