Fortress Hohensalzburg is a real eye-catcher peaking out high above the baroque towers of the city. The castle in Salzburg is an unmistakable landmark providing the city’s world famous silhouette. Even from afar the visitor is able to appreciate the might of this edifice. Up close the history contained in these powerful walls is almost tangible.
Welcome to Fortress Hohensalzburg!
Fortress Hohensalzburg is a monument of over 900 years and is one of the largest existing 11th century fortresses in Europe. Every crevice of the walls, every nook and cranny of this magnificent complex brings forth its own fascinating background information, stories, myths and legends. Look back to the everyday lives of yesteryear as they may well have been in this centre of political power in the days of the archbishops.
Today Fortress Hohensalzburg is a popular destination for trips and outings, and a must-see for every visitor to Salzburg. The highlights include the magnificent regency rooms which are among some of the most beautiful gothic secular chambers in Europe; the great 360° panorama view offered by the ‘Reckturm’ watchtower, and the fantastic and sophisticated atmosphere generated at the numerous fortress concerts.
Then there’s the torture chamber, the illuminated lower church and the fortress museum. Alternatively, pass your time under one of the ancient Tilia trees in the idyllic surroundings of the castle courtyard – even the courtyard has a few stories to tell!
Over the rooftops of Mozart´s city
Fortress Hohensalzburg offers visitors a stunning view of the city of Salzburg and its environs. The Fortress is accessed from Kapitelplatz through the Festungsgasse; visitors can choose between the funicular, departing every 10 minutes, or taking a 20-minute walk to the top.
History of Hohensalzburg Fortress
Built in 1077 by Prince Gebhard I of Helffenstein during the investiture controversy between the German Emperor Heinrich IV and Pope Gregor.
Archbishop Gebhard was forced into exile in 1085, causing his plans to build the stronghold to be carried out by his successors. Today it is considered to be the largest fortification in Europe, covering an area of over 14,000 m². The Fortress is federally owned, although it has been under the Province of Salzburg´s administration since 1953.
The Fortress´s Romanesque walls surround the Great Hall, the living quarters still comprising the main part of the "Hoher Stock" or castle keep. Numerous secondary buildings and a private chapel are part of the fortifications. Colorful events bring new life to the fortress, the romantic courtyard and the bastions all year round.
Fortress Hohensalzburg was newly adapted at the end of the 19th century. It is easily accessed by funicular, installed in 1892, reaching the top in just 1 minute.