Like many castles in Germany, the trip to Stahleck Castle begins with a 15 minute hike up a hill.
The Stahleck Castle in Bacharach has a fascinating history. It was a fortified castle, built in the 12th century. At one time it was surrounded by a moat. It served as the headquarters for tax collection on the wine trade that passed through the city. The castle was attacked, damaged and rebuilt numerous times before being ultimately destroyed by French cannon in 1689. In 1925 it became a youth hostle and is currently still operating. Hostel operations halted before and during World War II when the castle served many different functions including a hospital and detention/re-education center of sorts for those involved in the resistance movement.