The impressive Heinfels Castle is one of the emblems of the eastern Val Pusteria, offering great views of the valley.
Image gallery: Heinfels Castle
On the northern side of the Val Pusteria, above Panzendorf near the village of Sillian, the impressive ruin of Heinfels Castle towers not only over the Val Pusteria, but also over the opposite Kartitsch valley. It can be reached on a small road and several hiking trails.
Heinfels Castle boasts round and rectangular towers, an impressive keep, an outer ward as well as 38 embrasures. Very remarkable are also the so-called protection posts, which prevented the enemies from climbing the walls on ladders.
Heinfels Castle was built in more than just one time period, the oldest part of it dates back to the 13th century. The centre of this medieval castle is formed by the 20 metres high keep and the adjacent hall. The western wing of the castle takes up the biggest part of it and is very well conserved. It hosts a room with stucco ornaments, dating back to the 18th century, the so-called “Rittersaal“.
In the 13th century Heinfels Castle was in the possession of the Lords of Gorizia, who built a military base here. When this noble family died out, in the year 1500 the castle entered into the possession of Maximilian I, who was forced to mortgage it to the Bishop of Bressanone. Soon afterwards, Heinfels Castle entered into the possession of the Lords of Wolkenstein-Trostburg. In the year 1613 a bigger part of it was destroyed by a fire. Consequently, it passed into the hands of the state, who finally sold it to the municipalities of the Court of Heinfels. In 1977 the castle ruin became private property.