01 October 2010

Castle Hunting: Vianden Castle

I had a lot of trouble taking pictures of this place because it was so darn misty while we were in Vianden. Rebecca has already illustrated how difficult it was to see the castle from afar, and I found myself almost unable to focus on it from any great distance. This picture and the one below are the clearest shots I was able to get during the day.
As you can see, it is quite high up above the main part of the town - although there is a road that winds its way up towards it, and there are some buildings that are closer than the ones in this picture.
This was my castle hunting food: local "pate aux noix" procured from the butcher shop. The woman who sold it to me said that it was made with walnuts, but the nuts in it tasted a lot more like chestnuts. It was good on bread, by itself - kind of sweet. I liked the crunch.
The castle was restored after the Grand Duke gifted it to the country thirty years ago - it had been stripped of a great deal of its walls and ceilings by a scrap-merchant who bought the place from the Dutch king (who owned it, I guess, at the time) in 1820. It has been very well restored, judging from the pictures we saw. There were a lot of rooms like this, though - pretty big and empty.
This is the well. It wasn't really that deep, but looking down into it gave me the heebie-jeebies.
This is the view from one of the top rooms, out over the town and the surrounding hills. The views were amazing, but unfortunately most of the windows had faux-old glass in the panes, so it was difficult to see out.
Last night it was clear enough to take this picture from our hotel window, which doesn't show a whole lot. It's pretty evident that they waste a huge amount of energy lighting it up like this. It's not as though this is a big town, with a lot of people to look up at the castle at night.

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