Top Attractions in Koblenz
What travellers are saying
- A wonderful experience riding over the rhine River and seeing all the natural and man made beauty
You can see the fortress among other things. It is the best and fastest way to reach the summit to check out the fortress
Definitely recommended.Written 1 August 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
- Looks fantastic, the famous junction of the Rhine and Mosel with the gynormous statue of Kaiser Wilhelm 1 on his horse.
Superb in every way and well worth seeing.Written 8 August 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
- From the mid 1200s, levying tolls along along the Rhine River was customary. The Stolzenfels Fort – constructed between 1242 and 1259 – perched high above the Rhine near Koblenz, Germany – collected river tolls until 1412. The French destroyed the 13th century fort in 1689 during the Palatinate War of Succession. After Napoleon’s defeat, Koblenz took possession of the ruins. The city then turned around, giving the site in 1823 to Prussian Crown Prince Friedrich Wilhelm, which at that point, was used as a quarry.
In 1836, Friedrich commissioned a well-known Berlin architect to rebuild and transform the fort into a castle. By 1842, the most important elements of the building are completed, and Friedrich Wilhelm – now king since 1840 – takes possession of the castle.
We are invited to attend the official opening with a grand costume ball along with dignitaries and other elite guests.
Dressed in our finest costume complete with masks, and women adorned in sparkling jewels, our carriage’s horses slowly clip clop up the steep snake-like path cutting through the dense forest greenery and underbrush. We first pass through the curved arch gatehouse where our carriage and horses will later be stabled until reaching the castle grounds.
Suspense rises to a crescendo as we alight from our carriage near the deer paddock and the walled and gated entrance overlooking a small, narrow moat.
We are unable to glimpse the Rhine River from this position – heightening our suspense – and eager for the touted spectacular view we’ve been promised. We must wait a bit longer!
Now inside the outer courtyard, we glimpse gardens and flowers abloom to our right. Before entering the inner courtyard, I want a closer view of the towering spire – one of two – that overlooks the river below. Dusk is not yet descending, and puffy clouds prevent full-on hot late day sunlight. A gentle breeze keeps me comfortable despite my heavy tapestry-laden gown.
As we enter the inner gatehouse, my eyes are drawn upward to the stunning gold painted ceiling mural of the softly arched ceiling. We are now front and center in the inner courtyard. Banquet tables laden with fruit and wine await us. Minstrels entertain us with their music. Flickering candles are everywhere brightening up the open-air space.
To our immediate right is a heavy wood door with stairs leading up to the king’s apartment, which we will hopefully see before the evening’s end. On the opposite side, we are told, are the kitchens, newly constructed now in the 14th century.
Goblets in hand of full-bodied red wine from the nearby Mosel Valley, we linger a bit before making our way through the colonnaded hallway, then down seven or so steps to a grand pergola garden.
It is a feast for the eyes! Taking center stage is a stunning water fountain bubbling over into a second larger cast iron fountain bowl. Colorful flowers surround the fountain while neatly manicured beds of greenery in various geometric shapes jut out in all directions. Overhead is a wooden pergola with grapevines twisting their way around the wood. Beyond the military turreted tower, I glimpse the blue of the Rhine.
We are encouraged – yet none is needed – to wander out to the perimeter garden where the Rhine River is in full view with the hamlet of Stolzenfels somewhere below us, and then visit the Rhine Terrace. Here I spot a life-size statue of an eagle rising high on a pedestal in yet another cast iron fountain dish.
Offering a stunning panoramic view of the valley, the Rhine Terrace is “dedicated entirely to the official representation, legitimization and glorification of the Prussian presence on the Rhine”, we are told, which is expressed in the figure of the eagle.
On the façade of the Great Hall behind us will be the freshly completed fresco (two years from now in 1844) depicting the river bank scene below the medieval castle. The historical setting, which took place in 1400, will show Archbishop Werner of Trier and other high-ranking dignitaries receiving the newly elected king of Prussia and his brother-in-law. “The immediate relation between the painting and the historical setting of the event it describes underlines the noble antecedents of the castle and its inhabitants,” states my handout.
We linger in the spacious Summer Hall with its striking blue and white tile walls and painted ceiling vault, as our wine is replenished and games are beginning. The hall is sparsely furnished as it has been designed as an open hall looking across the fountain and terrace flower beds to the Rhine Valley.
The sun has now set and the moon has risen. Stars blink in the night sky.
It is time to make our way inside to the Large Knights’ Hall for our banquet. This hall will host banquets, concerts and official speeches throughout the coming decades. It features Neo-Gothic double windows and wood-paneled half walls dotted with armor. A stunning stained glass window is a focal point.
After our delicious feast, we move into the smaller, more intimate Smaller Knights’ Hall for games. Its cross-ribbed ceiling has just begun having its frescoes painted. They will be completed in 1847 (remember, it is still 1842), and feature a six-part fresco scene of historically significant events and people. Themes are courage and fidelity, constancy and justice, four saints important to the Rhineland area, and a final wall dedicated to light-hearted Medieval virtues of song and courtly love.
