Our 10 Favorite Castles in Luxembourg… A Quite Personal Affair

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Did you know that there are more than 70 castles in Luxembourg that have survived since the Middle Ages? What if we celebrated our wedding in one of them?

 

Kerstin looked quite surprised when she realized that I was not joking. We waited 13 years for same-sex marriage to be legalized in our country. It was time to have an exceptional wedding… and turn it in a true fairytale.

 

A couple of weeks later, we started our castle/wedding venue hunting in Luxembourg. And when our friends and family attended our wedding, we made them visit some more castles on the day after our marriage ceremony.

 

Exploring castles in Luxembourg was in the end… a quite personal affair! Here are our 10 favorites:

 

10. The Château de Clervaux

 

The first castle that popped in my mind was the whitewashed fairytale castle in Clervaux, located in Northern Luxembourg. I couldn’t remember when was the last time I had seen it, but I was probably a kid back then. Every time we drove down into the village of Clervaux, it caught me by surprise from afar. And it still did when Kerstin and I visited.

 

 

Dating back to the 12th century, the Clervaux castle is now divided into three different museums. One is dedicated to the Battle of Ardennes (World War II), another displays models of Luxembourgish castles, and the third one hosts the famous permanent exhibition “The Family of Man”, curated by Edward Steichen, when he was the director of the Museum of Modern Art in New York (MOMA).

 

Obviously there was no way to hold our wedding banquet in this castle. So we added it to the after-wedding-castle-hopping excursion with our guests. After all, what could be greater for the occasion than visiting an outstanding photography exhibit that focuses on peace and human brotherhood, and means to bond people and cultures around the world?

 

9. The Château de Bourglinster

 

 

Dating back to the 11th century, the Bourglinster Castle now houses one of the best restaurants in Luxembourg, and several banqueting halls for business and cultural events. Perfect for a wedding celebration, right? Unfortunately, the Bourglinster Castle was already booked on the date of our wedding!

 

8. The Château de Vianden

 

Also located in Northern Luxembourg, the Castle of Vianden is definitely the most famous castle in Luxembourg. While its origin dates back to the 10th century, most parts of this castle have been built, rebuilt and restored many times since the 11th century. Almost the whole castle can be visited throughout the year. So it was not possible to hold a private ceremony at its grounds.

 

 

But during the castle-hopping excursion with our guests the day after our wedding, we experienced an unforgettable moment in the Vianden Castle. When we arrived in the Knights Hall, one of our friends suddenly started singing an aria from the Marriage of Figaro opera as a surprise wedding present. That moment was so surreal and magical that we all listened in awe!

 

7. The Château de Meysembourg

 

The Meysembourg Castle is located about 2 km from Larochette in the middle of a thick forest. Since it’s privately owned, there was no way to visit it other than during special events, such as the annual National Heritage Days (Journées du Patrimoine). Definitely not suitable to be a wedding venue!

 

 

However, even if we couldn’t visit its interiors, it was worth to marvel at its beautiful Neo-Renaissance style façades. We crossed the wooden bridge spanning over a mysterious pond, and enjoyed the dappled shadows under the dense canopy.

 

6. The Château de Schoenfels

 

Located in the Valley of the Seven Castles in Central Luxembourg, the Schoenfels Castle dates back to the 12th century. It’s currently being restored and is not open to the public. But since I drive by every day on my way to work and back, we once decided to stop there nevertheless.

We saw a couple of men working inside the castle, and expected them to send us away when we asked if we could visit. But after a friendly chitchat, they invited us in and let us explore the castle on our own. We climbed up the staircase to as high as we could – until the stairs ended abruptly in ruins! A unique experience, even if the place is not appropriate to be used as a wedding venue.

 

5. The Old Castle of Beaufort

 

Protected by a moat, the medieval fortress in Beaufort was built between 1150 and 1650. From mid-18th century onwards, it was so neglected that it soon crumbled in ruins. And at the beginning of the 19th century, it was even used as stone quarry!

