RS leuchtenburg rosszaehne kaltern kalterersee
RS leuchtenburg rosszaehne kaltern kalterersee

Castelchiaro

On a hill high above Lake Caldaro, the ruin of the legendary Castelchiaro fortress, or Leuchtenburg, rises up to the sky.

Castelchiaro characterises the landscape image of Lake Caldaro and its surroundings. Just as for centuries, it has been enthroned - visible from afar - on a hill in the south of the Monte di Mezzo mountain ridge. The exact construction date of Castelchiaro is not yet determined, often the period between 1200 and 1250 AD is mentioned as period of establishment. According to the South Tyrolean Castle Institute, however, an even earlier building period is possible. Fact is, that around 1250 the Lords of Rottenburg, probably also the constructors, lived in the castle.

At that time Castelchiaro was a fortress built in strategic position. The castle itself consists of a nearly circular high mantle (shield wall) and several residential buildings in the interior, which have only partially been preserved. For centuries the fortress served as the seat of the court. After the year 1610 Castelchiaro was left to decay and was consolidated only in the 20th century. Nowadays it is freely accessible via an iron staircase: inside you can admire remnants of the palas with frescoes of the 15th century.

Such as nearby Castel Varco (Laimburg), also Castelchiaro (Leuchtenburg), located at 576 m a.s.l., belongs to the municipality of Vadena (Pfatten). The two castles were once even connected via an underground tunnel. And how to reach the ruin? Today Castelchiaro is a popular hiking destination, which is accessible from Campi al Lago in a 1-hour walk. Looking above the circular wall, you can enjoy a spectacular view on Lake Caldaro and its surroundings. Unforgettable!

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