Le château de Valangin. Photo/Foto: TES.

Valangin Castle

The first written sources of the castle of Valangin date from the 13th century. However, the castle was already built in the 12th century. Until the 16th century, the castle was the seat of the lords of Valangin. The territory has always been involved in a power struggle between the Bishop of Basel, the County of Montbéliard, the Duchy of Savoy and the County of Neuchâtel. The (royal) D’Orléans-Longueville family, the owner of the county of Neuchâtel since 1543, took over the castle in 1592 after the extinction of the Valangin family. For this French family, however, it was a remote area and no longer geographically and politically interesting since the disappearance of the dukes of Burgundy from the (battle) scene in 1477 and Savoy from Vaud in 1536. In addition, France maintained good relations with the Swiss cantons (not least because of the inexhaustible source of mercenaries and as a buffer against Habsburg). In the eventful history of the castle, including fire, prison (the reformer Guillaume Farel (1489-1565) was imprisoned there in 1530), negligence and destruction in 1789, the canton of Neuchâtel manages and renovates the castle since 1894. The Société d’histoire et d’archéologie du canton de Neuchâtel (SHAN) and the historic Musée de Valangin are also housed in the castle (More information: