Burg Hohenzollern

22 Feb

First and foremost, John’s parents and his sister have landed and are finally here for their FIRST European vacation! We have been so looking forward to sharing this experience with them- it’s something that John’s been excited about since this whole opportunity presented itself last year. So here’s hoping that their next two weeks here in Germany with us are full of fun being had and memories being made ❤

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Welcome to Germany meal

What better way to start a German adventure than with a castle- am I right?! We’d been hearing good things about a castle just an hour away from us, and once we researched it, we decided to save it to do with John’s family. It was lovely.

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Burg Hohenzollern is the ancestral seat of the imperial House of Hohenzollern. The third of three castles on the site, it sits nearly 800 feet up in the foothills of the Swabian Alps. The first fortress on the mountain was constructed in the early 11th century. This castle was completely destroyed in 1423 after a ten-month siege by the free imperial cities of Swabia. A larger and sturdier fortress was constructed from 1454 to 1461, which served as a refuge for the Catholic Swabian Hohenzollerns, including during the Thirty Years’ War. By the end of the 18th century, it was thought to have lost its strategic importance and gradually fell into disrepair, leading to the demolition of several dilapidated buildings. Today, only the medieval chapel remains.

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The final castle was built between 1846 and 1867 as a family memorial by Hohenzollern scion King Frederick William IV of Prussia. Architect Friedrich August Stüler based his design on English Gothic Revival architecture and the Châteaux of the Loire Valley.

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Really a pretty castle, isn’t she? So wish they’d allowed pictures inside the fortress itself because it was equally as pretty- full of rich wood carvings, elaborate jewel-toned fabrics, marble tiled floors…Really elegant.

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I think it’s a requirement that castles have some of the best views in town. Seriously, pick a window, pick a balcony…And soak it all in 🙂

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Underneath Hohenzollern was super cool. You take a tiny winding spiral staircase down into the ground into the ‘casemates,’ which were sandstone cellars used to store weapons, ammunition and valuable as they were virtually indestructible. There are also several secret passages, a staircase to somewhere long forgotten, and pieces of each of the three castles that have stood in the same spot.

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Carved into the stone, believed to be the ‘stamp’ of the mason who was doing the building…in 1654.

Among the historical artifacts of Prussian history contained in the castle are the Crown of Wilhelm II, some of the personal effects of King Frederick the Great, and a letter from US President George Washington thanking Hohenzollern descendant Baron von Steuben for his service in the American Revolutionary War.

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And with that, Sunday Funday was had by all! Now we just have a couple days before we’re headed out on our next big adventure- we’re road trippin’ to Vienna, Austria then on to Budapest, Hungary! So pumped to explore some new cities- afterall, it’s one of the best parts of being here ❤

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2 Responses to “Burg Hohenzollern”

  1. Georgia February 22, 2016 at 8:40 PM #

    What a wonderful experience your family. We are so happy for you. The pictures are great.

  2. Eleanor February 22, 2016 at 7:44 PM #

    Glad the family made it there. I know Neve is super excited to have them there. Love the castle, stain glass windows and the incredible view~! Have a wonderful time on the road trip! Love to all!

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