Egeskov Castle – Picturesque Water Castle (History, Travel Tips & Video Tour)

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Egeskov Slot in Denmark, translated as the “Oak Forest Castle” and commonly known as Egeskov Castle, is a stunning representation of a Renaissance water castle. The Renaissance architectural style was very popular in Europe between the 14th and 16th centuries. It is characterized by its geometric, proportional, and symmetrical conformity – closely resembling the ancient Greek and Roman architectural designs. 

The charming Egeskov Castle is purported to be the oldest moated castle in Europe.  accessible only by a drawbridge. The residence was built as a fortified castle by the Danish nobleman Frands Brockenhuus in 1554. Today this beautiful castle is open to the public and boasts several museums, exhibitions, and gardens for tourists to explore!

The Japanese replica was built to encapsulate an aquarium!

Egeskov Castle in Funen, Denmark.
Egeskov Castle in Funen, Denmark.

Frequently Asked Questions

FOR HISTORY | BEAUTIFUL IMAGES | INTERESTING FACTS | TRAVEL TIPS

Early History

In the 1400s, Egeskov Castle was a manor house. A civil war raged in Denmark from 1533 – 1536 CE, which ultimately led to the Protestant Reformation in the country. In order to live safely through the unrest caused during this reformation, many noblemen converted their unfortified homes into veritable strongholds – secure and not easily accessible to would-be threats from the outside. It was during this time that Frands Brockenhuus remodeled Egeskov into a full castle.

Egeskov Castle in the 19th century in Funen, Denmark.
Egeskov Castle in the 19th century in Funen, Denmark. Swedish National Heritage Board, No restrictions, via Wikimedia Commons

The Egeskov Castle Estate was owned by the Bille-Brahe family, the descendants of Frands Brockenhuus, until 1784. From 1882 to date, the estate has belonged to the Counts of Ahlefeldt-Laurvig-Bille. The current owner, Michael Ahlefeldt-Laurvig-Bille, inherited the castle estate in 1994. The castle has been well-maintained over the centuries and is arguably the most unspoiled example of a Renaissance water castle in existence today, with Late Gothic elements added in.

Egeskov Castle's bedroom interior.
Egeskov Castle’s bedroom interior. Egeskov castle flickr photo by hans s shared under a Creative Commons (BY-ND) license

The Layout of Castle Egeskov

Egeskov Castle is made up of two individual houses separated by a thick dividing wall. There are secret stairways and a well inside the walls. It was architecturally designed to allow the inhabitants, in the event of an attack, to vacate one side of the castle and continue to defend their property from the second building. The fact that it is built on an island and surrounded by water made it even more secure as the water added an additional layer of protection for the castle.

Egeskov “Oak Forest” Castle’s access road.
Egeskov “Oak Forest” Castle’s access road.

The castle is encircled by 49 acres of land sectioned into a variety of gardens adorned with statues and fountains. It is a truly magnificent example of a Renaissance garden, with 120 varieties of fuchsias and 4 hedge-mazes among its award-winning beauties.

Current Times

Castle Egeskov opened for world travelers in 1986. Today, Egeskov Castle is a gem and a must-visit for tourists.  

Amongst the many treasures from around the world in the various rooms is the fascinating Titania’s Palace Dollhouse. This exquisite miniature palace, conceived and built in Dublin, Ireland, is displayed in the Rigborg Room of the castle. Enjoy its beautifully crafted furniture, while watching for the fairy queen Tatiana, her consort Oberon, and their six children, named after William Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The scenic view of Egeskov Castle from afar.
The scenic view of Egeskov Castle from afar. Egeskov flickr photo by gri*su shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

The beautiful gardens provide a calming environment and there are a variety of gardens to view. From a peasant’s garden to a garden full of herbs – you name it, you will probably find that garden variety at the castle estate!

