Tour around Bayreuth

Castle and park Fantaisie

"Fantasie" was the given name by Elisabeth Frederike Sophie (1732 - 1780) to her summer residence, five kilometres west of Bayreuth. Here the Bayreuth princess who became the Duchess of Wurtemberg on her marriage created a refuge that reflected her own personal tastes. She bagan extending the palace for use as a summer residence and by the end of 1763 had already started on the interior. The most magnificent of the rooms was the marquetry cabinet completed by Spindler brothers in 1765, one of the finest examples of the Bayreuth rococo style. After comprehensive restoration of the palace under the direction of the Bayreuth authority from 1994 - 1998, the Fantaisie Garden Museum was opened in summer 2000.


Kulmbach is well-known not only for his breweries - with appr. 27.000 inhabitans is Kulmbach as well well-known for his Castle Plassenburg. The Schöne Hof (Beautiful Courtyard), an arcaded courtyard richly decorated with relief work, is one of the finest examples of German Renaissance art.

You will find in Kulmbach the Bavarian brewery - and bakery museum. The city is located 20 km north-west of Bayreuth. On the peripherie of Kulmbach accrues out of the red and white river Main the river Main.


Felsengarten Sanspareil - a rock garden

writing about the Sanspareil Rock Garden in a letter to her brother, Frederik the great, Margravine Wilhelmine declared that "nature herself was the architect". And it was true that the garden begun in 1744 was dominated by the bizarre natural rock formations in the beech grove of Sanspareil. In the time of the margraves, individual rocks and caves were named after the location of events in the French novel "Les Aventures de telemaque".

Near Sanspareil Rock Garden the medieval Zwernitz Castle can be visited.


Burg Rabenstein

The Castle Rabenstein and the cave named Sophienhöhle in Franconian Switzerland: the oldest parts of the castle date from the last quarter of the 12th century and served as seat of the noble family of Waischenfeld. At the beginning of the 13th century the outer bailey was enlarged. During the next couple of centuries the castle changed ownership several times. In the year of 1450 the castle was destroyed during the First Margrave War and was rebuilt in 1489. 1557 the castle belonged to the raising family of "Rabenstein" (Ravenstone) who therewith reclaimed their ancestral seat. Daniel of Ravenstone rebuilt the castle in 1570 adn finally joined the bailey and the main building of the castle.

In the 30 Years War the castle was again completely destroyed by imperial troups, because the owners sided with the protestant wing. After this last devastation only minor adjoining buildings were reconstructed. 1742 the family of Ravenstone died out and the castle passed into the hands of the Barons of Schönborn-Wiesentheid who reconstructed the castle 1829/30 prompted by the visit of the Bavarian king Ludwig I.

Adjacent to the castle the cave Sophienhöhle is located. During thousands of years gigantic stalagmites and stalagtites have formed which play in colours of ocre, red and brown. The cave also harbours the complete skelleton of a cave bear.


Pottenstein Castle Museum

Eldest castle in the "Fraenkische Schweiz” area!

Pottenstein castle probably was a foundation of the 10th century to protect the country, which belongs to the Margrave of Schweinfurt, as part of the ancient Franconian empire. The castle was used as residence of Count Botho of Carinthia (1027/28-1104), who was a member of the family of the Aribones, after his marriage with margraves daughter Judith. Since the year 1070 Botho called himself Poto Comes der Potensteine.