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Schloss Rafenstein

Fortress · Bolzano and environs · 688 m
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  • Die Burgruine Rafenstein hoch über Bozen
    Die Burgruine Rafenstein hoch über Bozen
    Photo: First Avenue
It is impossible to miss Rafenstein castle, now a ruin, towering high over the Bolzano basin and guarding the entrance to Sarn valley.
The position of Schloss Rafenstein is of strategic importance: from here the way into Sarn valley which formerly ran from the hillside, just below Jenesien, and not along the valley itself, could be controlled. This mighty fortress was probably built in the 12th century by the noblemen of Rafenstein, known through Adalpret von Rafenstein who was Prince Bishop of Trento from 1219 until 1223, succeeding Friedrich von Wangen. By the time of the 13th century, the Rafenstein line had died out, and from 1255 the Wangen family took over as lords of the castle. During the war between Meinhard II of Tyrol and the bishops of Trento Schloss Rafenstein, like all other fortresses owned by the noblemen of Wangen who were loyal to the bishops, was besieged and destroyed. In 1358, Rafenstein caste was rebuilt by Konrad von Schinlein. From 1400, there were several changes of ownership until finally Rafenstein was taken over by the Toggenburg dynasty.

Even though parts of Rafenstein Castle are dilapidated and the mighty towers have all but completely collapsed, the view of the castle walls stretching up over four storeys is still impressive. For many years, Rafenstrein has been closed for safety reasons.
Since May 2014 the ruins Rafenstein is open to the public.


46.525990, 11.357070
46°31'33.6"N 11°21'25.5"E
32T 680773 5155190
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Schloss Rafenstein

39050 Jenesien
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