The ruins of the Unspunnen Castle dating from the early 13th century are located between Interlaken and Wilderswil in a nice natural natural setting next to a dense forest. The adventure ducksters wanted to check-it out as they heard it would be equally impressive as the Weissenau castle ruin which they loved (and is part of their treasure hunt).
Exploring the Unspunnen Castle Ruin in Interlaken
The fantastic Unspunnen castle ruins tower above the picturesque village of Wilderswil on a rocky hill at the foot of the local Abendberg. The historic site dates back to the early 13th century and was owned by several noble families before finally coming under the authority of the Canton of Berne. In 1533 the impressive building was allowed to fall into disrepair but a big part of it is still intact. The walls of the central round tower, parts of the ring walls and the two residential wings can still be admired and entered.
Let the adventure ducksters show you around in the Unspunnen Castle Ruin.
In the current day and age Unspunnen is still very well known in Switzerland due to its famous herdsmen games on the meadow that were first held in 1805 in front of the ruins. For the first time held in 1805, the games include wrestling, crossbow shooting and tossing of the iconic Unspunnenstein (the Unspunnen stone). The objective of these games was to decrease tensions between town and country folks, following the Act of Mediation of 1803.
The Unspunnen festival is still held every 12 years and drew over 90,000 spectators in 2017 when it was held on the Höhematte in the centre of Interlaken. Currently the festival’s full title is the Swiss Wrestling, National Costume, an Alpine Herdsmen’s Festival and stone throwing the Unspunnen stone. The latter is considered the main event.
The Unspunnen stone
The Unspunnen stone is has a weight of 83.5kg and the goal is to throw it as far as possible. The record is currently held by Markus Maire from the village of Plaffeien, who threw it an epic 3.89m. The stone has become a symbol of the festival and is considered a Swiss cultural treasure hence that this event is the highlight and main attraction of the Unspunnen festival.
Other Castle Ruins in Interlaken
Next to Unspunnen there are a few other ruin remains worth visiting in the Interlaken area. The Weissenau Castle Ruin (which used to be a port tower) which is in a very good state and you can climb on top of, The Rotenfluh castle (of which there are very few remains but which has historical relevance).
Lastly there is the Ringgenberg Castle Church which dominates the northern shore of Lake Brienz. The ruins of the medieval aristocratic castle and the Protestant Baroque church stand side by side and are a great place to visit too.