The Braunfels Castle (Schloss Braunfels) soars 100 m (328 ft) above the Lahn valley.
The town of Braunfels is, of course, renowned for its spectacular, romantic castle, but also as a destination for spa tourism.
Braunfels Castle was the royal residence of the Counts of Solms. Their descendants, in fact, still own the castle to this day.
About The Braunfels Castle And Its History
The first traces of Braunfels Castle go all the way back to the year 1246.
The palace’s appearance has changed much over the years, with new additions to the complex as well as the destruction of other parts. In 1679, much of Braunfels was incinerated in a terrible fire. Count Heinrich Trajektin was responsible for the reconstruction.
In 1845, Braunfels Castle underwent a renovation at the hands of the “Hunter Prince” Ferdinand who rebuilt parts of it in the Gothic Revival style and added its famous Knights Hall.
The castle got yet another makeover just 35 years later by Prince George. He is the man to thank for the castle’s present look. Much of its unique features, like the towers and bay windows, can be attributed to him.
Braunfels Castle Highlights And Features
This wild park and zoo was created in 1704 by Wilhelm Moritz Graf zu Solms-Braunfels. The Forsthaus Tiergarten showcases wild boar, mouflon and fallow deer.
If this wasn’t enough of a draw for nature lovers, others may be attracted by the fact that a day pass to this kingly park and zoo is absolutely free. :-)
The Counts and Princes of Solms-Braunfels have their private collections on display at the Family museum (Familienmuseum). You can view the hunting rifles of Ferdinand, the letters of Emperor Charles VII and uniform of Count Heinrich Trajektin, which was worn during his final battle.
Ladies need not worry that this is a men-only museum. You can also view the exquisite dresses of the queens and princesses, as well as some of their priceless jewelry. :-)
The castle contains an impressive collection of art, which may be viewed by the public.
Braunfels Castle Location And Opening Hours
The city lies right between the Autobahn A5/A45 (Frankfurt-Kassel/Wetzlar) and A3 (Frankfurt-Cologne). Then from either Wetzlar or Limburg, head to the smaller highway, the Bundesstraße B49. From the B49 (regardless of which direction you are driving) you will take the exits for Leun / Braunfels. After that, it’s just a 3 km (1.8 mi) ride to the city center where you can follow the signs to Braunfels Castle.
If you own a GPS, simply type in Braunfels for the city and In den Anlagen for the street. Parking is simple and free; you’ll find it at the Jahnplatz parking lot right next to the imposing walls of the castle.
For those using public transportation to get here, it is quite convenient and easily accessible. Trains run from all around the country to the ICE high-speed train stop Limburg as well as the Lahntal station Leun / Braunfels. The trains usually arrive at least once an hour, sometimes more. The station is 4 km (2.4 mi) away from the Castle, so you will need to walk, take a cab or find a bus.
Other buses will connect you from the nearby city of Wetzlar to the Braunfels city center.
Braunfels Castle Opening Hours
The opening hours of Braunfels Castle change with the seasons. In the summertime (from April 1 to October 31), the castle is open daily. Guided tours begin at 11:00 a.m and depart each hour. The museum closes at dusk. Winter opening times are more limited, with the castle only open on weekdays, public holidays (yes, even on Christmas Day) and school breaks.