Visible from near and far, Lorch Monastery chapel nestles on a hilltop, making it a superb vantage point

Lorch Monastery (Kloster Lorch), Wäscherschloss Castle (Burg Wäscherschloss) and Hohenstaufen are key historical locations for the Staufer – representing the birthplace of the dynasty, the official family seat, and its initial burial site.

Lorch Monastery – the final resting place

The buildings of this former Benedictine monastery keep watch over the narrowest point of the Rems Valley. In medieval times, this was the Hofenstaufen family’s place of worship and burial site. Duke Friedrich I of Schwaben commissioned its construction around 1100 and several family members were laid to rest here, including Irene, daughter of a Byzantine emperor and wife of King Philipp of Schwaben. With the advent of the Evangelical church, the monastery was closed in 1556. From 1879, the rise of German national identity prompted increased interest in the Staufer dynasty. As a result, the planned destruction of the site was halted.

One of the original pair of round towers – that once flanked the west part of the building – is still a prominent sight on the horizon. The central nave of the chapel, a Romanesque basilica, houses a further treasure: the Staufer family tomb, which dates back to 1475.

Lorch Monastery

The cloister of Lorch Monastery.