Hohensalzburg Fortress is enthroned on the Festungsberg, high above the rooftops of the Baroque historical district. The biggest fully preserved castle in Central Europe, this emblem of Salzburg draws millions of tourists to our “City of Mozart” every year.
The History of Hohensalzburg Fortress
In the year 1077, archbishop Gebhard had the fortress built and thus changed the Salzburg skyline forever. In the years which followed, his successors drove ongoing development of the fortress architecture. The complex acquired the appearance we recognize today under archbishop Leonhard von Keutschach in 1500. The original purpose of the fortress was to protect the principality and the archbishops from hostile attacks. In all of these years, it has never been captured by foreign troops.
The Museums of Hohensalzburg Fortress
Highlights include the fortress’s many museums: The Fortress Museum itself shows historical exhibits focused on courtly life led by the prince archbishops; the Marionette Museum, the Altes Zeughaus (as of June 2019) as well as the Museum of the Rainer Regiment likewise invite visitors to embark on a journey into the past. Also located on the third floor of the fortress are the Princes’ Chambers, consisting of the Princes’ Hall, the Golden Chamber and the Golden Hall. The furnishings in all of these rooms are original and have remained unchanged since 1501/1502. Particularly impressive: a simulation of the night sky, consisting of gold stars on an azure and royal-blue background as well as the tile stove in the Golden Chamber. A Magical Theater and modern media stations add an innovative touch to the experience!
Visiting the Fortress
The fortress is open year-round. Since 1892, not only can it be reached on foot, but also by means of the Fortress Funicular, which is located in the Festungsgasse. Yet another highlight: Every Sunday at 11:45 in the morning, a fanfare is performed from the Trumpeter’s Tower. The sounds of melodies and festive music performed at the fortress can frequently be heard all the way down in the historical district. Furthermore, this over 900-year-old fortress is the venue for the famous Salzburg Fortress Concerts.
Barrier-free access to the fortress
Thanks to the new lift installed in the Bell Tower (opens June 2019), visitors in wheelchairs now have access to the main courtyard, tavern, Kuenburg Bastion, the Marionette Museum as well as the “Altes Zeughaus”.