25 Fairytale Castles Near Cologne, Germany

Updated on October 31, 2023  


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Are you planning a trip to Cologne and interested in exploring the historical castles nearby? 

My comprehensive guide will share essential details about over 20 majestic castles within day-trip distance, including location, journey time and best times to visit. Ready for a royal adventure? Dive into our castle tour!

25 Beautiful Castles Near Cologne

Schloss Dyck (45 min)

Schloss Dyck is one of the closest castle to Cologne, making it a must-visit for travelers in the area. Located in Juchen, Germany, this moated castle offers a glimpse into German history and culture.


The picturesque backdrop of Schloss Dyck, along with its magnificent architecture and historical park, makes it an ideal destination for those interested in exploring medieval castles and immersing themselves in the beauty of nature.

Don't miss the chance to wander through the gardens and parks surrounding Schloss Dyck, as they add an enchanting touch to your visit.

Eltz Castle (1h 34min)

Eltz Castle, a historical fortress nestled between Koblenz and Trier in Germany, is an architectural marvel. It's perched on an oval rock formation amid the serene Eltz Forest, a notable nature reserve.

The castle boasts a unique charm for its unchanged lineage as it remains under the ownership of the same family who built it. 


Its romantic ambiance and stunning landscapes make it one of Germany's prized cultural treasures and a must-visit landmark for every traveler exploring famous castles near Cologne.

Castle Bürresheim (1h 21min)

Castle Bürresheim greets visitors with its stunning medieval architecture, nestled on a rock spur in the quaint Nettetal of Germany's RheinlandPfalz region.

This majestic structure is just a short day trip away from Cologne, making it an ideal destination for any traveler looking to explore historical landmarks.


The local church Sankt Johann holds ownership of Castle Bürresheim. Despite many castles changing with time and technology, this notable castle has maintained its medieval era charm and stands as one of the best-preserved fortresses near Cologne.

Walking through its stone arches and towering turrets, you'll feel like you've taken a step back into history.

Schloss Drachenburg (36 min)

Schloss Drachenburg sits majestically on the Drachenfels mountains, overlooking the picturesque Rhine River. I reached this castle easily by train as it has its own stop in Königswinter.


Not too far away from major cities, it's just 13 km from Bonn and about 53 km from Cologne. Often referred to as a "fairytale castle," its stunning beauty drew me in instantly. The view over the Rhine is breathtaking, clearly making Schloss Drachenburg one of the best photo spots near Cologne.

Hoensbroek Castle (1h 4min)

Hoensbroek Castle is an impressive watercastle located in Hoensbroek, Limburg. It is often referred to as "the most lordly stronghold between Rhine and Meuse". [1] This well-preserved castle showcases stunning medieval architecture and fortified water that surrounds it.


As one of the famous castles near Cologne, Hoensbroek Castle offers travelers a glimpse into the past with its grandeur and historical significance. Whether you are interested in exploring fortresses or admiring heritage sites, this castle is definitely worth a visit during your trip.

Burgau Castle (50 min)

Burgau Castle is one of the famous castles near Cologne in Germany. Located in Düren, near the town forest at the edge of the district Niederau, it offers a glimpse into medieval architecture and German history.


This castle is a must-visit sight for travelers looking to explore historical landmarks and cultural heritage. Situated northwest of Rheinland-Pfalz region, Burgau Castle is an architectural landmark that can be easily reached on a day trip from Cologne.

Soak in the atmosphere, admire its ancient walls, and immerse yourself in the rich history of this impressive castle.

Museum and Forum Schloss Homburg (47 min)

Schloss Homburg is a historical castle nestled in the hills of Nümbrecht, Germany. As one of the famous castles near Cologne, it boasts stunning medieval architecture and a rich history that will captivate any traveler.

The castle's hilltop location offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside, making it a must-visit destination for those seeking both beauty and history.

Just a short distance from Cologne, Schloss Homburg is easily accessible and promises an unforgettable experience steeped in Germany's past.

Schloss Augustusburg (27 min)

Schloss Augustusburg is a must-visit castle near Cologne, Germany. As one of the most important baroque and rococo buildings in the country, it offers travelers a glimpse into the grandeur of German architecture.


Located in Brühl, North Rhine-Westphalia, this palace was originally built as a residence for the prince-archbishops of Cologne. Its stunning architectural style combines elements of Baroque, Rococo, and Classicism.

In fact, Schloß Augustusburg's beauty is so renowned that it has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. When exploring castles near Cologne, be sure to add Schloß Augustusburg to your itinerary for an unforgettable historical experience.

