Visiting Neuschwanstein: A Fairytale Castle In The Bavarian Alps
During my trip to the Munich Christmas Markets, I took a tour to visit the fairytale castle in the Bavarian Alps that is Neuschwanstein.
The inspiration behind Walt Disney’s famous Sleeping Beauty castle, Neuschwanstein has been on my bucket list for a while.
For my trip to Neuschwanstein, I booked a tour through Gray Line Munich. This was my first time booking with Gray Line, and they were very reliable.
My tour guide Ana was fantastic, not only was she very friendly and happy to answer any questions but she had a great sense of humour and lots of local knowledge.
The tour busses leave from outside the Karstadt department store, which is centrally located next to the Hopftbanhoef station.
The Bavarian Town Of Oberammergau
The first stop on the tour was at a small town called Oberammergau, pronounced “Uber-amma-gow”. It was everything I imagined a little town in Bavaria to be, Beautiful surroundings and buildings painted with intricate designs. This is a good place to buy souvenirs, as prices were far cheaper than Munich centre.
This quaint little town offers a mix of coffee shops, restaurants and gift shops. The town has a very interesting history, every ten years the town presents a performance of the passion play. It is a 380-year-old tradition, first performed in 1634; the inhabitants made a vow that if God spared them from the Bubonic Plague then they would perform the Passion play every decade.
Our second stop was Linderhof Palace. It is one of the three Palaces built by King Ludwig II, also being the smallest. Linderhof is the only Palace of King Ludwig II that he lived to see completed. The design influence of this small palace was based on that of Versailles.
We were given a short tour of the inside. We didn’t have time to visit the Venus grotto, but if you are visiting on your own it’s highly recommended.
The final stop on the tour was of course the biggest highlight. The Neauschwanstein Castle (pronounced “Noish-van-stine” not “Noose-wan- steen”)
Being the Disney nerd that I am, I’ve wanted to visit this castle for a very long time. It was of course, the inspiration behind Disney’s Sleeping Beauty Castle.
Before our timed entry into the Castle, we had some free time to grab lunch. Lunch was weinerschnitzel, spaztl and a King Ludwig beer at Hotel Muller. Everything was amazing and tasted authentically Bavarian.
There are two ways to get to the castle, you can wait for the horse drawn carriages, which are an extra fee, or walk. I opted to walk. The walk up isn’t a hike but it’s also not the easiest. If you have time you can walk slower and enjoy the amazing views.
Along the way you’ll find this very cute hut that sells “Quarkbullchen”. A traditional German treat that is very similar to a donut. They are battered and fried balls of “quark” which is a type of cheese. You must try these!
The inside of Neuschwanstein was just as beautiful as the outside. Unfortunately I have no photos of the inside, as there is a strict no photography policy.
Once inside we learned a little more about King Ludwig II and his fairytale castle. King Ludvig II never lived to see the completion of the castle; he spent a total of 11 nights there.
With some free time left before concluding the tour, I wandered the surrounding areas. At the base of the castle was a small Christmas market, sat next to the magnificent Alpsee Lake.
With a coffee in hand I boarded my bus back to the City of Munich.
Neuschwanstein Castle was a massive highlight for me, not only because of its inspiration for Disney, but also because of its history and beauty.
The tour lasted around 10 hours so a full day is needed, and is $61 through the Gray Line website
Have you ever visited Neuschwanstein?
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