When I was in Munich visiting a friend, I was lucky enough to visit the famous Neuschwanstein Castle or known as the “castle of the fairy-tale king”. The excitement of visiting the famous fairy tale castle is a dream for every girl (okay, maybe it’s my dream….). The Neuschwanstein Castle is located in a village of Hohenschwangau in southwest Bavaria, it takes around 1 hour and 45 minutes from Munich by car. The impressive castle is a nineteenth-century Romanesque Revival palace where it has inspired Disneyland’s Sleeping Beauty Castle.
King Ludwig II of Bavaria commission the castle to be built with his own funds and the construction of the castle started in summer 1868 and it was said to take 24 years for the final completion in 1892. However, 12 years later in 1884, the castle was somewhat completed and Ludwig II was ready to move in. Unfortunately, Ludwig II died in 1886 and never got to see the castle completed.
The Neuschwanstein Castle stands on a rugged hill where you can purchase tickets at the bottom in the Hohenschwangau ticket center. A guided tour is the only way to visit the castle and they are offered in either English and German but audio guides are offered in Japanese, French, Spanish, Italian, Czech, Slovenian, Russian, Polish, Chinese (Mandarin), Portuguese, Hungarian, Greek, Dutch, Korean, Thai and Arabic. The tours last around 30 minutes. While wandering through the grand castle it is elaborately decorated with precise details throughout all the rooms and hall.
- Neuschwanstein means “New Swan Stone”. The name of the castle derives from one of Wagner’s opera’s character, the Swan Knight.
- Hence King Ludwig was a great admirer of Richard Wagner, a world-renowned composer and the castle was built in his honor.
- The castle was built for the one and only King Ludwig II.
- King Ludwig II only slept in the castle for 11 nights before he died.
- Originally it was named New Hohenschwangau Castle. The castle was renamed Neuschwanstein shortly after the king’s death.
- The castle was officially open for the general public in 1886.
- Every year over 1,300,000 people cross the gate of Neuschwanstein Castle.
- Up to 6,000 tourists visit the castle a day.
- It took nearly 5 years for 14 constructors to carve the woodwork in the king’s chamber.
- The largest castle room is the Hall of Singers, followed by the throne room.
- There is no throne in the castle, as the Throne Hall was not completed before Ludwig’s death.
- The throne room is two stories high and is modeled after a Byzantine basilica which was inspired by the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul.
- Christian Jack was the designer of the castle. He wasn’t an architect but was a theatrical set designer.
- From the original plans, the castle should have more than 200 room but only 15 rooms and halls were completed.
- Due to the secluded location, the palace was not destroyed during the second world war.
Enjoy the visual diary of Neuschwanstein Castle!
Biggest shout out to my friend Sebastian for driving us there!
Till next time, -M