Falkenstein Castle or Castrum Pfronten is a High Middle Ages castle ruin in the Bavarian Alps, near Pfronten, a town in southern Germany. The ruin’s German name is Burg Falkenstein ("Castle Falcon Stone"). At 1,268 meters above sea level, it is Germany’s most elevated castle ruin. Originally known as Castrum Pfronten, the stone castle was built approximately 1270-1280 by Count Meinhard II von Tirol on the borders of his land (Tyrol). Because of the unusual situation of the Castle it has been interpreted in historical context as a symbol of opposition to the Duchy of Bavaria. In winter the castle was uninhabitable because of the high altitude at which it is located. The name Castle Falkenstein only came into use in the 15th century. The castle was largely destroyed in the 17th century. King Ludwig II of Bavaria purchased the ruin in 1883 and planned to transform the site into a magnificent fairy tale schloss (formerly schloß). The plans were abandoned upon his death in 1886.
Keywordsancient castles, Falkenstein Castle, Castrum Pfronten, Middle Ages castle, Bavarian castles, Burg Falkenstein, Castle Falcon Stone, King Ludwig II, Pfronten, Count Meinhard II von Tiral
GalleriesGerman Buildings and Monuments
DeColange, Leo The Heart of Europe from the Rhine to the Danube (Boston, MA: Estes and Lauriat, Publishers, 1883)