 

 

I know, I know… not a wedding venue either. But we stopped there anyway, to re-explore the subterranean dungeon for old time’s sake. When Kerstin was a kid, she spent a lot of time in this old castle with her godmother. It was definitely in Beaufort where her love for old stones and castles started.

 

4. The Château d’Useldange

 

The Useldange Castle was not on the list of our potential wedding venues. In fact, parts of this castle now accommodate the offices of the municipal administration, and are thus open to visitors throughout the year.

 

Perched on a hill overlooking the River Attert, the Useldange Castle appears to date from the 12th century. However, it fell in total ruin in the 17th century. And it was only restored in the early 20th century, when the ruins were purchased by a native from Useldange, who returned to Luxembourg after emigrating to the USA at age 18.

 

 

We didn’t add this castle to the after-wedding excursion with our guests, but we later returned twice to explore it in depth. The best time to visit the Useldange Castle is definitely during the Medieval Festival in June. We climbed the 25 meter-tall central tower, which has been used as an echo chamber by generations of musicians in Useldange, who perfected their play by the reverberating sound. We were dazzled by the panoramic view on the top of the tower.

 

3. The Grand Château d’Ansembourg

 

When our wedding photographer asked us to pick a place for our engagement photos, we didn’t hesitate long before choosing the New Castle of Ansembourg.

 

 

Built in the 17th century, this castle is now owned by Sukyo Mahikari, a Japanese religious cult, who has undertaken substantial renovation works with the assistance of the State of Luxembourg. While the interior can only be visited during special events, the castle’s enchanting gardens with a labyrinth, several fountains and sculptures are open every day and can be visited for free.

 

Read our story to discover more about this castle’s idyllic gardens.

 

2. The Château d’Urspelt

 

Dating back to the 18th century, the Urspelt Castle in Northern Luxembourg is now a charmingly restored luxury hotel. We discovered it when we were looking for a venue to celebrate our wedding. The castle was covered with snow when we first spotted it from afar. Upon our arrival, we were welcomed in an elegant salon with chic furniture and an open fireplace. We felt so comfortable that we decided on the spot that this was THE perfect place to celebrate our marriage ceremony!

 

 

Our wedding took place on a scorching hot summer day, so we couldn’t take advantage of the cozy interior with fireplace. But the beautiful interior courtyard, the sumptuous gala room, and our romantic wedding suite with its little crenelated towers turned our special day into a true fairytale wedding.

 

1. The Château de Larochette

 

Our absolute favorite castle in Luxembourg is the Larochette Castle. The little town of Larochette – literally “the little rock”, also called “Fiels” in Luxembourgish – lies in the Mullerthal Region, which is famous for its impressive rock formations. Every year, thousands of hikers and bikers come to spend their vacations in the nearby camping grounds, and to explore the castle ruins dating back to the 11th century.

 

 

If you have been following us on social media, you might have noticed that we regularly post photos of the Larochette Castle with the hashtag #homesweethome. Well, that’s because we live here! Not in the castle of course, but in the valley of this little town, where we get to see the main building of the castle, called the Maison de Créhange, from our balcony.

 

For our engagement photo session, we also hiked up there with our photographer. Now, whenever we go out for a walk, we make a little detour up to the promontory to capture the panoramic views of Larochette. And every time we end up entirely absorbed in the bliss of the present moment, or “the bliss of altitude”, as Gustave Eiffel once coined this vibrant feeling of freedom at the top!

 

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Our 10 favorite castles in Luxembourg © Travelwithmk.com

 

Follow Mei:

Traveler - Storyteller

Mei is a 30-something Archaeologist, born and raised in Luxembourg. Besides traveling, she loves eating sushi and stinky cheese (although not at the same time), as well as listening to Kerstin's funny stories while driving on long road trips. She's afraid of heights, but adores panoramic views. Her favorite places are those she chose to live in: Paris, Greece, San Francisco.

41 Responses

  1. HoneyTrek
    | Reply

    What a unique and awesome post. Had no idea Luxembourg has so many castles. And if I had to pick my favorite it would probably be The Château de Bourglinster, totally perfect and warm and welcoming!

