Reifferscheid castle, first documented in 1106, is situated in the Municipality of Hellenthal, near the border between the Eifel and the Ardennen. It is a medieval hilltop castle, typical for the Eifel. The present day grounds consisting of castle ruins, bailey and fortress reflects the transformation of this former government seat.
Through carelessness a soldier caused a fire on 23 June 1669, which destroyed the Reifferscheid castle and a large part of the upper village. After, the castle was rebuilt as a Baroque palace. Once again the castle was partly destroyed in the reunion wars of Louis XIV and rebuilt. In 1805 the castle was put up for auction. As it disintegrated continually it was used as a quarry and finally only ruins were left.
The well-kept bailey, the surrounding wall with two town gates and ruins from the former palace, in addition to a well preserved 600 year old layout of the town ground plan are well worth seeing.
The Catholic parish St Matthias offers regular guided tours around the castle and the church on Sundays. The Count of Salm-Reifferscheid was buried in St Matthias in the 17th century. The entombment had been forgotten and was only re-discovered in the 19th century.
On the first Advent weekend there is an annual Christmas market in the castle grounds.
The Reifferscheid castle lies directly on the Castle route.