Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg, France (with Map & Photos)

Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg is a fortified mountain castle, which is located near the city of Sélestat, halfway between Strasbourg and Mulhouse. It can be seen in a radius of about thirty kilometers, especially from Colmar and, of course, from Sélestat, the city that is almost at its feet.

Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg
Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg

From the top of the Stophanberch mountain, at an altitude of 757 m, the Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg (whose name means Castle of the King ) attracts attention as you approach Sélestat. In addition to its altitude, its silhouette and its distinctive color, coming from the pink sandstone of the Vosges with which it is built, its excellent state of conservation is surprising. From there you have incredible views of the Alsace Plain, the Vosges and the Black Forest and, on a clear day, it is not uncommon to see the Alps.

Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg
Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg

Although it dates from the 12th century, it was completely restored in the 20th century and currently attracts more than 500,000 visitors each year. This castle stands out for its architecture: monumental doors, spiral staircase, drawbridge, weapons room, dungeons and cannons...

Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg has also been used as a filming location for several films, such as Jean Renoir's " The Great Illusion " and several documentaries. It even inspired John Howe, the illustrator of the Lord of the Rings sketches to create the citadel of Minas Tirith. And also to the Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki for his " Howl's Moving Castle."

Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg
Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg

History of the Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg


Built in the 12th century on a rocky spur, the Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg (which you will also find written as Haut-Königsbourg, its German name) has lived a very eventful history, becoming the most visited historical site in Alsace.

How is the visit of the Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg


Already from the outside, the Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg imposes. With its high and thick pink sandstone walls, artillery towers, 62-meter-high guard tower and star-shaped bastion, it can be seen from far away. Although we went in the summer, it was very early and in this area it was still foggy, so the castle from a distance looked spooky.

Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg Map