In the knights´ footsteps.
Anyone who climbs the romantic Dürnstein castle ruins (accessible all year round) will be rewarded with a fabulous view of the Danube valley and the green Wachau.
The castle was built between 1140-1145. The English King Richard the Lionheart tore down the Austrian flag on the return journey of his crusade and refused to share the war booty with Leopold V. Which is why Leopold V held the English King captive in the Hademars of Kuenring castle in Dürnstein (1192-1193).
The royal prisoner was allowed entertainment by travelling musicians (troubadours). King Richard´s faithful troubadour Blondel travelled from castle to castle until he discovered his king in Dürnstein by singing a song stanza, which the prisoner completed. The legend of troubadour Blondel is traced back to this event. Richard the Lionheart was set free again after a ransom of 150,000 marks of silver was paid.
If you walk amidst the stone walls of the castle ruins at dusk, you almost feel transported back to the exciting Middle Ages.