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“Hard to believe they imprisoned Richard the Lionheart here for a year!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Kuenringer Castle

Kuenringer Castle
Durnstein, Austria
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Wachau Valley Small-Group Tour and Wine Tasting...
Ranked #1 of 11 things to do in Durnstein
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: Castle Kuernriger (Schloß Kürnriger) is the main attraction of Durnstein (Dürnstein). It is the ruins of the castle in which Richard Leoncoeur, King of England was held prisoner for a year while returning from a Crusade. The ransom was used by the Duke of Babenberg to build the city walls of Vienna. This is a popular historical attraction especially for British people.
British Columbia, Canada
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351 reviews
107 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 163 helpful votes
“Hard to believe they imprisoned Richard the Lionheart here for a year!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2011

Durnstein on the banks of the Danube has the history of Richard the Lionheart's capture as its main claim to fame. Read all about it on the climb up a paved path to the top. The views are worth the effort of making it to the top. Only a half hour for physically fit but careful if your knees have gone already. You can do a circle walk, up the harder side and down more easily. It was a Sunday when we stopped by and we didn't see another soul. Very quaint village in the heart of wine country. Since it was winter none of the tasting rooms were open. Try the local Gruner Veltlineer grown all over Domaine Washau, the local co-operative, a crisp dry white. Its available everywhere, even Waitrose has it! Prost!

Visited December 2011
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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131 reviews from our community

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English first
Level Contributor
147 reviews
54 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
“A long way up”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2011

It's quite a walk getting up to the ruins but the views are breathtaking. The ruins aren't very special but worth looking around and there is no entrance fee.

If you walk up from the town there are two routes, one is steep but with a good footing the other is rocky the signs in the town don't tell you witch is what but the easy one is traveling up from the entrance of the town.

Visited September 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Warren, Massachusetts
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874 reviews
527 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2,381 helpful votes
“Picture Perfect Ruins above the Medieval Town”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2011

A visit to Durnstein is like stepping back in time to the thirteenth or fourteenth century. The town has retained it Medieval character with its winding narrow streets, shops, inns, and restaurants. The abbey church of Pfarrkirche was rebuilt in the Baroque style and its blue tower is an icon of this little town today.

Kuenringer Castle which served as prison for English King Richard the Lionheart in 1192, is in ruins today and helps to make Durnstein such a picturesque town. According to legend, the King's minstrel, a Frenchman named Jean Blondel, found him by using a song known only to the two of them. A ransom of seventy-seven thousand pounds of silver was paid and Richard was released. The name of Jean Blondel lives on in many of Durnstein's most prominent establishments.

Another interesting fact about Durnstein is that it is celebrated in Tolstoy's novel 'War and Peace', the subject of an entire chapter. The site served as battleground for the French, Prussian, and Russian armies during the Napoleonic wars. The winner differs depending on who tells of the battle.

I suggest taking time to visit the little graveyard up a set of stairs at the west side of the town. The site is small...so small that after a period of years, remains are dug up and stored in an ossuary. See accompanying photos.

I highly suggest taking the time to visit this lovely little town. Take time to enjoy the winding streets, the ruins of the castle, and the Danube below. The shops are lovely and the restaurants look inviting. You'll be glad you did.

Visited December 2010
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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