Heidelberg Castle is a ruin located in Germany. The castle is only partially built due to its demolition caused by many wars, pillaging, and fires. It is famous for its remarkable history and is also known as the ‘Red Castle.’ Most of the castle still is in ruins while some rooms are restored.
The King’s Hall, which is also renovated, is still used for many events and festivals. The castle is made up of several buildings. Each building highlights a different period of German architecture. Heidelberg Castle, with its royal vibes and a picture-perfect location, is a tourist attraction of Heidelberg, receiving around 12 million tourists a year. Before paying a visit to this splendid castle, look at some of the interesting things about it.
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Interesting things about Heidelberg Castle
1. Heidelberg Castle is located in the Town of the Same Name!
The castle is located on the Königstuhl hillside in Heidelberg, home to the oldest University of Germany – Heidelberg University. The town is in the German state of Baden-Württemberg on the river Neckar. The presence of the hills near this place makes the huge castle an eye-catching landmark in the town.
2. It is not one but two castles!
After 1294, when the Heidelberg Castle was mentioned, it was described as a double castle. The castle has an upper and lower building. The upper one was on Kleiner Gaisberg Mountain, and the lower castle is at Jettenbühl. The castle was not always as huge as it appears today. In 1404, when Rupert of the Palatine became the King of Germany, the castle was expanded as, according to him, it was way too small.
3. The castle was destroyed several times in its history!
The Heidelberg Castle was struck by lightning twice in the course of its history. One in the year 1537 when the lightning bolt and fire destroyed the upper portion of the castle. The other lightning hit the castle in 1764, heavily damaging it. After this, the castle was permanently abandoned.
The locals even used the ruins of the castle to build up their own houses. The castle was also destroyed by the wars at that time, like the ‘War of the Grand Alliance’ and the ‘War of the League of Augsburg.’ Even then, as you see, the castle is still standing.
4. Tourism paced up after the construction of Railroads!
Tourists frequently visited the Castle in the 1800s after the construction of railroads. Most of the tourists who visit the Castle are from the USA and Japan. Mark Twain, a famous American author, was one of those tourists who were benefitted from the construction of railways. He wrote about the Castle in his travel book “A Tramp Abroad” after visiting Heidelberg in the 19th century.
5. The Heidelberg Castle Festival
The Heidelberg Castle Festival is held annually in March and April at the castle courtyard, also called the ‘Fat Tower,’ where musicals, theatres, operas, concerts, and various genres and performances are performed.
6. The Castle became a perfect spot for Romantic Artists
In around 1800, the castle was rediscovered as an object of Romantic enthusiasm. Many artists found the surrounding hills and river perfect for their arts. One of the most famous Romantic Artists was England’s J.M.W. Turner, who spent many vacations here and painted Heidelberg and the castle many times.
7. The castle has the world’s largest wine barrel!
The Heidelberg Tun is a very large wine vat located within the cellars of the Heidelberg Castle. There have been only four such barrens in the entire history of Heidelberg. It is rarely used as a wine barrel and also as a dance floor due to the construction of one on the top of the barren. One can climb the set of stairs and dance on the Schuhplattler.
8. You can get married in the Castle!
Yes! You can arrange a civil wedding inside the castle anywhere from February to December. In 2009, the castle was made available for public weddings. The place is a highly desirable venue for occasions like those who don’t want to get married in a Royal Palace?
9. The castle was once next to the eighth wonder of the world
Fredrik V, also known as the ‘Winter King,’ ordered the ‘Hortus Palatinus’ construction in 1614. This garden was one of the most beautiful Renaissance gardens ever made. This garden became so famous that it was then referred to as ‘Eighth Wonder of the World.’
10. The castle was once guarded by a Court Dwarf
Charles III Philip was in charge of the castle during the late 17th century. He stored large quantities of wine at the castle. Thus, he required someone to watch over it. That’s the reason he appointed ‘Perkeo of Heidelberg’ to guard the place.
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Things to do at Heidelberg Castle
Heidelberg Castle is stretched across a vast area. The place is a main attraction of Heidelberg, and there are many things to do and explore in the castle.
- Give a visit to the German Pharmacy Museum in Ottheinrichsbau, which displays a large collection of old stuff used in pharmacies in older times.
- You can walk around the gardens and enjoy the beautiful views over Heidelberg and the Neckar.
- Don’t forget to visit the Heidelberg Tun, which holds 220,000 liters.
- Some restaurants offer relaxation after you are done sightseeing.
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These interesting things about the castle spark curiosity in one’s mind to know more about the castle’s past and present. Heidelberg Castle is an amazing place full of interesting facts, historical past, and a beautiful environment and surroundings. The hillside view of the castle is a cherry on top. The sight of the city from the castle is just breathtaking, with the amazing views of Heidelberg, the Neckar River, and the Neckar Valley.
Do give a visit to Heidelberg Castle, one of the most remarkable places in Europe to visit.