Saturday, October 10, 2015

Hello, Châteaux: Beaufort Castle

Samschdeg, 10 Oktouber.

Castles are great. But one castle is never enough. So after exploring the town of Larochette and visiting the Buerg Fiels (read more about that adventure), Catherine and I moved on to another adorable small town with its own crumbling castle. Say "moien" to Beaufort!

I had visited Beaufort once before, when my friend Molly and I spent an afternoon in late October exploring the Luxembourgish countryside. Our trip to Beaufort and to Vianden was one of the highlights of my semester abroad and our two days in Luxembourg figured heavily in my decision to apply for a Fulbright grant in the Grand Duchy. So as I talked up the castle during our bus ride, I was mildly concerned that Beaufort might not actually be as great as I remembered.

Luckily, I was wrong. Beaufort is just as striking -- and just as marvelously unrestored and overgrown -- as it was two years ago.



The château médiéval in Beaufort was built in three stages between the twelfth and seventeenth centuries. It fell into disrepair soon thereafter and was left abandoned until the mid-twentieth century. (As is the case for many of Luxembourg's less popular tourist destinations, there is not a ton of easily accessible information about the castle's history -- unless you decide to begin speaking fluent German, in which case this article seems promising?)

To say that Beaufort Castle is not in the best shape would be putting it mildly. Although most of the exterior walls are still standing, it's practically impossible to tell where one room ended and another began. They've attempted to make up for this by adding illustrative plaques throughout the site, each depicting what the castle USED to look like.

If you look carefully at the photo above, you can see the decorative carving of the left side of the fireplace, just around the corner. (It looks like it's floating in mid-air, but remember that what's left is three or four stories worth of rooms -- there would have been a wooden ceiling dividing the ground and first floors!)

Although we weren't entirely sure what we were looking at, we had a blast poking around the ruins.

Another small-ish door? It's too good to be true!

Les Châteaux de Beaufort -- both the medieval castle (which I've visited) and its later Renaissance neighbor (which I have not visited) -- sit just on the edge of the town of Beaufort. To learn more about the town itself, check out their official tourism website. Beaufort is easily accessible by car or by public transportation, although you'll have to walk from the bus stop to the castles. You can find more information about bus and train routes here. It doesn't take long to explore the castles and after you've finished, there is not very much to do in the town of Beaufort. To minimize your transit time, I recommend combining a trip to Beaufort with another town or castle in the Mullerthal Region. Buses run between Beaufort and Echternach (which is then linked directly with Luxembourg City) as well as between Beaufort and Larochette. Because why see one adorable town or crumbling castle when you can see two or three?!

Looking for more information about castles in Luxembourg? You're in the right place! Click to find all the posts in the "Hello, Châteaux" series, which highlights visits to famous (and not-so-famous) castles all over Europe.

1 comment:

  1. Love that they have drawings to show you what it looked like. So cool!