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If you're reading this, you probably already know that Bavaria's Neuschwanstein was the inspiration for Disney's iconic castle. Here are five facts about King Ludwig II's dramatic palace that you probably don't know!
Ludwig grew up in Hohenschwangau, the medieval knights' castle that his parents owned. Ludwig's dreams of building a castle on the rugged hill above it began as early as childhood!
Upon first hearing Wagner, the teenage Prince Ludwig became a devoted patron. His dream palace was the stuff of the Germanic sagas in the great composer's operas!
Ludwig considered his vision too extraordinary to be realized by mere architects. Neuschwanstein was instead designed by Christian Jank, a stage designer from Munich!
Forced to abdicate by a frustrated cabinet, the popular but inattentive king was removed from his new home. The next day he went for a walk and was discovered dead hours later.
Ludwig was a reclusive king and had envisioned his dream palace to be a place of solitary refuge and reflection. Just seven weeks after his death it was opened to the public!
Neuschwanstein is open daily from March 28 to October 15 at 9:00AM until 6:00PM. From October 16 to March 27 it is open from 10:00AM until 4:00PM, except December 24, 25, 31 and January 1.
There are several modest hotels and pensions in the Hohenschwangau area. Alternatively, Neuschwanstein is also just a day-trip away from Munich!
It's possible to walk up the hill from Hohenschwangau but it's quite a trek! You'd be better off choosing between the regular shuttle bus departing from outside the Schlosshotel Lisl on Neuschwansteinstraße, or the more expensive horse-drawn carriage from the Hotel Müller on Alpseestraße. Note that both stop short of the castle for accessibility reasons, and the short walk from the shuttle bus stop might be too steep for the mobility impaired.
- When to visitMarch 28 to October 15, 9:00AM to 6:00PM, October 16 to March 27, 10:00AM to 4:00PM.
- What is the price?Castle ticket prices start at 12€ for adults.
- Will I need a guide?*Your entrance ticket reserves you a tour spot. *
- How to get thereThe bus from the Schlosshotel Lisl or the horse-drawn carriage from the Hotel Müller will drop you close to the castle.
- Additional tipsNote that you will need to do some uphill walk, and be prepared! | Book your tickets in advance! Tickets can sell out during peak times.
What People Are Saying About Neuschwanstein Castle
HIGHLY recommend Nancy. She's is a great guide. Enjoyed learning the history of the region and seeing the inside of the castle. You will have to buy a separate ticket for the castle, but it is really beautiful and ties the history together. The air is cool and crisp in the higher altitude so definitely dress for cooler weather in the winter and fall!
We got exactly what was promised. High-end tour bus with enthusiastic guide, Lucy. There were no problems whatsoever.
Unfortunately the horse carriers were not much available. It become an exhausted trip.
Thankyou so much for this absolutely fantastic day trip, we even enjoyed the coach trip due to Markus' lengths of really fascinating knowledge of Germany, Bavaria, King Ludwig and his castles. I cannot flaw this trip!! Advice: get a currywurst from the first little cafe you see when you stop off in the town for Neuschwanstein Castle - so yummy! Both castles blew us away along with the incredible landscape, what a fantastic day. Thanks again
Shared great stories about the people behind the castle and the context for when it was built. A wonderful day.