Romantic, medieval Burg Eltz Castle near Koblenz in Germany is open daily during the summer season. Tickets for the treasury and guided tours are sold at the fortress.
Burg Eltz is considered by many to be the most romantic of Germany’s around 20,000 castles and castle ruins. Despite its somewhat isolated location, it is absolutely worth the effort needed to get there. In contrast to almost all other castles in the Rhine and Mosel Valleys, Burg Eltz is an authentic medieval castle and not a romanticized, nineteenth-century replica.
Opening Hours for Burg Eltz Castle
Due to its isolated location – the traditional approach is on foot via unpaved trails – Burg Eltz is only open during the summer season.
Burg Eltz is usually open for visitors from early April or late March to early November. The exact opening period is announced annually and moves around depending on the dates of Easter and weekends close to the opening or closing day.
The castle is open daily during the season from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm. Guided tours starts as needed but usually depart at least every 15 minutes.
Tickets for Burg Eltz Castle
Tickets are sold only at the ticket window at the castle itself. Admission is €10 for adults and €6.50 for children and students. A family ticket (€28) is valid for two adults and two or more children. Reservations are not possible for individuals.
Tickets give admission to the treasury as well as the compulsory guided tour of the castle. The treasury is seen without a tour and displays art, jewelry, and historic utensils belonging to the family.
Tour of Burg Eltz Castle
The interior of Burg Eltz can only be seen on a guided tour lasting around 40 minutes. Some interesting facts pointed out during guided tours include:
- The castle has around 100 rooms, which housed around 100 family members during the seventeenth century. (Staff was quartered outside the fortified area.)
- In contrast to its contemporaries where only a few rooms per castle were heated, 40 fireplaces could heat 80 of the castle’s rooms.
- Burg Eltz had 20 flushable toilets – 20 more than the Palace of Versailles or virtually any other European castle or palace.
- The chapel is in a bay window to ensure no one lives “above” God.
- In the Knights’ Hall, where family conferences were held, the two masks of fools (die Narrenköpfe) indicated that everyone could speak his mind freely while the rose of silence (die Rose des Schweigens) signaled that matters discussed in the hall were only for the ears of those present.
Tours are in German but guides often speak English and will point out special sights to non-German speakers too. If enough English speakers are present, a tour will be in English only.
If necessary, ask for the English information sheet when buying tickets or at the castellan’s office (Kastellanei) before the tour starts. This is especially important when a German speaker buys the tickets. The information sheet is also available in Chinese, French, Italian, Japanese, Dutch, Portuguese, Russian or Spanish.
Burg Eltz has been owned for around 800 years by the Eltz family who takes care to preserve the castle’s historical appearance despite using parts as residence. Transportation to Burg Eltz usually involves some hiking although drivers can get to within half a mile of the building.