Ruins of Hohenurach Castle
Built in the 11th century by the Counts of Urach and expanded to a fortress in the 16th century under the Dukes of Württemberg, the castle has been in ruins since 1765 and has become Bad Urach's most famous landmark.
The first documented record of Hohenurach Castle dates from 1235. Count Ludwig I of Württemberg updated the castle in 1427, building a new castle on the existing foundations. Following heavy damage in 1547 during the Schmalkaldic War, Duke Christoph of Württemberg had the castle rebuilt in 1551. From the 16th century onwards, the castle complex also served as a state jail, whose inmates included the Tübingen Professor Nicodemus Frischlin (1547-1590).
As a military facility Hohenurach Fortress also posed a constant threat to the citizens of the nearby town. It wasn't until 1765, however, that Duke Carl Eugen of Württemberg decided to move his soldiers to the town and had Hohenurach Fortress torn down. All that remains of the castle site is a towering ruin – one of the biggest, mightiest and most important ruins in southern Germany.
The castle ruins are free to explore, but can only be accessed on foot.