Falkenlust Castle (29 min)

Falkenlust Castle is one of the famous castles near Cologne that you shouldn't miss. It is part of a historical building complex in Brühl, along with Augustusburg Castle.


Built as a hunting lodge for the prince-archbishops of Cologne, this small and luxurious residence offers a glimpse into the past. [2] Nestled in an idyllic garden landscape, Falkenlust Castle provides a serene escape from the bustling city life.

So if you're looking to explore architectural treasures, immerse yourself in history, and enjoy the beauty of nature all at once, Falkenlust Castle should be on your must-visit list when traveling near Cologne.

Schloss Paffendorf (37 min)

Schloss Paffendorf is one of the famous castles near Cologne in Germany. Constructed in the late 19th century, this castle is known for its impressive architecture and is considered one of the most beautiful castles in the area.


As a traveler, visiting Schloss Paffendorf will provide you with a glimpse into the historical and cultural significance of Cologne's castles. Explore its stunning grounds, admire its grandeur, and immerse yourself in the rich history that surrounds this magnificent landmark.

Ehreshoven Castle (32 min)

Ehreshoven Castle, located in the Ehreshoven district near Cologne, is a must-visit for history enthusiasts and those captivated by medieval architecture.

This historical landmark showcases the beauty of fortress architecture with its well-preserved towers and stone walls.


Step inside and explore the castle's interior to see rooms filled with medieval artifacts and furnishings, giving you a glimpse into the past. With its rich cultural heritage and fascinating history, Ehreshoven Castle is definitely worth exploring during your visit to Cologne.

Schloss Bensberg (25 min)

Schloss Bensberg, located in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany, is a former royal residence and hunting lodge.

Today, it is known as the Grand Hotel Schloss Bensberg and is part of the Althoff Hotel Collection.

This luxurious hotel offers grand accommodations and all the amenities you would expect from a top-notch establishment.

With its close proximity to Cologne and Düsseldorf, Schloss Bensberg provides an ideal location for exploring both cities.

Additionally, don't miss the opportunity to dine at Vendôme, the castle's three-Michelin-star restaurant that promises an unforgettable culinary experience.

Burg Satzvey (41 min)

Burg Satzvey is a stunning moated castle located near Cologne, Germany. Its historic charm and architectural beauty make it a popular tourist spot in the region. The castle is not just a sight to behold, but also serves as an event venue for various functions throughout the year.


Situated in a picturesque location, Burg Satzvey is surrounded by a moat that adds to its allure. It's worth mentioning that this enchanting castle is conveniently close to cities like Bonn and Cologne, making it easily accessible for visitors looking to explore more of the region's cultural heritage.

Burg Flamersheim (45 min)

Burg Flamersheim is one of the famous castles near Cologne, Germany. Located in Euskirchen, it offers a delightful experience for castle enthusiasts visiting the region.

With its rich historical significance and stunning architecture, Burg Flamersheim attracts tourists who are fascinated by medieval structures.

The castle also offers breathtaking views of the countryside, making it a favorite spot for photography enthusiasts.

Nearby attractions like Steinbachtalsperre, Beethoven House, and Therme Euskirchen add to its appeal.

Burg Reifferscheid (1h 6min)

Burg Reifferscheid is a historic castle located near the German-Belgian border. Perched at an elevation of 450 meters, this once-mighty fortress now stands in ruins.

Situated in the village of Reifferscheid in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, Burg Reifferscheid is a fascinating cultural heritage site and a must-visit attraction for history enthusiasts.

The architectural remains of the castle offer visitors a glimpse into its rich past and make for an intriguing exploration.

Merode Castle (46 min)

Merode Castle is a must-visit destination located in Kerpen on Erft, near Cologne in Germany. This castle holds great historical significance as it is associated with the prestigious Rhineland family of ministries from the Holy Roman Empire. [3]


Known as the "fairytale castle," Merode Castle will transport you back in time with its remarkably preserved medieval architecture. Inside, you'll discover an impressive collection of artworks, crafts, weapons, and everyday items that span over eight centuries.

Whether you're interested in history or simply want to explore a cultural heritage site, Merode Castle is a perfect choice for a day trip from Cologne. Plus, it's easily accessible so you won't have any trouble getting there!

Burg Blankenheim (55 min)

Burg Blankenheim is a medieval castle located in the village of Blankenheim in the North Rhine-Westphalia region of Germany. Also known as Blankenheim Castle, it is one of the famous castles near Cologne and attracts many visitors.


