Hartenfels Castle is the only preserved castle of the early Renaissance in Germany. You can feel the splendour of this era as soon as you enter the magnificent castle courtyard. The Grosser Wendelstein – a spiral staircase that leads upwards without supporting columns – is a masterpiece created by the architect Konrad Krebs. Hartenfels was the most modern residential palace in Saxony for a long time. It became a venue for glamorous festivals, legislative bodies and weddings, and Elector Johann Frederick made it an important place for the cultivation of music. When the Electors of Saxony relocated to Dresden, the castle in Torgau began to serve completely different purposes and was used to house soldiers. Hartenfels Castle now shines in its former splendour after extensive restoration work was completed a few years ago. Its history is conveyed in a variety of ways through sightseeing opportunities, sophisticated exhibitions and special tours. The areas of the castle in which exhibitions are not hosted are used as offices by the District Administration of North Saxony, the owner of the building. The castle courtyard also provides an impressive backdrop for musical events and theatrical performances.