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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 should I visit?
- March 28 to October 15, 9:00AM to 6:00PM, October 16 to March 27, 10:00AM to 4:00PM.
- Is it expensive?
- Castle ticket prices start at 12€ for adults.
- Will I need a guide?
- *Your entrance ticket reserves you a tour spot. *
- How to get there
- The bus from the Schlosshotel Lisl or the horse-drawn carriage from the Hotel Müller will drop you close to the castle.
- Additional information
Note 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
The trek, the fall colours, the palace and the castle..there is no better word than surreal!! I was smitten by the beauty of the place, the hills and the scenery that surrounded the royal beauties. The trip is planned very well, it gives time for a quick lunch, toilet breaks and to enjoy the tours without wasting any time. Our guide was very informative and helpful. She made sure we were on time so that we didn't miss any highlights of the tour. The drive was also quiet smooth and comfortable.
Gray Line, is a great company to do the tour around Munich, I went with them to the Neuschwaitein castle. Elizabeth and the driver were great guides, she explained every bit of our trip, she really knew the subject. I had a mishap on the trip, I ended up forgetting my wallet with documents, they went with me to the place where I forgot, they gave me all the support, because I don't speak German. Actually, I recommend the company, mainly because of Elizabeth's kindness and understanding.
It was excellent. The guide was really talkative, and knew his history. It was great! We saw both castles and they also took us to a small town where the Nativity is put on every ten years. It was really wonderful. I will tell you that the bus will leave early if everyone is there from the beginning. So when they say arrive 15 min before...they really mean it. No time is wasted to get going in the morning. Our adult daughter went with us on this trip.
The tour was very good and convenient, the bus was comfortable, the guide was friendly and explained a lot of things. However she recommended os to have lunch at Muller Cafe which was a bit pricy, but good food. The tours inside the castle were very organised in small groups of 10 people
Great way to see both castles with great commentary. Hanaen was our guide and she was awesome and very knowledgeable. Our driver was Smiley and he got us there and back safely. Thanks for a great day.