6 Must-See Castles in Austria
Güssing castle towers over the settlement on a 310 meters high hill in the place of which the Wolfer and Hendrik brothers built a monastery in the middle of the 12th century. Wolfer became the ancestor of the famous Németújvári or Kőszegi family.
Later a royal castle was built in the place of the monastery, which was rebuilt in 1263. The Austrian Duke Albert took it in 1289, but King András III and Iván Kőszegi took it back in 1291.
King Charles Robert confiscated Güssing from the Kőszegi family and it was still a royal castle during the reign of Louis the Great.
King Sigismund gifted Németújvár to László Sárói in 1391, whose descendants possessed it until 1457. After that the castle went over into Miklós Újlaki's property.
King Louis II gave it as a gift to Count Ferenc Batthyány in 1524, when the Újlaki family had hied out. It was fortified with a bastion defense wall in the 16th century.
Németújvár is now a castle museum after having been restored and a castle chapel is also open to the public.
It's romantic, beautiful Schlaining castle was already mentioned in the 13th century. It was in the possession of Henrik Németújvári at the time, who later played it into the Checz King Otto's hand in 1270.
King László IV besieged Szalónak without success in 1274, however, its gates were opened for the Austrian Duke Albert in 1289. King Charles Robert took the castle in 1340 and King Sigismund gave it to the Tompek family of Oroszvár.
When Szalónak passed into Austrian hands again, András Baumkircher took possession of it and rebuilt the castle.
Later the Kanizsai, Újlaki, and Batthyány possessed the castle in the 16th century rebuilding it completely.
Ferenc Schmidt owned a part of the castle at the beginning of the 20th century, then it went back to the Batthyány whose valuable collections are now on display in the museum of the castle.
Bernstein castle was supposedly built at the beginning of the 13th century as a border castle. Frederick, Prince of Austria, possessed it from 1231, but King Béla IV took it back from him in 1260 and gave it to Henrik Kőszegi who let the Checz King Otto have it in 1270.
When Hungary got the castle back a year later, it went back into the possession of Henrik Kőszegi. His son, Iván Kőszegi rebelled against the Hungarian King László IV, who laid siege to Borostyánkő in 1283, but failed to take it.
Only the Austrian Duke Albert succeeded in capturing the castle in 1289, but King Endre III took it back from him in 1292. In 1336, King Charles Robert took the castle form János Kőszegi making it a royal property again.
The Kanizsai family possessed Borostyánkő from 1388 and Frederick captured it in 1445. During the reign of King Ferdinánd III, the castle was on Hungarian soil again.
In 1644, the Batthyánys bought it and kept it until 1864, when it became the property of the Irish Ede Egan who rebuilt it completely.
In 1892, the castle went over into the property of the Almásy family. Today, Bernstein castle is a hotel with a fine view over the surrounding landscape.
Landsee castle was built in the 13th century and it reverted to the crown from Miklós, son of Barc of the Szák clan. The bailiff of Locsmánd, Lőrinc of the Aba clan got it as a grant from King Béla IV, his descendants, first the Atyinai then that Garai family, possessed it fron 1424.
Austrian Duke Albert got hold of Lánzsér as a pledge around 1445, and it fell into Sigismund Weisprach's hand in 1449. Archbishop of Esztergom, Miklós Oláh, purchased the castle in 1553 and gave it to Miklós Császár in 1561.
Through his daughter, the castle went over into Ferenc Dersy'S property. Miklós Esterházy married Orsolya Dersy, so it became the property of the Esterházy family remaining theirs until the 20th century. The family made it a manorial residence.
The castle blew up together with its garrison due to a gunpowder explosion in 1707. It was rebuilt in Baroque style and was occupied in 1772, when it burnt to ashes and has been in ruins ever since.
Landsee castle is still an awe-inspiring sight for visitors even in its ruins.
Kobersdorf castle was built at the end of the 13th century. King László gave it to Márk Csák's son in 1280 who let Simon Nagymartoni have it. It was the Kőszegi family that took it from them.
King Charles Robert took back the csatle in 1319and gave it back to Simon'S descendants. In later days, half of Kabold went over into Duke Albert's proprietorship by foreclosure who sold it to Frederick III in 1451.
King Matthias gave Kabold castle to Sigismund Weisprach in 1466. Then the Devecseri Csoron family took possession of it in the 16th century. Then the Kéri family of Ipolykér got it from them in 1638.
Kabold passed over into the property of the Esterházy family who rebuilt it in Baroque style and possessed it until the 20th century.
It is worth visiting the water castle dating back to Gothic times.
Simon Nagymartoni's sons built Forchtenstein castle in 1317. Another line of the family, the Fraknóis, obtained half of the castle in 1346 when it was first mentioned in written documents.
Fraknó was given to the Austrian Duke Albert in 1440 who sold it to his brother Frederick III in 1451. Then King Matthias took the castle back and gave it to his son, John Corvin in 1488.
The castle went back into Frederick III's possession in 1491 again according to the peace treaty of Pozsony.
Count Miklós Esterházy got Fraknó as a pledge in 1622, then as a donation forever in 1626, rebuilding it into a fortified castle and adding a castle chapel in 1642. Leopold I made his son, Pál, a prince in 1687.
Today, the Baroque style Forchtenstein castle is a museum with the equestrian statue of Pál Esterházy standing in its court.
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