The Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg (also known as Haut-Kœnigsbourg), is an incredibly restored medieval castle located on a mountaintop outside of Selestat, in the department of Alsace, France.
Dating back nearly 900 years, the Haut-Koenigsbourg castle had fallen into disrepair, until it was rebuilt in the early 1900’s. Today, the medieval castle is so well restored and offers such incredible views of the Alsace plain, that it is a major tourist site. The incredible popularity of Haut-Koenigsbourg makes it difficult to visit on your own as the parking lot is too small and the roads around the restored castle are narrow and congested.
As the Haut-Koenigsbourg castle is located well outside of town, you may be wondering how to get to Haut-Koenigsbourg from Selestat. We got from Selestat to the Haut-Koenigsbourg castle the fun way, by local bus, but there are a variety of ways to get to there which make visiting the mountaintop castle much easier.
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How Far is Haut-Koenigsbourg from Selestat?
The Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg is 9 miles (15 km) from the center of Selestat, so you’ll need some form of transportation to get there. We had an easy time getting there with a local bus, but we saw many frustrated visitors who attempted to drive to Haut-Koenigsbourg from Selestat. In hopes of helping others learn from our experience, here is what you need to know to easily get to Haut-Koenigsbourg from Selestat:
Best Ways to Get to Haut-Koenigsbourg from Selestat
1. Drive from Selestat
If you are visiting Alsace or Selestat with a rental car, you can easily drive from Selestat to Haut-Koenigsbourg. The 25 minute drive to Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg will involve city driving and some highway driving on winding hilly roads.
While you can drive to Haut-Koenigsbourg from Selestat, we only recommend you do so if you arrive very early in the morning. For such a major Alsace attraction, there is shockingly bad parking. There is no true parking lot, just parallel parking along the side of the road which loops around the chateau.
We arrived at the medieval castle shortly after opening on a weekday in August and the official parking area was already near capacity. By the time we left midday, the parking situation at Haut-Koenigsbourg was so bad there was literally road rage.
Cars were parked illegally on both sides of the road, making it too small for two lanes of cars to get through. Buses and recreational vehicles had extreme difficulty trying to drive through this massive parking mess.
If you have the time, your visit to Haut-Koenigsbourg will be so much more relaxed if you leave the car behind and take an alternate way of getting to Haut-Koenigsbourg from Selestat.
2. Take a Tour to the Haut-Koenigsbourg Château
The Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg is one of the top things to do in Alsace. As with all major tourist attractions, there will be a wide variety of organized tours to the Haut-Koenigsbourg château. Taking a tour is one of the easiest ways to get to the Haut-Koenigsbourg. Although Haut-Koenigsbourg is closest to Selestat, most tours to see Haut-Koenigsbourg depart from Strasbourg or Colmar.
3. Taking a Public Bus to Haut-Koenigsbourg from Selestat
We were in Selestat as part of a self-guided family cycle trip in Alsace, so we didn’t have a rental car. Despite the ease of taking an organized tour to Haut-Koenigsbourg, we prefer to mingle with the locals, so we visited the Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg by public transit.
The Selestat to Haut-Koenigsbourg bus route is #500, which leaves from the Selestat train station. Route 500 is the main public bus in Selestat for tourists and also makes stops at La Montagne des Singes (Monkey Mountain) and Eagle Park.
You can buy your bus tickets to Haut-Koenigsbourg directly from the bus driver. At the time of our visit, the cost of taking the bus from Selestat to Haut-Koenigsbourg was only 5 Euros for a return ticket.
The Bus Schedule to Haut-Koenigsbourg
A simple, tourist friendly bus route, there are very few bus stops in-between Selestat and Haut-Koenigsbourg. You can see the bus schedule for the round trip between Haut-Koenigsbourg and Selestat here. On the same bus route, you can also visit the Cigoland amusement park, the Eagle Park and the La Montagne des Singes monkey park.
Haut-Koenigsbourg Opening Hours
The Haut-Koenigsbourg castle hours of operation vary by season, but are typically around 9:30 AM to 6 PM. Be sure to check the Haut-Koenigsbourg website for current opening hours before you visit, especially if you are driving your rental car there.
Where to Stay Near Haut-Koenigsbourg
If you’d prefer to stay outside the busy city of Selestat, getting a vacation rental near the Haut-Koenigsbourg castle is an excellent idea! Staying outside of Selestat, you’ll likely be able to find a rental with much more space than a city hotel, and maybe even a view of the historic castle.
Pass Alsace Discount Card
If you are visiting the Alsace region of France and want to see lots of what the area has to offer, take a peek at the Pass-Alsace discount card. For one low price, this useful tourist pass card provides free entry to over 60 top tourist attractions in Alsace including the Haut-Koenigsbourg castle, the NaturOparC Zoo, the Cigoland amusement park, and much more.
We hope you found these options to get to the Haut-Koenigsbourg castle from Selestat useful. We took the bus to Haut-Koenigsbourg and saved quite a bit of money, but sometimes it just makes sense to treat yourself to an easier option while on your holiday in France. Either way, you’ll love visiting Haut-Koenigsbourg – it’s one of the best things to do in Alsace, France!