In conjunction with its neighbour Rudelsburg Castle Saaleck Castle served as a so-called ‘barrier castle’. The main castle was presumably built in the first half of the 11th century. The western tower was the actual residential tower, as indicated by the Romanesque open fireplace in the original ground floor.
This Romanesque building dates back to the 11th century and is one of the oldest secular buildings in Germany. There are 24 small semicircular arched windows in the ground floor, as well as semicircular arched slots below the masonry wall crown in the roof storey. Above the south eastern gate door there is a monolithic tympanon with a bishop’s cross.