Neuschwanstein Castle

Few places in the world look more like storybook illustrations than Germany’s Neuschwanstein Castle. With its turrets, towers, throne hall, and frescoes, Neuschwanstein (or Schloss Neuschwanstein called in native German) looks like it was picked straight from your favorite fairy story. 

King Ludwig II of Bavaria built the castle, also referred to as the “Fairytale King.” Ludwig was a great supporter of Richard Wagner, a popular composer. The king built the castle in honor of Wagner’s compositions. The composer’s characters inspired most rooms in the interior.

The third floor specifically reflects King Ludwig’s admiration for Wagner’s operas. Neuschwanstein, which means “New Swan Castle” in German, quotes “Swan Knight,” one of Wagner’s characters.

Fun Facts

King Ludwig only slept 11 nights in the Neuschwanstein castle.

The medieval castle is one of the most photographed buildings globally, even though photography is not allowed inside the building.

Fourteen carpenters worked for more than four years to carve the woodwork in the bedroom.

The Schloss Neuschwanstein inspired the Sleeping Beauty Castle’s design in Disneyland.

Christian Jank, a theatrical designer, created the castle’s design and outline.

Architecture & History

Neuschwanstein, a castle of the paradox, was built in the 19th Century in Germany. While it looks like a medieval structure, it was fitted inside with advanced technology at the time. For instance, on every floor of the castle, there were lavatories with an automatic flushing system.

Neuschwanstein’s location is also an idyllic one. It nestles in the Alps in Bavaria, Germany, at the heart of a breathtaking landscape. 

The castle also has a gorgeous inner garden surrounded by an enclosed courtyard. Though only 14 rooms were constructed before Ludwig’s demise in 1886, these rooms were magisterially created.

The throne room was designed in Byzantine architecture, with wall paintings representing angels. 

Today, Neuschwanstein is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful castles in the world. On the trip I made to Germany, I traveled with another friend from Richmond, who upon his retirement from his siding company in Richmond Va., took a couple classes on German history and the history of many of the castles, and insisted we go to Europe, and particularly Germany. He eventually talked me into it. It is unbelievable. We took tours along the Mosel and Rhine river valleys and saw some of the most spectacular sights I have ever seen. We even stayed in a couple of the castles we saw.

Sitting out on a balcony way up on the side of a hill one night drinking wine and eating cheese, we were looking down onto the lights from the town below with a tranquil river running next to it when a train slowly made its way through the scene. It was shocking what a beautiful scene it was. Unfortunately no picture could have done it justice. I became sold on Germany after spending this time there. The food and countryside are simply amazing. They do not use the preservatives we use here so everything tastes so much better. Even something as simple as french fries actually have a good flavor that ours do not have. I hope to spend a lot more time in Germany.