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Great pick! You’ll love dining in the Château de Bourglinster! 🙂 But be sure to make a reservation several weeks in advance.

  2. Who is Ferna?
    | Reply

    Your choice of wedding venue of the castle Number 2 The Château d’Urspelt is my personal choice as well! Such an elegant and cozy one. Love the structure!

    Congratulations to you both for an amazing wedding!

    And, I had so much fun reading the castles while you hop on looking for your venue too.

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Thank a lot Ferna! If you ever visit Luxembourg, make sure to go to the Château d’Urspelt! They also offer spa treatments in this hotel!

  3. Astrid Vinje
    | Reply

    We love visiting castles when we travel! The Chateau de Vianden looks beautiful! Did you get to tour the castle?

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Yes, sure we toured the Vianden Castle together with our wedding guests the day after our wedding. But we’d already visited this castle many times before, and in fact almost every time we have friends or family coming from abroad. It’s just 15 minutes from where we live… 😉

  4. Kate
    | Reply

    Château de Vianden looks absolutely epic with all those turrets! And Larochette looks like it’s straight out of Game of Thrones. I love that you had to come up with your 10 favorite because there are so many to choose from. So awesome!

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Haha, we never thought about the similarities of the Larochette castle and the one in the Game of Thrones!

  5. Indrani
    | Reply

    What a good collection of castles in Luxembourg! I remember seeing just one. Perfect location for wedding and pre-wedding shoots.

  6. Wendy
    | Reply

    It’s so cool to see so many castles! And you live in a castle town too! I love visiting castles in Europe. Thanks for the tour.

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      You’re welcome Wendy! But you have to visit Luxembourg someday and tour the castles in real. You’ll love it! 🙂 PS: let us know when you plan to come, so we can send you some tips about Luxembourg!

  7. carolcolborn
    | Reply

    I can relate! Urspelt Castle is such a charmer. My youngest daughter held her wedding at the Guthrie Castle near Edinburgh in Scotland with a tour of the Highlands the day after. You guys are all so romantic!

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      We just googled Guthrie Castle in Edinburgh, and added it to our bucket list! 🙂

  8. Seeing fairy tale castles is a way to transport yourself to another time. My pick would be the Château d’Urspelt for its grand design.

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Come to Luxembourg and stay a night in the Château d’Urpselt, Christina! You’ll love it! 🙂

  9. I did not know that there are more than 70 castles in Luxembourg. What a daunting task to find just the right one for your wedding. The Castle of Vianden looks like a romantic spot to me. But too bad you couldn’t hold a wedding there. The private aria there must have been so special. But the Chateau d’Urpselt also looks like the perfect spot for you have had your wedding. What a great way to plan something special.

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Oh yes, that aria sung inside the Vianden Castle was a wonderful surprise! If you ever visit Luxembourg, make sure to spend a night in the Urpselt Castle hotel, it’s really lovely!

  10. Shreya Saha
    | Reply

    That’s a lovely collection of castles you have shown in Luxembourg. I really like the white washed castle – the Clervaux Castle. I also like the d’Urspelt castle, but my favorite would be the Vianden Castle. All of them look really amazing.

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Vianden Castle is the most famous one, and although heavily rebuilt and remodeled, it’s quite beautiful. You should definitely visit Luxembourg someday!

  11. Nathan
    | Reply

    These castles look stunning and never fail to amaze me with their magnificent architectural facades. Their ruggedness just reminds us of the times they have endured and gone through from historic ages till this era. Great! 🙂

  12. Louise
    | Reply

    Wow – I’ve never thought of Luxembourg to be a very large country so it’s hard for me to believe there are over 70 castles! These 10 all look so beautiful! I am so envious that you got married in one of the castles – what a perfect fairytale wedding. 🙂

  13. Jennifer
    | Reply

    So many castles, so little time. It is hard to image a country as small as Luxembourg has so many castles that you could create a top 10 list. I love the look of Château de Vianden. I would love to live there (or spend the night one day).

