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Wilhelmsburg Castle, Schmalkalden

Castle · Thüringer Wald · 316 m · open today
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Lutherweg - Thüringer Tourismus GmbH Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • Wilhelmsburg Castle Schmalkalden Castle Garden
    Wilhelmsburg Castle Schmalkalden Castle Garden
    Photo: Paul Hentschel, Lutherweg - Thüringer Tourismus GmbH
Wilhelmsburg Castle towers above the town of Schmalkalden as its main landmark. The castle was constructed in the late 16th century as the second residence of William IV, Landgrave of Hesse, and was officially inaugurated in 1590.

The building has remained extremely well preserved right through to the present day and is one of the most important monuments of Renaissance architecture in Germany. The four-winged building looks rather simple from the outside but its interior is full of extravagant wall paintings and stucco work. Its original rooms, which are well worth a visit, include the Landgrave's Chamber on the ground floor, a number of different richly decorated ballrooms and the cellar vault, an extremely authentic-looking copy of the vault from the 'Hessenhof' building in Schmalkalden with wall paintings depicting the Iwein epic by Hartmann von Aue that date back to the 13th century.

Another highlight of Wilhelmsburg Castle is the organ that can be found in the castle chapel. This instrument, which was built in 1589, is more than 400 years old and is therefore one of the oldest functioning organs with wooden pipes in the whole of Europe.

The castle's permanent exhibition on 'The Awakening of a New Era' takes visitors back to the times of Martin Luther, the Reformation and the Schmalkaldic League, which was the ultimate defensive power of the Protestant movement.


Opening hours

open today
Monday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Tuesday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Wednesday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Thursday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Friday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Sunday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm

November to March: Monday: closed, Tuesday to Sunday: open from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Profile picture of Paul Hentschel
Paul Hentschel
Update: June 01, 2018

Public transport

Travel to Schmalkalden station with the German railway company Deutsche Bahn. Walk from the station into the town centre.

Getting there

When travelling by car on the B19 main road, take the exit to Niederschmalkalden and continue in the direction of Haindorf/Schmalkalden. Follow Kasseler Straße/Bahnhofstraße and at the second roundabout, take the first exit onto the L1118 in the direction of Steinbach-Hallenberg. After approx. 850m, turn left into Renthofstraße.


The best place to park is in the 'Am Schloß' car park.


50.723079, 10.455441
50°43'23.1"N 10°27'19.6"E
32U 602732 5620041
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike
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Wilhelmsburg Castle, Schmalkalden

Schlossberg 9
98574 Schmalkalden
Phone +493683403186 Fax +493683601682

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