Colditz Castle

An iconic structure that stands in the town of Colditz near Leipzig, Germany, is not your typical fairy-tale castle. Famous for being an escape-proof World War II POW camp, its history is tinged with both grim realities and daring adventures. Read more

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Visit Colditz Castle in 2024

Colditz Castle originally dates back to the 11th century and has served many purposes over its long history—from a royal residence to a hunting lodge and even a mental institution. However, it gained worldwide notoriety during World War II when it was turned into a high-security prisoner-of-war camp for captured officers who had attempted multiple escapes from other camps. The castle's towering walls and cliff-side location were believed to make escape impossible.
Intriguingly, the POWs housed here were exceptionally creative in their escape attempts, using tunnels, disguises, and even a makeshift glider that was built in a hidden attic. The castle has become legendary for the countless escape stories, some successful, that unfolded within its walls. Today, Colditz Castle is a museum open to the public where you can explore its history, including its darker periods, through informative displays and exhibits.

51.1310118, 12.8077335 Open in Google Maps

The most famous sights
What to do in Colditz Castle

The Escape Museum

Dive into the thrilling escape attempts by prisoners during World War II through various exhibits and artifacts.

The Chapel

Discover the church where POWs secretly constructed their escape tunnels.

Observation Towers

Enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding landscape from these vantage points.

The Castle Courtyard

A spacious area where many historical events and activities took place, offering insight into daily life in different eras.

Guided Tours

Led by experts, these tours provide in-depth information on the castle's multifaceted history.

Castle Gardens

Stroll through the beautifully manicured gardens that were once a luxury for the castle’s aristocratic residents.

Secret Passageways

Learn about hidden corridors and rooms that were instrumental in escape attempts.

The Glider Story Exhibit

See a replica of the makeshift glider constructed by POWs as part of their escape plans.

Colditz Town

Explore the quaint town surrounding the castle, rich in history and local culture.

Nearby Hiking Trails

Embark on scenic walks in the surrounding area, enjoying the natural beauty and peace.

What else to visit
In and around Colditz Castle

Kriebstein Castle (17.62 km)

A captivating fortress perched on a rock overlooking the Zschopau River in Saxony, Germany. With its picturesque setting and well-preserved medieval architecture, the castle transports visitors to a world of knights and fairytale-like beauty.

Leipzig (38.14 km)

Often referred to as the "City of Heroes", Leipzig is a great combination of rich history and modern culture. With its impressive monuments, dynamic music scene and vibrant artistic communities, Leipzig is a magnet for visitors from all over the

Klaffenbach (40.65 km)

Nestled within the scenic landscapes of Saxony, Klaffenbach is a delightful haven of historical architecture and natural beauty. Just a stone's throw from Chemnitz, this quaint town offers a perfect blend of culture and serenity.

Meissen (46.53 km)

Meissen is often referred to as the "Cradle of Saxony," renowned for its high-quality porcelain, medieval architecture, and lush vineyards. Nestled along the Elbe River, this charming town offers a mix of art, history, and natural beauty.

Moritzburg (61.14 km)

Nestled amidst enchanting forests and tranquil lakes, Moritzburg is a picturesque town in Saxony, Germany. It's most famous for the stunning Moritzburg Castle, a Baroque masterpiece that appears to float on water.

Dresden (65.46 km)

Dresden, the former seat of the Saxon kings, is a city of art and culture. Explore the Baroque architecture, world-famous museums and fascinating history of this German city known as the "Florence on the Elbe".

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