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Europe’s largest citadels

Deutsches Eck Aerial View, Koblenz (foreground: Ehrenbreitstein) (photo: Koblenz Touristik)
Deutsches Eck Aerial View, Koblenz (foreground: Ehrenbreitstein) (photo: Koblenz Touristik)

“Castles, citadels and fortresses like these four are of great historical significance even today. The centuries-old monuments are bastions of German history and represent milestones in the development of society up to the present”, as Björn Rudek (Director of Historic Highlights of Germany e.V.) summarizes. “They are not just rigid stone fortifications but vivid contemporary witnesses waiting to be discovered interactively.”

Koblenz

The “Festung Ehrebreitstein” (Ehrenbreitstein Fortress), one of Koblenz‘s landmarks and second-largest preserved fortress in Europe, looks down on the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers at the “Deutsches Eck” (German Corner) and back on an eventful history.

More about Ehrenbreitstein in Koblenz

Festung Ehrenbreitstein, Koblenz (photo: Koblenz Touristik)
Festung Ehrenbreitstein, Koblenz (photo: Koblenz Touristik)

Fortress Ehrenbreitstein

Mainz

Not far from Koblenz is one of the few remaining modern citadels of Germany. In the Mainzer Zitadelle (Citadel of Mainz) you encounter 200 years of the city’s history in a very confined space.

“Particularly exciting are the subterranean passages”, explains Kay-Uwe Schreiber, chairman of the “Initiative Zitadelle Mainz e.V.” (Mainz Citadel Initiative)

“The defenders probably wanted to get from A to B without being seen by the enemy. There were certainly no subterranean passages in any other citadels.” Those who are interested can discover the citadel and its distinctiveness on a tour that runs above as well as below ground.
Wikipedia Website: Mainz Citadel – Wikipedia

Erfurt

Europe’s largest citadel in Erfurt also fascinates its visitors with an unusual guided tour, here the old passageways are explored with torches. “This makes the experience particularly authentic and full of atmosphere”, says Erfurt Tourism & Marketing. “Visitors can get a feeling for what life used to be like back then. Thus the legends of the citadel’s diverse history are brought back to life.”

Würzburg

In Würzburg, the “Festung Marienberg” (Marienberg Fortress) sits up high above the city – a symbol which can be seen from afar. The impressive monument houses the “Mainfränkisches Museum” (Main-Franconian Museum) with the world’s largest exhibition of artworks by the famous sculptor Tilman Riemenschneider.

Also recommended for Würzburg visitors: The Prince’s Garden: From here, visitors enjoy a magnificent view over the city.

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