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The Fairytale Castle Neuschwanstein
Weilan @ 09/ 16/ 2010

Neuschwanstein Castle is located in Bavaria and considered by some to be the most beautiful castle in the world. Built by King Ludwig II of Bavaria, Neuschwanstein Castle looks like something out of a fairytale, which earned King Ludwig the nickname “The Fairytale King.” Ludwig greatly admired the composer Richard Wagner and built the castle in his honor. Neuschwanstein literally means “new swan stone” and was named after the Swan Knight, one of the characters in Wagner’s opera “Lohengrin.” Murals and tapestries depicting scenes from Wagner’s operas appear on walls throughout the castle, and rooms in the castle were designed in tribute to some of the characters. Singer’s Hall was designed to honor Wagner’s operatic hero Parsifal and is used today as a venue for theatrical performances.

We toured the castle and grounds and thoroughly enjoyed the detail and opulence that went into it.  Even though the castle isn't actually that "old", it feels old and well-cared for.  The beautiful paintings, tapestries and mosaics are quite stunning and are really something to see.  The wood carvings are spectacular and grand on a scale I've never seen before. 

The construction of Neuschwanstein began in 1869 and continued until after the king’s death. Originally planned to have 200 rooms, the design was downsized after the king died. The 15 rooms visitors see on tours today were furnished with fairytale opulence. Fourteen carpenters spent 4 ½ years working on the woodcarvings in King Ludwig’s bedroom alone. Exquisite workmanship is seen throughout the castle, and the interior is a mixture of architectural styles, from Gothic through Romanesque to Byzantine. The two-story Throne Room, which never held a throne, was influenced by the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul.

The castle’s scenic location on top of a hill in the Alps, with breathtaking views overlooking a gorge and several lakes, has made it a desirable location for movies, including “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” and “The Great Escape.” The castle was also the inspiration behind Walt Disney’s Magic Kingdom, and his Sleeping Beauty Castle was based on Neuschwanstein. Although the Bavarian castle was designed to resemble medieval architecture, complete with a gatehouse, towers, and turrets, it was built with modern conveniences, including hot and cold running water, automatic flush toilets, electricity, and a central heating system.  My favorite view from the castle is of the bridge above the castle looking down on Bavaria.  The views are awesome from the bridge and from the windows and walkways of the castle. 

Neuschwanstein Castle is the most-photographed structure in Germany. Its striking design and spectacular views of the surrounding countryside make it one of the most popular destinations for tourists in Europe.  A trip to Castle Neuschwanstein is well worth the time, especially if you've ever been to Disneyland.  You'll remember the visit always and enjoy the wonderful memories of this famous castle.

What were the WOW moments you experienced?
While the castle was beautiful inside and out, the views from the castle looking out on Bavaria are superb and a delight to see.
Germany, Fussen, Neuschwanstein Castle
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Bavaria  Castles  
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