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Reinhardstein Castle

Belgian Castles

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Reinhardstein Castle, locally known as Burg Reinhardstein or Burg Metternich, lies south of the village of Ovifat, in the province of Li├Ęge in the Wallonia region in Belgium.

In 1354 Wenceslas, Duke of Luxembourg, gave Renaud of Waimes permission to build a castle at this location. In 1468 the castle passed to the Van Nassau family through marriage. Through inheritance the castle came into the hands of the De Metternich family in 1550.

Several sources mention that the castle was destroyed in 1677 by the troops of Ludwig XIV. But other sources don’t mention this fact (amongst them the castle’s visitor guide), so I don’t know if this did happen.

During the French Revolution the castle was confiscated. Afterwards it was returned to the De Metternich family.

In the beginning of the 19th century they sold the castle to be pulled down because they choose to reside on their estates in Germany and were afraid that the French might return. The largest part of the castle was pulled down and the abandoned remains were left as a ruin. Later on the ruins also suffered from treasure hunters who tried to find a supposed treasure of gold and silver that was said to be hidden somewhere in the ruin.

In 1969 the castle ruins were ‘rediscovered’ by Jean Overloop, a Belgian professor in diplomacy. He rebuilt the castle to its present appearance after 17th century drawings. Successively he lived in the castle until his death in 1994.

Reinhardstein is situated on a rocky outcrop above the small valley of the Warche stream. It is now private property but can be visited with guided tours. Photographing of the interior is prohibited. A nice castle although it is technically a 20th century building.

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