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      And the shocking news is that there were even more than 70 castles in Luxembourg! But many were destroyed during the Thirty Years’ War (and also after). Vianden is a cute little town and it’s totally worth to spend a day or two there to enjoy the view of the castle from one of the several hotels along river Our.

  14. Alli Blair
    | Reply

    These castles look so lovely, wow. My husband’s grandma is from Luxembourg and speaks the language! I met her for the first time at our wedding. But I’ve been thinking about Luxembourg ever since and how awesome it would be to travel there. These castles give me even more reason! 🙂

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Then you should definitely come to Luxembourg to visit your husband’s grandma, and all these castles! 🙂 And when you’re here, ask her to cook some real Luxembourgish food, such as Kniddelen or Bouneschlupp. 😉

  15. I’d expected a nice medieval castle or two in Luxembourg but surprised to find so many of them! The country looks tiny in the map but it surely has a lot to explore.
    Some of them remind me of various films, comicbooks, and works of literature, but I guess these are the originals that inspired them.

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Yes, many people go castle-hopping in Germany or France, but rarely think about coming to Luxembourg. On my way to work, I actually drive by 3 castles every day! Crazy isn’t it? 🙂

  16. Jolina S
    | Reply

    70 castles from the Middle Ages– wow, I’d be tempted to visit almost all of them! But thanks for whittling down the list to the top 10. So cool that you guys chose to have your wedding in a castle! Being that you’re both travelers, it must have been very fun planning it from start to finish. Congrats and best wishes to you both! <3

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Jolina, you guys should visit Luxembourg and take a kiss-photo in front of each of the castles here! Let us know when you come, we would love to shoot those photos for you, it’d be so fun! haha… And yes, planning our wedding was really awesome! We got to explore so much of Luxembourg and the Greater Region while looking for wedding dresses, caterers, venues and photographers. 🙂

  17. Lauren
    | Reply

    I had no idea there were so many castles there! What an exciting idea to get married at a castle. I love it! So romantic. Congrats on your wedding!! 🙂

  18. Suruchi
    | Reply

    70 castles just in Luxembourg. That is a huge number. Wedding at one of these castles would be just like a dream. They all are so historic and beautiful. But best is you guys are married now. Congratulations

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Thanks Suruchi! To be honest, even now after two years we sometimes wonder if our wedding ceremony happened for real, or if it was just a beautiful dream! haha…

  19. Sam Sparrow
    | Reply

    This is so well timed as I am planning a Luxembourg trip, purely because I’d heard such wonderful things about the castles! Top of my list is definitely is definitely The Château de Vianden – I know it is the most famous but I think it is truly beautiful and looks a little how I think Hogwarts would look!

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Don’t worry Sam, even if it’s super famous and a bit touristy, the Vianden Castle is still worth visiting! While you’re there, go check out Victor Hugo’s house. And if you have time, you should come to Larochette too, since it’s only a 15 minutes’ drive from Vianden! Feel free to contact us if you need more info and tips about Luxembourg! 🙂

  20. Anne
    | Reply

    This really brings memories back for me. I visited Vianden when I was a teenage au-pairing in Belgium. It is stunning but so are all the other castles too.

  21. Nisha
    | Reply

    Lovely collection of castles! A wedding at the backdrop of one would indeed be a memorable one. Reminds me of my trip to Luxembourg city and the only castle I visited was close to the station but I dont remember the name. I guess a drive around the country is needed.

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      You probably visited the Grand Ducal Palace or the Former Castle of the Counts in Luxembourg City, Nisha! 🙂 But to get to know the real Luxembourg, you need to leave the capital. If you don’t have a car, you can take a bus or a train. It’s actually pretty easy to get to most of these castles with public transportation.

  22. Marvi
    | Reply

    Aww… A fairytale wedding indeed! I love how you made your wedding venue hunting extremely fun! Those are just gorgeous castles indeed.. Oh and btw.. Congratulations! <3

    • Mei and Kerstin
      | Reply

      Thank you Marvi! We’re celebrating our 30 months anniversary! ☺️ This story sat in my mind for some time, so I thought it was the perfect moment to write and share it now.

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