Castles of Germany
Germany is a country packed with castles of all styles, sizes and ages. In fact, there are over 25,000 castles in all of Germany, many of them around Munich in the state of Bavaria.
Back in the Middle Ages the country was divided into many smaller feudal states. Each principality had to have their own fortress to keep their land holdings secure and safe from possible invaders. Now that the feudal states era is long gone, visitors to southern Germany can get up close and personal with some of the well-preserved castles that dot the countryside.
By far and away the most recognizable castle in all of Germany is Neuschwanstein Castle, or Schloss.
Little less than two hours southeast (125km) of Munich, near the city of Füssen, the late 19th century castle was a private summer retreat for fairy-tale King Lugwig II.
Also sometimes known as the Disney Castle Germany, the medieval style palace was built to include some of the most modern and technologically advanced features of the time. Youll feel like you stepped right out of a fairytale when you visit this beautiful, mountaintop palace. And be sure to check out the equally as astounding Hohenschwangau Castle, located just below the Neuschwanstein, while in the vicinity.
The Füssen area is also home to a few other popular castles of Germany. One of the most famous being Linderhof. This palace was another royal retreat for Lugwid II and is famous for its Hall of Mirrors and Rococo furnishings. The Linderhof sits on a beautiful reflecting pool and is encased by a vast park full of grottoes, gardens and terraces.
A little closer to Munich near Rosenheim is the grandiose Herrenchiemsee New Palace. This is yet another magnificent palace commissioned by King Ludwig II and it was a chance to fulfill his dream of constructing a "New Versailles". Built on an island in Lake Chiemsee, it was the Kings largest castle and is located about an hour southwest (100km) of Munich.
Just north of the city, the Schleißheim New Palace in Oberschleißheim is a monumental structure with detailed interior decoration by early 18th century artists such as Zimmermann, Asam and Amigoni.
The palace sits on a lake with enormous fountains and features baroque gardens that have remained virtually the same as they were in the 1700s.
If you would like to stay in the city limits while exploring castles of Germany or two, I suggest you head over to the Nymphenburg Palace located almost right in the heart of the city.
The rather cube-shaped palace was started in the late 17th century and was added on as the years went by. The interior is decorated in lavish Rococo style, and the surrounding gardens and waterways are a delightful, colorful treat in the spring and summer.
Also in Munich is The Residenz, which was originally a small moated castle.
Now home to the lavish Hall of Antiquities and other ornate rooms and chapels, it is a place within the city that's not to be missed.
And if you are left still wanting to see more castles of Germany, there are plenty others to visit in the surround Bavarian region. For a full listing of castles around Munich, visit the site here. But be warned, it may take you the better half of a lifetime to see them all!