Best Castles near Zurich

Τhe vibrant and culturally rich Swiss city of Zurich is a charming combination of natural scenery and bustling city streets, with a thriving financial centre as well as a growing hip and artistic scene that attracts a real variety of visitors every year. As well as the enchanting city itself, Zurich also has a multitude of historic castles that occupy its outskirts, which make for perfect cultural day-trips from the metropolis. This list will highlight the best castles near Zurich, their key points of interest, as well as practical information, such as location, and opening and closing times.

The best 10 castles to visit near Zurich

1. Uster Castle

Situated just outside of the centre of Zurich in the municipality of Uster lies the gorgeous Uster Castle, which is an impressive hilltop castle that is believed to have been built around the year 1200, by the House of Rapperswil. One of the key features that attract visitors to Uster Castle is its unique and intriguing architecture; it consists of a core tower with an outer structure, and it has fantastic interiors as well, which are open to the public to visit.

Where: Uster

When: 1200

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 10:00am – 16:00pm

2. Castle Kyburg

Castle Kyburg is a beautiful castle that overlooks the incredible Toss River; it is situated in the Kyburg municipality of Switzerland and makes for a perfect day trip from Zurich. It is believed that the first fortification on this site was built in the second half of the 10th century, by the Counts of Winterthur. The original castle was destroyed by Conrad II in either the year 1028 or 1030, though it was soon rebuilt. Over the following centuries, the castle was rebuilt and renovated on several different occasions, until it finally became a museum in the 19th century.

Where: Winterthur

When: 10th century

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 10:00am – 17:00pm

3. Regensberg Castle

The beautiful Regensberg Castle is a stunning medieval hilltop castle that was constructed by the House of Regensberg in the mid-13th century; it is situated in the municipality of Regensberg and is the perfect place to visit for a day trip from Zurich. The architecture of Regensberg Castle is charming; it consists of an upper castle, and a lower castle, which was added in the 14th century. There are also remnants of the 13th-century castle, in the form of the round tower, which is incredibly well-preserved, and very much in its original state.

Where: Regensberg

When: 13th century

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 9:00am – 17:00pm

You might be interested in: Famous castles to visit in Switzerland. 

4. Meersburg Castle

The stunning Meersburg Castle, or as it is sometimes known as, Alte Burg, is an impressive medieval castle in the town of Meersburg, which is perched scenically upon Lake Constance in Baden-Wurttemberg, in Germany. This is one of the oldest inhabited castles in the whole of Germany; there are remains that date back to the 7th century. The original castle has changed shape over the years, and many parts of it were destroyed; in the 18th century, a New Castle was constructed, and both of these castles are visible and accessible to this day. Meersburg Castle is a fantastic place to visit as a day trip from Zurich; the town itself is lovely, and the castles offer so much history.

Where: Meersburg

When: 7th-century origins

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 9:00am – 18:00pm

5. Lenzburg Castle

Located in the beautiful and historic town of Lenzburg in the Canton of Aargau, lies the gorgeous Lenzburg Castle, an incredibly important and old Swiss landmark. The castle is situated upon a 504 m hill, which towers above the town below, and it is built upon historic Neolithic burial grounds.

Though the castle has been rebuilt and renovated on several different occasions throughout the centuries, the original castle dates back to around 1036, and part of this original castle still stands today. Lenzburg Castle was originally built as the seat of the Counts of Lenzburg, and today, it is a listed heritage site of national significance and is open to the public.

Where: Lenzburg

When: 11th century

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 10:00am – 17:00pm

6. Castle Hallwyl

Castle Hallywl is an impressive and important moated castle in Switzerland; the castle is situated upon two islands that are located in the River Aabach, which is in Switzerland’s Seengen municipality. The first mention of this castle dates back to the year 1256, though there is some evidence to suggest that the castle was actually constructed at the end of the 12th century.

It was originally the home of the Lords of Hallywl, and it consisted of a large residential tower, which was expanded during the 14th century. In the 19th century, the castle was partially rebuilt on the contemporary Neo-Gothic architectural style, though in 1914, this was largely reversed. Today, the castle is open to the public.

Where: River Aabach

When: 12/13th century

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 10:00am – 15:00pm

7. Meggenhorn Castle

Situated outside of the Swiss city of Lucerne, in the town of Meggen, lies one of the most gorgeous castles in the whole country, Meggenhorn Castle. It was originally constructed in the 19th century, between the years 1868 and 1870, by the architect Edouard Hofer-Grosjean; it was constructed in the popular and contemporary Neo-Gothic architectural style, and it has some incredible features, such as its dramatic turrets, Gothic arched windows and doorways. The castle today is enveloped by vineyards, and it functions primarily as a tourist attraction, though it does also serve as a venue.

Where: Meggen

When: 19th century

Style: Neo-Gothic

Open for visit: 10:00am – 17:00pm

8. Wildegg Castle

Wildegg Castle was originally founded in around the year 1242, and it has a primarily military history; it played a critical role in sending forces to support and defend in the conflict against the Turish invasion of Vienna in the late 17th century. The castle houses a fascinating museum, as well as some impressive gardens, which attract a huge volume of visitors; it is a great day trip from Zurich.

Where: Wildegg

When: 13th century

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 9:00am – 18:00pm

9. Laufen Castle at the Rheinfalls

Laufen Castle is an impressive castle located in the Laufen-Uhwiesen municipality, and it has a truly vast heritage; its first mention dates back to the year 858 when it was resided in by the Barons of Laufen until it was later passed over. The castle is today open to the public, where visitors can discover its expansive history and all of the gorgeous original features.

Where: Laufen-Uhwiesen

When: 9th century

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 10:00am – 17:00pm

10. Heidegg Castle

Originally constructed between the 12th and 13th centuries, Heidegg Castle is an impressive and fascinating fortress that served as the Home of the Lords of Heidegg; it is today a Swiss Heritage Site of National Significance, and attracts many visitors, equally for its history, and its stunning views. There is also an interesting museum housed on the site, and many people come to explore its history as a day trip from Zurich.

Where: Hitzkirch

When: 12th/13th century

Style: Medieval

Open for visit: 10:00am – 16:00pm

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