This historical landmark has a rich history and offers travelers a glimpse into the past. The castle's picturesque location and well-preserved architecture make it an ideal destination for those interested in exploring Germany's fascinating heritage.

As you wander through Burg Blankenheim, you'll be transported back in time and have the opportunity to learn about the captivating stories that surround this enchanting castle.

Burg Stahleck (1h 58min)

Burg Stahleck, also known as Castle Stahleck, is a famous castle located in Bacharach, Germany. This historical fortress offers travelers breathtaking views of the Rhine Valley from its terrace.


Interestingly, Burg Stahleck is not just an attraction to visit but also serves as a hostel for those seeking a unique accommodation experience. Built on the orders of the Archbishop of Cologne, this castle faced destruction in the late 17th century but has since been restored to its former glory.

The architecture of Burg Stahleck is truly remarkable and provides visitors with a glimpse into the rich history of this region.

Schloss Marksburg (1h 25min)

Located above the town of Braubach in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany, Schloss Marksburg is a historical fortress and one of the principal sites of the Rhine Gorge UNESCO World Heritage Site.


As a traveler, you can immerse yourself in medieval history by exploring this stunning castle.

With its visually striking features, including dramatic turrets, spires, and Gothic architecture, Schloss Marksburg offers a captivating glimpse into German history and culture.

Open to the public and offering guided tours, this landmark is definitely worth adding to your list of must-visit castles near Cologne.

Cochem Castle (1h 43min)

Schloss Reichsburg, also known as Cochem Castle, is a magnificent neo-Gothic castle located in Cochem, Germany.

As the largest castle in the Mosel valley, it holds great historical significance and attracts tourists from all over the world. [4]

Its stunning architecture and picturesque location make it a must-visit destination for travelers. Inside the castle, you can explore its rich history through guided tours that take you through its impressive interior.

Don't miss out on this opportunity to immerse yourself in the beauty and historical charm of Schloss Reichsburg.

Schloss Burg (43 min)

Schloss Burg is the largest reconstructed castle in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. [5] It's a magnificent architectural marvel located in a charming village on the Wupper river in Solingen.

This historical gem holds great significance and is a must-visit for castle enthusiasts. As you explore the castle's grand halls and towers, you'll be transported back in time to its rich history.


Schloss Burg is closely associated with other famous castles near Cologne like Eltz Castle, Schloss Drachenburg, and Burg Satzvey. Don't miss out on this opportunity to witness the beauty of this Rhineland treasure firsthand!

Schloss Benrath (36 min)

Schloss Benrath is a famous castle near Cologne in Germany. It was originally built as a moated castle in the 15th century and features well-preserved Renaissance-style architecture.

Visiting this castle is like stepping back in time and experiencing the aristocratic lifestyle during the Renaissance period. The highlight of Schloss Benrath is its stunning gardens, which includes both a French garden and an English landscape garden.

Kurfürstliches Schloss (34 min)

The Kurfürstliches Schloss Bonn is a stunning castle near Cologne that was built in 1697. [] Its Baroque architecture and Gothic features make it a true architectural marvel.

As one of the most beautiful castles in the area, it offers visitors the chance to immerse themselves in its rich history and cultural heritage.

The castle's turrets, spires, and dramatic design will leave you in awe of its beauty. It's definitely worth including on your list of must-visit attractions when exploring castles near Cologne.

Burg Nideggen (54 min)

Burg Nideggen, located in the town of Nideggen, Germany, is a must-visit castle near Cologne. As you explore this historic site, you'll be captivated by its dramatic turrets, spires, and Gothic features.

Owned by the county of Düren and considered a symbol of the town of Nideggen itself, this castle offers a glimpse into the past and serves as a popular tourist attraction.

Soak in the rich history and immerse yourself in the charm of Burg Nideggen during your visit to Cologne's nearby castles.

Schloss Morsbroich (24 min)

Schloss Morsbroich is a visually striking castle near Cologne that will captivate you with its dramatic turrets, spires, and Gothic architectural elements.

As you explore this enchanting castle, you'll be amazed by its beautiful location nestled upon picturesque grounds.

You'll feel like you're stepping into a fairytale as you wander through the castle's halls and admire the stunning views from its windows.

Schloss Morsbroich is truly a hidden gem among the famous castles near Cologne, and it's definitely worth adding to your itinerary if you're visiting the Middle Rhine Valley between Cologne and Mainz.

Tips for Visiting Castles Near Cologne

Transportation options

Transportation options to visit the castles near Cologne are varied and convenient. You can choose to travel by train, bus, boat, or car, depending on your preference and the castle you plan to visit.

