Translated to Castle Hill in English, Schlossberg Freiburg Germany is something you will definitely see on your trip to Freiburg. It’s right behind the Old Town and the forested peak can’t be missed as you are exploring the city.
However, I urge you to do more than just see it a distance. Visit it up close! This area has a long history and it’s an interesting place to wander and explore.
In this guide, I share everything you need to know about Schlossberg so you can both decide if you want to go and understand what to do when you get there.
I include the history of this area, what you can see and do and our experiences exploring Schlossberg hill.
You can also find our full guide to Freiburg im Breisgau here.
Schlossberg Freiburg: History
In 1091, Berthold II of Zähringen built a castle on Schlossberg (giving it its name – Castle Hill) to control the trade routes. This resulted in a settlement growing at the foot of the castle in the Old Town area which became Freiburg.
The castle was then taken over by the successive rulers in Freiburg including the Counts of Freiburg, the Hapsburgs and French occupiers. You can read more about Freiburg’s history here.
Over this time, the castle and fortifications were destroyed many times by fire and fighting and but were always rebuilt due to the strategic important of the position. The citizens of Freiburg themselves breached the castle walls twice and it was taken in many wars.
It was finally destroyed for good in the Austrian War of Succession in 1745 when departing French troops pulled it apart.
Today, there is plenty of evidence of this past on Schlossberg.
Schlossberg Freiburg Review
At 456 metres high right by the Old Town, it is easy to visit Schlossberg. There are more details below about how to get here.
We visited Schlossberg with our three kids aged 6, 10 and 12.
Freiburg Schlossberg Cable Car/Funicular Railway
The Schlossberg Bahn is the most fun way to ascend Schlossberg. You can be at the top in just 3 minutes in these cool little cars.
Up to 25 people can fit in the car and it’s possible to travel in this with a wheelchair, stroller or walker.
The ride starts at the station at Stadtgarten on Leopoldring and takes you up 80 metres to the Dattler Restaurant.
From here, you can easily walk to Kanonenplatz where there are some great views of Freiburg and the Black Forest.
You can also climb to the summit and Schlossberg tower with a 15 minute walk.
There is plenty of parking for this near the station at Parkhaus Karlsbau or you can easily walk here from across the Old Town in Freiburg.
I did think this is a little overpriced for what it is and the walk didn’t look that hard or long. However, there are plenty of walks up the top which are great to conserve your energy for.
Schlossbergturm (Schlossberg Tower)
At the top of Schlossberg is the Schlossbergturm (Schlossberg Tower). There are fantastic 360° views from here across the city including of the Münster, the Rhine Plain and the Black Forest.
There are trails to get here, and the funicular railway above can get you part of the way.
The paths up are quite rocky though. I made the mistake of wearing good walking sandals instead of hiking shoes. It’s only a 15 minute walk from the railway, but you do want good shoes to walk up here.
Note that the only way to see views from the top here is by climbing the tower. Trees block the views otherwise.
The tower is easy to climb compared to the walk up and is definitely worth the effort. It does move a little though so it’s maybe not the best idea for people who hate heights.
It’s a beautiful spot with stunning views.
Dattler – Schlossberg Restaurant Freiburg
If your idea of enjoying a view includes food and a drink then Dattler is the place to head if you are looking for a Schlossberg cafe Freiburg.
The restaurant serves “Baden cuisine inspired by the Mediterranean”. Breakfast (on weekends), lunch and dinner are served and you can pop in any time for a cake and coffee (or take them away).
There is a great terrace and indoor dining as well. If you can make the time, stopping here for lunch or an afternoon treat is a great way to enjoy Freiburg.
You can find more information on their site. You can make a reservation online and there is parking available at the restaurant – although the funicular railway is a more fun way to get here and stops right next door.
With more time, Schlossberg is a great place to go hiking. From the hike up to the Schlossberg Tower to longer trails, there are some great options.
The paths are well maintained, and we found it very enjoyable to walk some of the different paths. Note, some can be quite rocky and you should wear hiking shoes.
There are some maps on information boards, but I personally did not find them detailed enough to be that useful. The paths themselves are lacking directional signage. Google maps was very helpful though.
An easy walk for some great views is to Kanonenplatz. This is a relatively flat path from the top of the Schlossberg bahn to a great viewing point with plenty of seats. Someone was a playing a harp when we went which added to the experience.
There are some information boards along the way to learn more about the history of the area and what you are seeing (they are also in other areas of Schlossberg including by the tower).
The boards are in German but they have a QR code so you can read them in a few other languages like English. I used Google translate on them which worked fine.
From here, we walked up to the tower which worked well.
There are plenty of small remains of the old Schlossberg Castle Germany and fortifications here. In the areas we walked, you did need to know what you were looking for.
The information boards (mentioned above) helped with this and I recommend reading them as you go along so you know what you are seeing and what to look for, as well as learn more history about the area.
Schlossberg Freiburg Location
You won’t be able to miss Schlossberg when you are in Freiburg – it’s behind the Old Town to the east.
You can walk up Schlossberg from a path opposite the Schwabentor or take a ride up on the Schlossberg Bahn (funicular railway).
You can also drive up part of the way near the Dattler Schlossberg Restaurant, and there are some parking areas.
Address: Freiburg Im Breisgau 79098
Schlossberg Freiburg Entry Fee?
The park area and tower are free. The cable car has a fee. Find more details here.
If you are looking for a way to enjoy and see more of Freiburg, definitely add visiting Schlossberg Freiburg to your list. It’s a very enjoyable and scenic way to enjoy this area of Germany, and we had fun visiting here.
It works well for families as there is plenty of outdoor space. There is also a playground by Kanonenplatz and we enjoyed a picnic lunch here. Us adults enjoyed the views; our younger kids enjoyed the playground.
Whatever your age, there is plenty to enjoy here.
Looking for more? You can also find our full guide to Freiburg here, accommodation options in Freiburg here and all our guides to travelling southern Germany here.