The aerial view of Egeskov Castle.
The aerial view of Egeskov Castle. CucombreLibre from New York, NY, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Interesting Egeskov Castle Facts

  • Egeskov Castle has a wide array of museums and collections–from exhibits about the castle and its history to mechanical & grocers exhibits. There is even an outdoor camping museum at Egeskov Castle!
  •  In 1986, the owners at that time – Count Claus and Countess Louisa Ahlefeldt-Laurvig-Bille – granted the request to build a complete replica of Egeskov Castle in Japan.
  • The Japanese replica was built to encapsulate an aquarium!
  •  A huge iron chest from around the 16th century can still be seen in the castle today.
  • A whole forest of oak trees was used to construct and fortify just the base of Oak Forest Castle … or so the legend goes.

Visiting Egeskov Castle – Tips and Tricks

Are you interested in going to see the charming Egeskov Castle after reading about it here? Check out our helpful tips below as you plan your trip!

The view of Egeskov Castle in front of the maze garden.
The view of Egeskov Castle in front of the maze garden. Castillo de Egeskov flickr photo by cesargp shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

How to get to Egeskov Castle?

The cheapest option will cost between $20-30 USD. Take a train at Copenhagen Station and arrive at Odense Station in around 1 hour, from there take the train and arrive at Ringe Station in 23 minutes, followed by a 14 minute bus trip and an 11 minute walk to Egeskov Castle.

Another option is to take a train from Copenhagen to Nyborg Station and take the bus from there to Egeskov, around 2.5 hours travel, with another 11 minute walk to Egeskov Castle. This will cost around $30 USD.

Even though it is surrounded by water, the castle is easily accessible by foot and by car during the opening hours and open dates.

Ticket Prices, Visiting Hours & Travel Tips

From around mid-May to the end-June the castle is open between 11am and 4pm. The castle is open between 10am and 7pm between the end of June and the 9th of August. From the 10th to the 30th of August opening hours are between 11am and 6pm. From the end of August to the 20th of October the castle is open between 11am and 5pm daily.

Ticket prices for adults range from between €27-€31 ($31-$35 USD) and children will be charged between €16-€19 ($18-$22 USD). The higher-priced tickets are allocated during the busier tourist period, between the 20th of June and 30th of August. All ticket prices include entry to the park, exhibitions and the castle. Group tours are available from around €150 ($167 USD), depending on the size of the group. 

Photo shot of the beautiful rose on the garden of Egeskov Castle
Photo shot of the beautiful rose on the garden of Egeskov Castle. Rosen vor Schloss Egeskov flickr photo by greenoid shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

How Long Will It Take to Tour Around?

A tour of the castle estate takes around 3 – 4 hours.

Some words of advice and tips: 

  • Be sure to check whether the castle is open to the public on the date/s you wish to visit! For a full calendar of daily visiting hours and dates open to the public: Events Archive – Egeskov Slot
  • The castle is wheelchair accessible.
  • It is possible to visit the castle and return on the same day during opening hours, provided you have  been stamped at the ticket office on the premises before you exit.
  • You are allowed to take your own food and refreshments to the castle during your visit.
  • Dogs secured on a leash are permitted in the grounds and gardens but no pets are welcome inside the castle or museum.
  • COVID: Check for any regulations, opening hours, and restrictions on the official Egeskov Castle website, as rules have been changed and adapted several times since the pandemic started.

Quick Video Tour of The Main Egeskov Castle Areas

Charmaine Waterston
Charmaine Waterston
After studying Law and Industrial Psychology, I went on to start my own ICT data recovery business. Some years later I qualified locally as a Financial Advisor and ran my own business with a portfolio of clients. Throughout my life, I traveled extensively to many interesting countries around the world. While enjoying my life’s adventures, I absorbed the rich history of various cultures and experienced the beauty of so many different places! Today, I am an author. I combine my career and travel experience with my thirst for knowledge about our captivating world and the remarkable people in it. My writing is an expression of my passion for personal growth and my love of communication. I am truly fulfilling my dream through my work!

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