The castle originated in the 13th century. Around 1270, Zweder I van Zuylen van Abcoude built a freestanding keep on a raised and moated site near the lost city Dorestad. Now within the city limits of Wijk bij Duurstede.
Until the beginning of the 15th century Duurstede Castle was in possession by the Van Zuylen van Abcoude family, until they were forced to sell it to the Bishops of Utrecht in 1449.
The old donjon built by Zweder van Abcoude in the 13th century has withstood the passage of time reasonably well, and is an excellent example of medieval towers. The walls are 2.5 metres thick; the original entrance was at the second level and could only be reached with a wooden ladder that could be removed or destroyed in times of need.
One of the corner towers of the old castle was expanded in the 15th century into its current form. While the rest of the castle had a more residential purpose, the Burgundian tower obviously had a military purpose. It is more than 40 metres high, and has very thick walls.
The town and castle are a nice location choice for photographers!