Hohensalzburg Castle

Hohensalzburg Castle, locally known as Festung Hohensalzburg, lies in the city of Salzburg, in the province of Salzburg in Austria.

The name Hohensalzburg literally translates to High Salt Castle. This is because it was used as a secure storage place for the produce of the local salt industry who also had to pay a toll when passing the city with their barges.

The hill on which the castle is situated has been used for fortifications since Roman times. The present castle was founded in 1077 by Archbishop Gebhart von Helfenstein during the Investiture Controversy, when he built several castles in and around the Alps in opposition to Henry IV, the Holy Roman Emperor. In the first half of the 12th century the castle was rebuilt and considerably strenghtened by Archbishop Konrad I von Abenberg.

In the first half of the 13th century Archbishop Eberhard II separated Salzburg from the Duchy of Bavaria and formed his own principality. Eberhard then expanded his seat Hohensalzburg Castle into a major stronghold.

During the 1460's Prince-Archbishop Burkhard II von Weisspriach added bastions and 4 round artillery towers to reinforce the castle against the advance in firearms.

In the early 16th century, under Prince-Archbishop Leonhard von Keutschach, Hohensalzburg Castle was again expanded and adapted to the threat of new weaponry and siege tactics. His successor Matthäus Lang von Wellenburg also adapted the castle to the use of advanced artillery. In 1525 he also succesfully defended the castle against the only real siege it would ever endure, during the German Peasants' War. After that the castle was again strengthened, which continued during the 16th century. During that time the castle lost its function as a substitute residence for the sovereign and became a military barracks.

Although the castle was being strenghtened almost continually, it surrendered without a fight to French troops, under General Jean Victor Marie Moreau, during the Napoleonic War of the Second Coalition. This was also the end of clerical rule over Salzburg, which was turned into a military city. In 1815, after the Congress of Vienna, Salzburg was incorporated into the Austrian Empire. In 1861 the city of Salzburg was decommissioned. The castle kept its military function as barracks, a prison and a weapons and ammunition storage depot up until 1945.

Already in 1892 Hohensalzburg Castle became a tourist attraction and was equipped with a funicular railway for tourists.

At present Hohensalzburg Castle can be visited for a fee. It is a very popular tourist destination but also very big so even on busy days it won't feel crowded. A beautiful castle in a beautiful city. Much recommended!


Gallery

Hohensalzburg Castle

Hohensalzburg Castle, locally known as Festung Hohensalzburg, lies in the city of Salzburg, in the province of Salzburg in Austria.

The name Hohensalzburg literally translates to High Salt Castle. This is because it was used as a secure storage place for the produce of the local salt industry who also had to pay a toll when passing the city with their barges.

The hill on which the castle is situated has been used for fortifications since Roman times. The present castle was founded in 1077 by Archbishop Gebhart von Helfenstein during the Investiture Controversy, when he built several castles in and around the Alps in opposition to Henry IV, the Holy Roman Emperor. In the first half of the 12th century the castle was rebuilt and considerably strenghtened by Archbishop Konrad I von Abenberg.

In the first half of the 13th century Archbishop Eberhard II separated Salzburg from the Duchy of Bavaria and formed his own principality. Eberhard then expanded his seat Hohensalzburg Castle into a major stronghold.

During the 1460's Prince-Archbishop Burkhard II von Weisspriach added bastions and 4 round artillery towers to reinforce the castle against the advance in firearms.

In the early 16th century, under Prince-Archbishop Leonhard von Keutschach, Hohensalzburg Castle was again expanded and adapted to the threat of new weaponry and siege tactics. His successor Matthäus Lang von Wellenburg also adapted the castle to the use of advanced artillery. In 1525 he also succesfully defended the castle against the only real siege it would ever endure, during the German Peasants' War. After that the castle was again strengthened, which continued during the 16th century. During that time the castle lost its function as a substitute residence for the sovereign and became a military barracks.

Although the castle was being strenghtened almost continually, it surrendered without a fight to French troops, under General Jean Victor Marie Moreau, during the Napoleonic War of the Second Coalition. This was also the end of clerical rule over Salzburg, which was turned into a military city. In 1815, after the Congress of Vienna, Salzburg was incorporated into the Austrian Empire. In 1861 the city of Salzburg was decommissioned. The castle kept its military function as barracks, a prison and a weapons and ammunition storage depot up until 1945.

Already in 1892 Hohensalzburg Castle became a tourist attraction and was equipped with a funicular railway for tourists.

At present Hohensalzburg Castle can be visited for a fee. It is a very popular tourist destination but also very big so even on busy days it won't feel crowded. A beautiful castle in a beautiful city. Much recommended!


Gallery