Tour - Five Chateaux Route

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The Five Chateaux Route takes in the five castles of Dagsbourg, Wahlenbourg, Weckmund, Hohlandsbourg, and Pflixbourg, all located in close proximity in the forest at the eastern edge of the Vosges mountains, west of Colmar, in the Alsace region of France. With the exception of Hohlandsbourg, which was actually a fortified building site when Alamanicus visited in 2012, the chateaux are all ruins, so maybe this tour might better be described as the Four Piles of Rubble and a Building Site Route. It is, nevertheless, a scenic tour and comes thoroughly recommended, and all four piles of (actually quite well maintained) rubble have some fairly substantial towers poking out the middle of them.

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A French 'chateau' is the equivalent of a German 'schloss' or an English 'stately home', and was primarily a residence of nobility or gentry. In appearence a chateau is more like a grand home or even a palace than a castle, though it could could also be a fortified structure. A chateau that served a defensive function - the French equivalent of what the English language calls a castle (or the German 'burg') such as those found on the Five Chateaux Route - is called a 'chateau fort'.

Sights of the Five Chateaux Route tour

  • The Three Towers
    Not trying to trump Tolkien here, there really are three towers, and some rubble, and it was Orc-free, at least during our visit; the three co-located castles of Dagsbourg, Wahlenbourg, and Weckmund.
  • A Castle with a View
    Pflixbourg translates as "view castle", though has anyone ever been to a castle without a view? Having a view is, after all, a fairly basic function of a castle.
  • Coming a bit later - Hohlandsbourg
    Actually, this one will be following quite a bit later. The castle is closed for renovations in 2012, so don't be holding your breath now, or if you do, be prepared to hold it until after April 2013, when the castle is next open to visitors.
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Alamanicus is wandering his old Alemanni haunts, revisiting the places where once he used to drink, carouse, and beat up the odd Roman legionnaire or two. Things have moved on since his day, and the old Alemanni country now lies across south west Germany, French Alsace, and northern Switzerland. Cut through by the mighty Rhine, it is an area of great beauty, and a lot has happened there since Alamanicus last walked this land.


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Guest Saturday, 26 May 2018

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