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Eszterháza

The noble Esterházy Castle, which was built in Baroque style, is a real gem of the city of Fertőd. Even nowadays, the Castle is an economic and cultural center of the surrounding subregion. Due to its cultural role, it is usually called the "Hungarian Versailles". The famous Esterházy Dukes were always fond of different arts, therefore they filled the everyday life of the Court with music and vivid cultural life. Franz Joseph Haydn, the Austrian composer and conductor lived and composed here for around two decades. Thanks to his contribution, Eszterháza played an outstanding role in the historical music of the era, the Castle was also the cradle of many operas, opera buffas and symphonies. The park that surrounds the Castle makes the group of buildings even more splendid. It was originally built in Baroque style and resembles the park of the Versailles Castle. With its miraculous trees, flowers and bushes it encompasses the narrow paths, the small chapel and the statues. Originally the building was a hunting lodge, the Castle we can see today is the result of the 1766 reconstruction, which was initiated by Nikolaus (the Magnificent) Esterházy.

History of the Esterházy Castle

The Esterházy Castle is located in the city of Fertőd. The former name of the place is Süttör, and it became a property of the Esterházy family during the 17th century. The original building was a U-shaped hunting lodge with 22 rooms, which was built in 1720 on the basis of Anton Erhard Martinelli's design, initiated by Josef Esterházy. It was the time when the name of the noble Esterházy family and the history of the Castle became joint. In 1762 Nikolaus (the Magnificent) Esterházy had inherited the family property, within a year he began to transform the building into the present Castle. He was the first person, who wrote about the place Eszterháza in one of his letters and that is where the name Esterházy Castle comes from. May 16, 1950 the city was renamed to Fertőd. (more)

What can you see there?

126 rooms, furnished in rococo style can be found in the Baroque Castle. The decorative rooms, the beautiful salon, the well-designed music room, that can be reached on stone steps from the Castle and from the courtyard as well, all are breathtaking and mesmerizing. Among the 126 rooms, there are different salons, parlors, apartments, there is a library and a winter garden. The biggest and most impressive Castle of Hungary hosts many cultural events throughout the year. Visitors can attend permanent and temporary exhibitions. A guided tour is available, where visitors allowed to enter the Maria Theresa room (where the Queen was accommodated in 1733), the Esterházy Gallery and other rooms. It is highly recommended to visit the Wine Museum, located in the ancient cellar of the Castle, where more than 700 work of arts and the biggest complete wine-cask of Burgenland can be seen. Visitors can learn about viniculture and the history of wine-growing. Not only in the past was the Castle a cultural center, even nowadays many concerts, cultural events, and a Baroque festival is organized there every year, and all of them are open for visitors. The Castle still has a key role in music, it hosts the Haydn-seminars, and different concerts and master classes of the region.

Not only the Castle itself is worth to see, but the surrounding garden and additional buildings as well. First of all, there is a breathtaking 300 hectare park, which entwines statues, vases and fountains of the garden from every and each direction. There are many other sights to see in this magical environment, including the well-known wrought-iron entrance gate, which is one of the most beautiful gates of Hungary, the courtyard, a chapel and the Music House, which is Haydn's former home and workplace. Additional members of the group of buildings are the Opera House, the Puppet Theater, the Guard Houses and the former Stable. Nowadays the Castle is not only open for visitors, for people interested in culture and history, but there is an opportunity to reserve it for various events and for weddings.

Opening hours of Esterházy Castle:
 
January 1 - March 22
Friday to Sunday, and on Austrian national holidays 10.00 - 17.00
March 23 - April 30
every day 10.00 - 17.00
May 1 - September 30
every day 10.00 - 18.00
October 1 - November 4
every day 10.00 - 17.00
November 5 - December 31
Friday to Sunday, and on Austrian national holidays 10.00 - 17.00