The attractive Alpine borderlands of southern Bavaria is house to a few of Germany’s most liked historic points of interest. The forested mountains, with their craggy ridges resembling the backs of dragons, lush valleys and glistening lakes, make for image good surroundings. Set towards this beautiful backdrop are the castles of King Ludwig II. ‘Mad’ King Ludwig lived within the nineteenth century however his legacy of fairy-tale monuments continues to thrill guests until this present day. The King Ludwig II castles I’ve visited are Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau and Linderhof, that are close to each other a few two-hour drive south of Munich. His last masterpiece, Herrenchiemsee Palace, which I’ve but to go to, is positioned southeast of Munich.
Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau and Linderhof can fairly simply be visited in a day however I like to recommend taking extra time to discover the encircling space. In addition to the attractive Alpine surroundings, there are different small cities and historic points of interest that are greater than value a go to. I like to recommend hiring a automotive to go to the castles and uncover different locations of curiosity on a 2-3 day highway journey. Right here’s what you possibly can see on a self-drive tour of King Ludwig II’s castles south of Munich:
The epitome of over-the-top nineteenth century Romanticism, it’s straightforward to see why Neuschwanstein is essentially the most well-known of King Kudwig II’s castles. The design of Neuschwanstein, with its many turrets and lavish inside, was impressed by medieval castles and Wagner’s operas – a mixture that romanticises the Center Ages. Constructed on the inspiration of dual medieval castles, Neuschwanstein took 17 years to construct and was accomplished in 1886.
The most effective viewpoints of Neuschwanstein Fort
Neuschwanstein is finest identified for its iconic views from numerous spots increased within the surrounding mountains. Getting to those viewpoints requires a hike, which may be fairly steep in locations. Arguably the very best view is from the Marienbrücke (Mary’s Bridge). It’s a reasonably slender bridge and it’s very fashionable so I counsel getting there early. Comply with the purple-marked path from the fortress. When you’re up for an extended hike, proceed previous the Marienbrücke – the highway turns into a dust path – and also you’ll quickly discover a number of viewpoints that are lots quieter however which supply superb views.
Within the valley, there are additionally numerous spots the place you possibly can get pleasure from an attractive view of the fortress. Comply with the Schlossstrasse to seek out these spots.
Neuschwanstein is positioned a few two-hour drive from Munich, making a day journey doable. When you don’t have a automotive, I like to recommend becoming a member of a full-day tour that features transportation and a guided tour of the fortress. Word that it’s solely doable to tour the fortress as a part of a guided (group) tour. You can even mix Neuschwanstein with Linderhof in one tour. Both method, I like to recommend reserving your spot on a guided tour method prematurely to keep away from disappointment. There’s solely a restricted variety of tickets offered on the ticket workplace every day and these are likely to promote out very quick.
Located atop a low hill not removed from Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau was constructed by King Maximilian II, Ludwig’s father, in neo-Gothic fashion and was accomplished in 1836. The younger Ludwig spent a lot of his childhood right here. From his bed room window, he might see the ruins of the dual medieval castles, and a while later, the development of Neuschwanstein on the identical spot.
Upon its completion, Hohenschwangau Fort grew to become the summer season residence of the Bavarian royal household, who additionally frolicked right here once they went on their searching journeys. The inside of the fortress is lavish, with painted partitions, elaborate ornamental ceilings and unique furnishings.
Linderhof Palace would be the smallest of King Ludwig II’s palaces however its spectacular location, surrounded by mountains, beautiful gardens and plush forests, makes it my favorite! Moreover, along with the palace itself, there are numerous smaller buildings on the palace grounds which can be merely awe-inspiring. King Ludwig II lived a lot of his final years in Linderhof, surrounded by fantastical, unique interiors.
Constructed between 1863 and 1886, Linderhof was designed in rococo fashion and closely influenced by Versailles in France. It even has a smaller model of Versailles’ well-known Corridor of Mirrors. A number of the highlights of Linderhof embrace the palace (Schloss) itself, the attractive gardens, terraces and fountains, the Venus Grotto, the Moorish Kiosk and the Moroccan Home.
Between Neuschwanstein and Linderhof
Linderhof is roughly an hour’s drive from Neuschwanstein. There are two routes you possibly can observe: a barely shorter route by means of Austria, or the northern route that stays inside Germany. When you go for the northern route, there are a number of locations to go to alongside the best way:
Wieskirche or Church of Wies
Wieskirche is a vital pilgrimage church constructed within the 18th century. A UNESCO World Heritage, Wieskirche is an oval-shaped church in rococo fashion. Set in an attractive Alpine valley, the church boasts an exuberant inside with elaborate frescoes and gildings.
Oberammergau is a historic city that’s well-known for 2 issues: woodcarvings and its The Ardour performs (which were carried out since 1634). It’s a stunning place for a stroll and a meal. There are additionally quite a few retailers and woodcarving workshops to go to.
For one thing a bit extra thrilling, try the Alpine Coaster, positioned simply outdoors Oberammergau. That is the longest all-weather toboggan run on this planet. The two.6km monitor begins at 1,258m excessive and snakes its method down the mountain. Extra information here.
Not too removed from Oberammergau lies the Ettal Abbey, a powerful construction and one of many largest Benedictine monasteries in Europe. Ettal Abbey was based within the 14th century. A hearth destroyed a lot of the abbey and church in 1744, nevertheless it was rebuilt in a lavish Baroque fashion. The church, with its spectacular dome, is a must-visit!
When you’re driving from Munich to Neuschwanstein/Linderhof, think about a cease within the village of Polling to go to the wondrous columns of STOA 169, a cool artwork mission. Learn extra about STOA 169.
Examine a road trip along the Main River in northern Bavaria.