Aichach-Friedberg: the roots of the House of WittelsbachThe House of Wittelsbach first left its mark in the town of Aichach in Bavarian Swabia: the castle that gave the family its name, “Wittilinesbach” in what is now the district of Oberwittelsbach, was first mentioned in 1115. Just 100 years later, however, it was completely destroyed. Today the magnificent Church of the Virgin Mary occupies a prime position on the castle mound. In tribute to the House of Wittelsbach, there is also a neo-Gothic national monument, dedicated in 1834, and a memorial stone.
Just a few minutes away is the moated castle in Unterwittelsbach. This is also known as the “Sisi-Schloss”, as the young Wittelsbacher Empress Elisabeth, nicknamed Sisi, often stayed here with her father, Duke Maximilian.
The Aichach-Friedberg district is also home to Friedberg Castle, which was destroyed and rebuilt several times over the years. This historic building is now largely in the Renaissance style. It dates back to a High Medieval castle complex built by Wittelsbach Duke Ludwig II. Nowadays, the castle houses the municipal Heimatmuseum.
From the original ducal castle to the fairy-tale castles of Ludwig IIIn Landshut in the east of Bavaria, the noble family founded its original castle in 1204: Trausnitz Castle. The former ducal residence is still hugely impressive, with its fortifications, the high Wittelsbach Tower and the Chapel of St. George with its special sculptural decoration on the altar wall.
One of the most famous rulers to emerge from the House of Wittelsbach is without doubt the Bavarian King Ludwig II. In the 19th century, the monarch proved to be a passionate castle builder. In Bavaria you can explore the well-known architectural creations of the Fairy Tale King, especially Neuschwanstein Castle, Herrenchiemsee New Palace and Linderhof Palace.