Volcano, nature reserve and alpine panorama
Hohentwiel is a steep volcanic rock, the ideal foundation for a fortress. The first fortress here was erected as early as 914. The largest fortress ruins in Germany, encompassing an area of nine hectares, is now a nature reserve and offers the most beautiful view of Baden-Württemberg: on clear days, you can see from Lake Constance as far as the mountain chain of the Swiss Alps.
A fortress for 1,100 years
The steep mountain peak, situated in the very southern part of Baden-Württemberg, rises almost 700 meters into the sky. Its volcanic past is clearly visible. In the early Middle Ages, a monastery and fortress were erected on the mountain plateau, taking advantage of the strategically unique panoramic view and position on the roof of the volcano. Residence of Swabian Dukes, seat of the Zähringer dynasty, then a Württemberg fortress: Hohentwiel enjoys a checkered history. The Württembergers ultimately expanded the defense system into a powerful state fortress and made use of the mighty and defiant fortification to incarcerate unwanted and critical thinkers there. Hohentwiel was never conquered – the last Commander surrendering the impregnable fortress to Napoleon’s troops at the beginning of the 19th century when they had long since gained control of the whole of the region.
Informative exhibition on the history of the mountain and its fortress
What has withstood the warlike times is impressive enough: walls and bastions still secure the route up to the mountain. When walking along the plateau, you are confronted by mighty witnesses of the past. There are dark passages through casemates and dungeons and steep steps to satisfy adventurous fortress fans. For those who want to learn more about the history of the Hegau volcano, there is an information center situated just below the peak, which includes a detailed large-scale model of the fortress as it stood in the 18th century.
Baden-Württemberg’s most beautiful panoramic mountain
The panorama is absolutely unbeatable: on clear days, the mountain, solitary and unrivaled, unveils a complete and unimpeded view of the chain of the Swiss Alps. Such days with a genuine breathtaking view can be particularly experienced in the autumn and winter. Make no mistake – the ascent from the car park is really rewarding. And those who have experienced this view know: Hohentwiel is the most beautiful panoramic mountain in Baden-Württemberg.
Hohentwiel Fortress Ruins (Festungsruine Hohentwiel)
Auf dem Hohentwiel 2a
Phone: +49(0)77 31.6 91 78