Since it was originally built in 1327, the castle has towered above a rocky reef in the middle of the narrow Bacharach valley near Kaub, where the Rhine has been known for its wild waters since the 15th century. It served as a guard station collecting tolls for Kaub, making a significant income for the various feudal lords. Pfalzgrafenstein Castle is only accessible via the passenger ferry from Kaub.
The castle is closed in very high and very low water conditions on the Rhine.
Admission to the castle including passenger ferry
Individuals €7.00 Adults €6.00 Adults, concessions* €4.00 Children and young people**
Families €7.00 Family ticket 1 (1 adult and children) €14.00 Family ticket 2 (2 adults and children)
Groups (10 or more people) €6.50 Adults, price per person €3.50 Children and young people**, price per person €3.50 School groups, price per person
Combined ‘In the footsteps of Blücher on the Rhine’ ticket This includes admission to Pfalzgrafenstein Castle and the Blücher Museum in Kaub, plus a return trip on the passenger ferry. €9.50 Adults, price per person €5.50 Children and young people**, price per person
* With valid identification: trainees and students under 28, those completing national voluntary civil or military services, pensioners, those with severe disabilities, the unemployed and those receiving welfare benefits, plus holders of the MuseumsCard Pfalz.
** Children of 7 or over, holders of an honorary Rheinland-Pfalz Card, students over 18 and schoolchildren with school ID.
There are parking spaces available between the B42 and the railway embankment. The jetty for the personal ferry to Pfalzgrafenstein Castle and the car ferry to the B9 can be found about 1.5 km after the village name sign.
Regrettably, as it is a historic site, disabled access to Pfalzgrafenstein Castle is not possible. Thank you for your understanding.
No food and drink is available at Pfalzgrafenstein Castle. However, there are a range of refreshments on offer nearby once you return from your visit to the castle.
Blücher Museum Kaub The pretty little town of Kaub sits in a picture-perfect position on the edge of the Rhine and is the ideal place for a gentle stroll and an explore. The Blücher Museum takes you back to the early 19th century, bringing to life Blücher’s spectacular crossing of the Rhine in his battle against Napoleon. Enjoy the Kaub combined ticket!
Kaub youth hostel The modern Rheinsteig youth hostel sits in a historic setting in the centre of the Rhine town of Kaub, right on the Rheinsteig trail with views over the Rhine and the world-famous Pfalzgrafstein castle. Set in the wonderful Upper Middle Rhine Valley UNESCO World Heritage site, the town of Kaub can look back over one thousand years of history. www.diejugendherbergen.de
The castle towers above a rocky reef in the middle of the river running through the narrow Bacharach valley near Kaub, where the Rhine has been known for its wild waters since the 15th century. Like a stone ship, the medieval toll castle rises up from the middle of the Rhine, providing a good source of income for various feudal lords over the centuries. Pfalzgrafenstein Castle reminded French author Victor Hugo of a stone ship at anchor for all eternity. It is worth noting that Pfalzgrafenstein is one of the few castles whose construction date we know precisely: 1327. This also gives us a clue as to the primary function assigned to the castle by the man who had it built, King Ludwig of Bavaria, Count Palatine of Rhine, who wanted a military stronghold for his newly acquired territories in Kaub against his neighbours, the prince-electors of Mainz and Trier. It was also designed to protect the toll office in Kaub where the tolls were levied. Unlike most other castles and palaces along the Rhine, Pfalzgrafenstein was built purely for financial reasons. It always served as a support point for the collection of the tolls. This was very much evident from its position on an island in the middle of the Rhine. News of the annoyance of the monasteries and prelates at having to pay the Palatine of Rhine tolls on their wine ships eventually got back to the Pope. Today, it is difficult to believe that the ships had to stop at 12 toll points along the river between Mainz and Cologne. Although the castle was modernised in 1607 and 1755, large parts of it still date back to the 14th century. Since 2019, visitors have been able to enjoy an interactive, family-friendly exhibition about life on Pfalzgrafenstein.
Burg Pfalzgrafenstein An der Autofähre 56349 Kaub am Rhein Phone +49 (0) 261 6675 4870 Mobile +49 (0) 175 5938645 (also for information on the passenger ferry) ___
Pfalzgrafenstein Castle is a historical site of the Generaldirektion Kulturelles Erbe Rheinland-Pfalz (General Directorate for Cultural Heritage Rhineland‑Palatinate)