Larochette Castle, locally known as Château de Larochette or Burg Fels, lies above the village of the same name, east of the town of Mersch in Luxembourg. It is built on a rocky promontory, 150 meters above the White Ernz stream, a tributary of the Sûre river.
Larochette Castle consists of a main castle on the end of the promontory, separated from a large bailey by a natural dry moat.
The Lords of Larochette were first mentioned at the end of the 12th century. The castle itself probably dates back to the end of the 11th century. In 1255 Larochette Castle was bought by Arnold III von Fels who in 1270 took part in the crusade against Tunis with Saint Louis; the French King Louis IX.
At the end of the 14th century Larochette Castle had become a 'Ganerbenburg'; which meant that it was owned and lived in by several noble families. In this case the Homburg, Créhange (or Criechingen in German), Pittingen, Fels and Fels-Reuland families. All the rules of this joint ownership were laid down in a 'Burgfrieden'; a Castle Peace. All these families resided in their own houses which were built in the main castle. The Homburger House was built in 1350 after the brothers Friederich and Konrad, Lords of Homburg, married the sisters Irmgard and Mathilde of Fels. The Criechinger House was built in 1385.
In 1565 the castle was destroyed by a large fire and fell to ruin. Because of quarrels between the many heirs the castle was never rebuilt and was used as a quarry.
In 1979 the ruins of Larochette Castle were acquired by the State of Luxembourg after which restoration works followed. The ruin of the Criechinger House was rebuilt between 1983 and 1987 and now houses a small museum. When I visited archeological excavations were still going on.
This is a very nice castle in a pleasant, although touristic, village and it is surely worth a visit. It can be visited for a small fee.
Meysembourg Castle is nearby.