For example, Burg Eltz Castle can be accessed by train, bus, and boat from Koblenz. If you prefer a day trip by car, that is also possible. In general, traveling by car is considered the best way to visit these castles as there are highways and well-marked routes available.


However, if you don't have access to a car or prefer public transportation, there are train and bus options available from Cologne as well.

Whether you're exploring historic landmarks or embarking on castle tourism near Cologne, there are various transport alternatives that will make your castle sightseeing adventure accessible and enjoyable.

Admission fees and hours of operation

Visitors can buy tickets at the entrance of Eltz Castle near Cologne. Online ticket purchases are not currently offered for Eltz Castle near Cologne. Admission to Augustusburg and Falkenlust Castles in Brühl near Cologne is free.

The park at Augustusburg and Falkenlust Castles near Cologne is open daily from 8 am until sunset.

Guided tours and audio guides

Guided tours and audio guides are available for travelers visiting the castles near Cologne. These tours offer a detailed exploration of the historical sites, allowing you to learn about their fascinating history and architecture.

You can choose from multilingual guided tours, ensuring that you understand all the information provided. Additionally, audio guides are also provided in multiple languages, giving you the flexibility to explore at your own pace while still receiving informative commentary about each castle.

So whether you prefer a guided tour or self-guided exploration with an audio guide, these options make it easier for visitors to fully appreciate the beauty and significance of the castles near Cologne.

Nearby amenities and attractions

After exploring the fascinating castles near Cologne, you'll find a range of nearby amenities and attractions to enhance your visit. From quaint villages to scenic landscapes, there is something for everyone.

Take a stroll along the picturesque River Rhine or immerse yourself in history at Ehrenbreitstein fortress in Koblenz. If you're eager for more castle adventures, Marksburg is worth a visit with its well-preserved medieval architecture.


For nature lovers, Burg Eltz is surrounded by the enchanting Eltz Forest, perfect for hiking and taking in the beauty of the German countryside. Don't forget to explore charming towns like Bonn and Cochem during your stay as well!

Conclusion: Castles Near Cologne Germany

Discover the enchanting world of castles near Cologne. From the picturesque moated Satzvey Castle to the stunning baroque Bensberg Castle, there are architectural wonders waiting to be explored.

Experience history come alive and immerse yourself in the rich heritage of these remarkable fortresses. Make your trip to Cologne truly unforgettable by venturing beyond its famous cathedral and uncovering these hidden gems near Cologne.

Key Takeaways

  • Eltz Castle, nestled in the Eltz Forest between Koblenz and Trier, is a must - visit architectural marvel near Cologne with a unique charm and stunning landscapes.
  • Schloss Drachenburg, sitting majestically on the Drachenfels mountains, offers breathtaking views over the Rhine River and is easily accessible from Bonn and Cologne.
  • Burg Satzvey, surrounded by a moat and located close to Bonn and Cologne, is a picturesque castle that serves as both a tourist spot and an event venue throughout the year.
  • Merode Castle in Kerpen on Erft is known as the "fairytale castle" with remarkably preserved medieval architecture and an impressive collection of artworks spanning eight centuries.


1. How many castles are there near Cologne?

There are several castles near Cologne, with over 70 castles and fortresses in the region to explore. We listed 25 of them here.

2. Can I visit the castles near Cologne?

Yes, many of the castles near Cologne are open to the public for tours and visits.

3. Are there any famous castles near Cologne?

Yes, some famous castles near Cologne include Schloss Drachenburg, Burg Satzvey, and Schloss Augustusburg.

4. How far away are the castles from Cologne city center?

The distance between the castles and Cologne city center varies depending on which castle you visit, but most are within a short driving or train ride away from the city center. All the castles on this list can be reached in under 2 hours.


1: Hoensbroek Castle, Hoensbroek, Netherlands - SpottingHistory, retrieved from https://www.spottinghistory.com/view/3917/hoensbroek-castle/
2: Hunting Lodge Falkenlust | Schlösser Brühl, retrieved from https://www.schlossbruehl.de/en/hunting-lodge-falkenlust/
3: Merode Castle | Schloss Merode, retrieved from http://schlossmerode.de/?page_id=53&lang=en
4: Reichsburg Cochem/Mosel, retrieved from https://reichsburg-cochem.de/?lang=en
5: Castle Burg & Solingen - Adventurer's Summit, retrieved from https://www.adventurerssummit.de/en/solingen/

About the Author

Stephan Drescher, founder of germanytravel.blog, is a German travel expert and insider, providing trusted tips and advice for a perfect trip to Germany. Born & bred German.