Burg Eltz Germany – Guide to one of The Rhine Medieval Castles
Burg Eltz Germany nestled in the hills above the Moselle River. Eltz Castle still owned and cared by a branch by the same family (the Eltz family) from when it was built until today.
The Burg (Castle) surrounded on three sides by the Elzbach River, a tributary on the north side of the Moselle. The Moselle snuggled between Koblenz and Trier, Germany.
On the left side of the Rhine, before getting to the Castle itself. You’ll have to pass the Eltz Forest first. A nature reserve by Flora-Fauna-Habitat, and Natura 2000. It is in the center of an attractive hiking region with the award-winning dream hike “Eltz Castle Panorama”
Burg Eltz Germany, located in the town of Münstermaifeld in Wierschem. A municipality in the district of Mayen-Koblenz in Rhineland-Palatinate, western Germany.
The Castle’s History
As we all know that the castle is owned by the Eltz family. The family named it after the stream Eltzbach. According to the old German Els or Else are both names for the black alder, a tree commonly found along rivers.
The Romans named the stream Alisontia, a reference to the old Celtic word for the same tree.
Reading the history of Burg Eltz Germany, it was erected in a strategically important position. In comparison to other Rhine Castles like Bürresheim Castle and Lissingen Castle.
It was built along a trade route that linked the Moselle River (one of the most important trade routes in the German Empire)
The prime period of castle construction was from the 11th to the 13th century (Stauffer dynasty period). In 1157, the family resided in a small castle complex next to the Eltzbach. Parts of this first castle, such as the Romanesque keep Platt-Eltz and four-story of the former Romanesque Pallas.
Years later, the castle and the estate is divided among the three branches. After the 3 brothers (Elias, Wilhelm, and Theoderich) had a dispute and the family split up before 1268.
Currently, Eltz Castle has been in possession of the Eltz family for more than 800 years. The present owner of the castle, Dr. Karl Graf von und zu Eltz-Kempenich, alias Faust von Stromberg, lives in Frankfurt am Main.
The Rübenach and Rodendorf families’ homes in the castle are open to the public. While the Kempenich branch of the family uses the other third of the castle. Visitors can view the treasury, with gold, silver, and porcelain artifacts and the armory of weapons and suits of armor from April to October.
How to reach Burg Eltz Germany
The first thing you need to know before you visit Burg Eltz is that there is a special parking area for visitors. Located approximately 10-15 minutes walk to the Castle.
You can reach the car park at Eltz Castle by car using your cars’ GPS. If you’re going with a motorbike or bus from Münstermaifeld and Wierschem. You can take the Burgenbus 330 (Castle Bus) from the Moselle. Available from May to November on weekends and public holidays.
Are you planning to go there on a bicycle? If you stay at a nearby hotel, it’s obvious to bike to the parking lot, and then walk along the footpath to Burg Eltz.
If you love to hike, then the trail from the Hatzenport Train Station is perfect for you. The walk to the castle would take takes about 80 minutes (5.3 Km)
The footpath to the Castle
As we arrived at the parking area, there’s a stand where you have to pay first before entering the place. We paid 2 euros, and the staff led us to space where we should park the car.
We followed some other visitors who were on their way to the castle as well. They took the traditional footpath walk to the castle. Though there’s another way to go there via shuttle bus we didn’t take it.
The trail wasn’t that long, for only 10 to 15 minutes we already arrived at the entrance of the Castle. There’s no entrance fee to see the castle from the outside.
The only way to go inside the castle is to buy the Burg Eltz Germany tickets. A guided tour will be conducted by one of the castle’s expert guides is included. The tour begins every 10-15 minutes and takes 35-40 minutes.
The Guided Tour of Burg Eltz
When you feel like visiting the interior part of the castle, then it’s better to get your tour guided tickets on the spot. The fees are not that expensive since you have a tour guide who will surely explain to you everything that you should know about the castle and its history.
The fees for Adults is € 10.00, Students and disabled visitors for € 6.50, Students in school classes € 6.00 each, and Family Ticket (2 adults, 2 children) For € 28.00
Since there’s a lot of visitors everyday, there’s a limited amount of people who can join the guided tour. It’s more or less 25 persons only per tour. Sadly, we have missed the English tour on our arrival.
Speaking of languages, there are two types of tour, English, and German. Foreign visitors who can attend a tour will receive a free translation in their own language.
The guided tour expert will show you some of the interesting parts of the castle, especially its Western architecture, and cultural history. First, you’ll get to see The Armoury, Rübenach Upper and Lower Hall, Dressing Room, Elector’s Room, The Knight’s Hall, and many more.
Armory and Treasury of Eltz Castle
The Armoury and Treasury of Eltz Castle comprise one of the most important private collections with more than 500 exhibits from 8 centuries. It is considered one of the most significant collections of its kind in Europe.
The exhibition focuses on artworks by German gold and silversmiths, particularly from Augsburg and Nuremberg. It also displays precious gold and silver artifacts as well as porcelain, jewelry, glass, ivory, coins, curiosities, and weapons from 850 years of family history.
The Armoury and Treasury tour is included on your Burg Eltz ticket. However, on this part, there is no guided tour but you’ll receive a small pamphlet about the information of the exhibition pieces inside.
I strongly recommend you to do this tour first before getting to the guided tour of the interior part of the Eltz Castle.
Get you perfect Panorama Shot
I’m sure you are thinking about how to get a perfect instagrammable shot of this castle. Well, there are ways to get that ambitious shot that you’re aiming. The best way is through hiking to Eltz Castle.
You can take the “Up the Romantic Eltz Stream” (2.5 km, approx. 35 minutes) This trail starts at the Ringelsteiner Mühle in Moselkern and in a light to medium ascent follows the Eltzbach through the nature reserve Eltz Forest to Eltz Castle.
On the other hand, there’s the “Müdener Berg to Eltz Castle” (1.7 km, approx. 35 minutes) This beautiful and sporty route is only for seasoned hikers. It is very steep in parts but offers a unique view of the two castles Eltz and Pyrmont.
It’s pretty sure through those hikes you’ll get the utmost result of Eltz Castle’s beauty.
About our Experience
Visiting one of Rhine’s medieval castles was worth it and gratifying. What a great pleasure to visits a real castle. And for the record, this is my first time to get inside into a real castle, not a ruined one.
It feels very special to get to know some of the history and life of the people living in this place. Knowing who these people are and the journey of passing through 350 family generations which is so fantastic.
I’d definitely recommend you to come and visit the Burg Eltz Germany. You’ll surely love it here!
Visit the castle as early as possible, opening hours are from 9.30 am to 5.30 pm (last guided tour) until 3 November 2019
Burg Eltz Germany