The main castle, perched on a steep rocky spur, has an imposing ring wall, which like the main gate and so-called Palas (part of the New Palace) dates from the 13th century. Only the basement known as the crypt beneath the originally free-standing chapel has remained from what was probably the previous building on this site. In front of the main castle is a spacious bailey, which was initially where the Burgmannen lived and in the Renaissance period became a garden.
In the main castle, the ring wall from the High Middle Ages surrounds the Old and New Palaces, which are connected by the chapel wing. The section of the so-called New Palace adjoining the chapel is the oldest part of the castle and dates from around 1250. In about 1600 the New Palace was considerably extended.
The Old Palace was built in the 15th century under Elector Friedrich I. The Oak Pillar Hall and Oriel Hall, the representative rooms on the second upper floor, were probably built after 1473 under Albrecht Achilles like the former half-timbered princes’ floor above them.
Shortly before the end of the war, on 17.4.1945, the castle went up in flames. The firestorm raged for days and the main castle lost its roofs and ceilings. For decades the ruin remained open to the sky and increasingly deteriorated.
Over the past few decades the Bavarian Palace Department has secured the rock on which the castle stands and the building substance and rebuilt large sections of the complex (to some extent employing visibly modern materials and ideas). In 2016 the work on the interior of the Old Palace was completed.
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