We women carefully lift our skirts as we ascend the narrow staircase up to the music room – in 1846 it would become the royal family dining room – where the exquisite fortepiano is located.
The opposite side of the staircase leads to the queen’s apartments. (No photography was allowed here or in the king’s apartments, so photos are from the brochure.) The queen’s drawing room is one of the castle’s showpieces. The corner niche features warm dark wood paneling and wood carvings with an upholstered corner seat.
Sparing no expense, the exceptional inlay work on the octagonal table and throne-like chair are a testament to their wealth. Her royal bedroom has a four-poster bed and a luxurious Parisian ebony cabinet.
The king’s suite consists of a dressing room and drawing room with a large bay window looking out onto the Rhine. Opening up from the drawing room is his study and audience room. These rooms are sparsely furnished, but each features at least one notable piece, such as his writing cabinet and a classical French desk.
The anteroom follows. The king’s suite ends with his personal guest room with its four-poster Baroque-style bed.
A colorful yellow model scale of the castle is on display. Following our evening at the costume ball, the castle opened to the public. Ever since, Stolzenfels Castle has been regarded as the “epitome of Rhine Romanticism”.
The small castle – compared to others in the area – was expanded in the 1800s when its Gothic Revival features were added, which are obvious from the exterior. It became the summer residence of the king of Prussia. King Friedrich Wilhelm IV died in 1861.
After World War 1, the state took over Stolzenfels Castle and property. Following World War 2 – specifically in 1948 – it was assigned to the State of Rhineland-Palatinate Castle’s Administration.
Frustratedly, the signage to the castle was ridiculously small, and we nearly missed it. As you can see in the photo, a very small name is listed above the street sign. Why it would not be prominently displayed as a huge signboard is beyond me.
As I raise my goblet of Mosel Valley red wine, here’s hoping you enjoyed this evening’s costume ball and tour!Written 7 August 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
- History! Amazing how many generations have passed over this place. It is gigantic. So much fun with the secret passage ways and hiding places. It is a great outing.Written 1 August 2022
- The largest collection of war technology I’ve seen, much better and bigger than, for example, the Saigon war museum. Reserve enough time and don’t go hungry or thirsty - there are no services or cafe.Written 27 January 2020
- Walked around the grounds of the Basilica before going inside. There is so much history associated with the church. The plaques located around the grounds inform you of this history. Inside the church is beautiful as are many other churches in Europe. Worthwhile to visit.Written 18 February 2020
- Not the main attraction of Koblenz but we passed by on our way back from DreiEck.
Nice sculpture with lots of details and a big square with cafe and shops.Written 17 October 2021
- We walked along the river to the town centre and enjoyed walking around the formal gardens which were lovingly cared for. Great views down to the river.Written 9 October 2019
- Being a "part-time" local in the fall during wine harvest, I would not pass up the opportunity to spend a day along the Moselle (Mosel in German). We usually make it a round trip from and back to Koblenz. Take the regional train (RB) early from "Stadtmitte" Koblenz to Mayen (30min), there is space for bikes on the train, then take the converted RR tracks bike path almost level to Münstermaifeld/Hatzenport, stop and picnic on the way, enjoy the spectacular vistas along the way. A short 200 ft ascent in the village where you need to push the bikes to the crest. After the descent into the Mosel valley from Metternich down to Hatzenport, stop for refreshments (it's around 1-2 pm now) then head back to Koblenz along the river. One bike path goes through the vineyards, the other along the federal highway, closer to the river. Both are level, super clean, paved, and easy to ride. Stop and watch the laborious way the grapes are picked (early October). If you run out of steam, you can pick up the train in any of the villages for the return. You're usually back in Koblenz for dinner.Written 8 August 2017
- This cheeky little boy who spits water at people who stand in the wrong place at infrequent intervals serves as a reminder of the French occupation after WWI when lots of children in Koblenz and surrounding villages ended up not having a father married to their mother and were called Jean, from which the 'Schengelsche' developped which these days just means you're a proper Koblenz citizen.Written 2 March 2020
- I think I'd never seen so many old trains, coaches and locomotives as there are on view here in the yard.
This museum can easily be reached on foot from railway station Koblenz Lützel.Written 8 November 2019
- Walking along the promenade you get to this old crane turned into a restaurant. The restaurant was closed but the building itself is very interesting. First of all it show the current height of the water on the day. Then it also shows the height of the water during previous floods. Looking at that you can imagine the effect it had on the area and the city.
Very interesting and worth a stop while you are thereWritten 20 June 2019
- A column which sums up the history of Koblenz in some interesting detailed carving. there is an explanation in english.
In December there is a Christmas market in square.Written 13 December 2019
- Well worth taking a moment to have a little wander around here, if you aren't pressured for time. It's a pretty and well maintained part of town.Written 6 July 2022
- This little square in the pedestrianised old town of Koblenz is an interesting crossing where you can see the houses restored beautifully indicating the original buildings' age and their purposes are recognisable from the highly decorated oriels.Written 2 March 2020
Frequently Asked Questions about Koblenz
- The best outdoor activities in Koblenz according to Tripadvisor travellers are: See all outdoor activities in Koblenz on Tripadvisor