A trip to Liechtenstein truly-commences, only after, you have spotted the hilltop Vaduz Castle from a far distance. Located 120 meters above ground level, Vaduz Castle is both the capital’s symbol as well, the official residence of the Prince. Separated by a bouquet of lush fields, this Castle can only be admired from the pasture as the royal family still lives here. So, no you can’t visit the fortress from inside! During our routine-meandering, we learnt that the castle was built far earlier, than the twelfth century. In 1287, new living quarters were added to the castle which means its original construction date could be from earlier centuries.
Situated along the Rhine River, the small town of Vaduz received its name after the castle and is inhabited only, by a population of 5000 residents. They say, in the 12th-century manuscripts Vaduz is mentioned as Faduzes. The next mention is that of the Swabian War in the 13th-century manuscripts which foretell a past where Vaduz castle was made redundant by the Swiss army and the entire town, was wrecked down. The ownership of the Vaduz Castle, however, has a beautiful history! In the early 17th-century, the Prince of Liechtenstein sought a seat in the Imperial Reichstag. Although then the family didn’t hold own a piece of land under the Imperial throne which forbade them from the acquisition contest. Thereafter a yearning to gain a seat in the Imperial government led the Prince’s family to acquire lands in Vaduz.
Later in 1712, the family arranged the possession of the countship of Vaduz however still fell prey to the existing political status. According to this status, both Vaduz and Schellenberg required no feudal lord different than the Emperor. In 1719, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI commanded Vaduz and Schellenberg to be united and amplified to the dignity of a principality with the name Liechtenstein. Which, is when Liechtenstein became the sovereign member of the Roman Empire.
After 120 years of possession when the royal family finally moved into the castle, they decided to use the West Wing as the official residence until 1732. Later the fortress tumbled down in despair and was only renovated and rebuilt in the early 19th-century by Prince Franz Josef II. By mid-19th-century, Vaduz Castle was rebuilt and made fit for living. After which, the Royals moved in to use it as their official residence. Ever since then, Vaduz Castle is the official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein. Besides this castle also gave Vaduz, its name! Even though the castle is not open to the public as the royals live here, stories depicting, its historic-construction are popular amidst locals.
They will tell you that the Eastern side of the castle is the oldest. Sporting 13-feet thick walls, the towering barriers surround both the courtyards as well as, the chapel of Saint Anna. The western side is said to have been expanded, in the sixteenth century. So if you ever get a chance to visit Liechiestan, you know where to begin your trip. While you are here, do take time out to discover Vaduz in the red colour city train which offers the best city tour. Also, do read our article on 6-best things to do in Liechiestan.