your royal tour of germany
High above the town of Sigmaringen and perched dramatically on a mountain top, Germany’s 2nd largest palace, the Hohenzollern Castle with its 450 rooms, documents not only the turbulent history of the House of Hohenzollern but houses one of the most important private collections of armouries in Europe.
More than any other castle in Germany, the Hohenzollern residence offers a truly unique programme of guided tours to its visitors.
Sigmaringen Castle has been the home of the Swabian branch of the family since 1535. For a millennium, the Hohenzollern acted as counsellors for emperors, generals and regiment officers.
In 1806 the Catholic line of the House of Hohenzollern was granted full sovereignty over the principality. Still, after only four decades, Prince Karl Anton handed over his power to the Prussian branch of the House of Hohenzollern, hoping to contribute to the unification of Germany and Europe.
He was appointed prime minister of Prussia by King William I, therefore acting as a predecessor of Otto von Bismarck. Thanks to close ties to the reigning families in Europe, Sigmaringen Castle was at the centre of European history: from 1861 the Princes of the House of Hohenzollern reigned over Romania and the daughters of Prince Karl Anton married members of the Portuguese and Belgian Royal families respectively. One of his daughters is the great-great-grandmother of Philip, now King of Belgium.
Nowadays, the Hohenzollern family dedicates itself to promoting culture, tourism and the economy as well as taking active parts in many social matters.
It is assumed that an early Roman and Alemannic settlement already existed on the crag over the Danube, but possible remains stay well hidden under the medieval castle walls. Hohenzollern was first mentioned in the 11th century but the earliest construction, still visible today, dates back to the 12th century. Two hundred years later, the castle reached today´s extension with more than 450 rooms. Destruction during the Thirty Years´ War, a devastating fire in 1893 and the subsequent reconstruction of the building, account for the castle´s appearance today with its eclectic style, providing some interesting insights into the history of German architecture.
For hundreds of years the European aristocracy met at Sigmaringen Castle and the family of Hohenzollern still owns the castle today.
Not all of the 450 rooms are open to the public but daily guided tours lead visitors through a selection of beautifully furnished rooms and parlours. More than 30 special tours provide fascinating insights into the life at the court of a once powerful dynasty.
Our numerous special tours were created to meet the expectations of different age groups.
Full of atmosphere, the castle hosts romantic concerts as well as special exhibitions in the Museum with its Tudor architecture.
For more information on Sigmaringen Castle, please click here.