Nothing could be more surprising than the impression the visitor receives, having wandered through the winding world of the Old Town, on entering the roomy Castle Square with its impressive double ring of buildings. The generously proportioned outer ring contains the service buildings and stalls which nowadays are partly used for gastronomy; the curtain wall with its smooth towers encloses the centre of the castle. The ground plan of a thirteen- sided polygon indicates the origin of the building as a moated castle, founded by the first lord of Büdingen in the twelfth century, and situated between the two branches of the Seemenbach. An independent county then developed under the Ysenburg dynasty which came to power in 1258.
Few of the subsequent counts have missed the chance to update this now more substantial castle to fit the stylistic expectations of the time, from Romanesque to Baroque. Although the castle is still inhabited by the twenty-third generation of the Ysenburg dynasty, it is also open to the public. Visitors may well have the impression that the noble owners have only just got up from the festively decorated tables, or have only just left the castle chapel (famous for its carved choir stalls) or have only just walked out of the impressive rooms decorated with sixteenth-century frescoes. A large part of the castle grounds is also open to the public. All kinds of waterfowl can be found swimming under the shelter of the weeping willows and the wetland areas are a favourite place for frogs, too. The sound of croaking frogs has always formed part of the natural background of Büdingen and that is why the inhabitants of Büdingen came to be popularly known as “Beuringer Frääsch” (“ Büdinger frogs”), from an early period. Nowadays, the people of Büdingen continue to celebrate their unofficial heraldic symbol by decorating their houses with frog outlines and figures and an annual “Frog Parade” is held in Spring too. (Guided Tours at the Castle-Museum - Call this number for a appoitment: 0049/ (0)6042/96470)