Neuschwanstein Castle: Guided tours, tickets and excursion tips

Neuschwanstein, Foto: Pixabay
Foto: Pixabay

The perfect day trip from Munich to Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein castle, built by King Ludwig II, even served as a model for the famous Disneyland castle. But there are many more reasons for a visit.

Neuschwanstein at a glance

  • The world-famous Neuschwanstein Castle is characterized by its idyllic location on a craggy cliff and its medieval facade.
  • Originally, the castle was built by King Ludwig II as a private retreat. However, before the construction work was completed, he died on June 13, 1886.
  • On August 1, 1886, the palace was opened for public viewing. Today, up to 6,000 people from all over the world stream through the chambers every day during the summer months.
  • From Munich, the fairytale castle in the Ammergau Alps can be reached in just under 2 hours by car and is thus perfect for a day trip.

Architecture: From a knight's castle to a Disney castle

Schloss Neuschwanstein, Foto: Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung
Foto: Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung

 Neuschwanstein castle stands on a craggy rock 200 meters above the valley. It was styled like the monumental Romanesque knight's castle, with the swan as a recurring symbol of the decor.

Incidentally, the extraordinary building of the "fairy tale king" Ludwig II also inspired Walt Disney:

  • The famous logo of the production company is based on the silhouette of Neuschwanstein.
  • And the castles in the animated fairy tales "Cinderella" and "Sleeping Beauty" are also modeled after the Bavarian castle.

Interior: The chambers of King Ludwig II

Schloss Neuschwanstein, Foto: Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung
Foto: Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung

As a reclusive dreamer, King Ludwig II built the castle just for himself. No stranger was ever to enter his imaginative counterworld.

Today, visitors have the opportunity to marvel at splendidly furnished living and representation rooms. Among the highlights:

  • King Ludwig II's chambers.
  • The sacral throne room
  • The Singers' Hall with impressive murals
  • A spectacularly illuminated grotto in the apartments

Castle highlights: Guided tours, tickets, café and souvenirs

, Foto: Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung
Foto: Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung

Visits to the palace chambers are only possible as part of a guided tour. Tickets can be purchased either online or at the Ticket Center in Hohenschwangau. The tickets must therefore be purchased before going up to the castle.

Neuschwanstein is always worth a visit, and you can admire the castle from the outside as well. Great photos are possible, for example, from the Marienbrücke. There's a signpost at the footpath.

Around the castle grounds, visitors can also:

  • Rest and fortify themselves in the café on the second floor
  • Experience a multimedia show on King Ludwig II and his castles
  • Stock up on souvenirs of all kinds in the museum store: from pocket knives to sofa cushions with the image of the fairy-tale king and the facade of the palace, everything is available

How to get to Neuschwanstein castle from Munich

  • By car: Take the A7 in the direction of Füssen to the end of the highway, then follow the B17 in the direction of Schwangau. At the end of the village, turn right towards Hohenschwangau and follow the signs to the (paid) parking spaces. Travel time: approx. 2 hours
  • By public transport: By train to Füssen train station, from here bus lines 73 and 78 make regular stops at "Hohenschwangau Neuschwanstein Castles, Schwangau". Travel time: approx. 3 hours

Once you arrive in Hohenschwangau, you can take a horse-drawn carriage ride up to the royal castle. A bus also regularly takes visitors to Neuschwanstein. Those who prefer a leisurely walk will walk for about 30 to 40 minutes.

The builder: Info about the fairy tale king Ludwig II

Gemälde von König Ludwig II. in bayerischer Generalsuniform mit Krönungsmantel, Foto: Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung www.schloesser.bayern.de
Foto: Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung www.schloesser.bayern.de

 King Ludwig II ruled Bavaria from 1864 until his death in 1886. He ascended the throne at the age of just 18 without any political experience. His main interest was in the arts, especially the composer Richard Wagner.

Ludwig had built his castles Herrenchiemsee, Linderhof and Neuschwanstein for his private use, in order to be able to retreat into his dream worlds far from any public view.

The king's sprawling building projects put a strain on his fortune. He was repeatedly forced to take out loans. Because of his indebtedness, the Bavarian government decided in 1886 to depose the king by means of a declaration of incapacity. Legends and myths still surround his death in Lake Starnberg.

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