When you’re a child, hearing stories of far off places, mountains and beautiful castles high on the hill, you have to imagine a place more beautiful, more remote, and sometimes even just more.
And, in my opinion, Schloss Neushwanstein in the Bavarian Alps has definitely lived up to every single fairytale fantasy I’ve ever had!
Imagine a small town in the valley between beautiful mountains, covered in trees, and fields. Imagine a wide lake, blue-green and clear so you can see the rocks lining the bottom. And reflected in the lake are mountains.
Now, turn around. There is a castle to the left, in the ‘traditional style’ with square turrets and painted yellow. This is the smaller Schloss (palace).
Walk down the road a little, enjoy the stereotypical german architecture that makes you feel as if you stepped into the pages of Grimm’s Fairytales. Mutter curses at tourists who get in the way of your picture.
Ok, now its time to start climbing! Schloss Neuschwanstein is halfway up, so take the winding path through the glades. Above you, a clear blue sky, the light dappling onto the pavement. Some people are riding horse and carts to the top.
Then suddenly, you round the corner, and get your first proper glimpse of this amazing white building, perched on the mountain and appearing through the trees. Its exciting! You stop to take photos, before carrying on, with a newfound urgency – you’re nearly there!
Just below the castle, there is a platform. On one side, a perfect view of the castle, the other, a beautiful view of the valley!
You’ll tarry a while, gazing, wondering how perfect a setting could have been selected for the location of this castle. Then you wonder when you got so inspired!
We didn’t go inside, in all honesty, the draw of the castle was its beauty, and its location. But the bits of the castle we saw were amazing! I think the fairytale it reminded me most of was Beauty and the Beast (post True Loves Kiss of course).
After standing, taking multiple pictures and just generally staring at the view, you see a sign for a bridge, and you’re curious, so you wander up the trail again. There is an even better view round the corner, overlooking the lake (Alpsee) that looks like something from a movie, or a fairytale.
But the view from the bridge! It’s almost like someone just dropped a castle onto the mountainside, overlooking a craggy valley and its amazing!
All in all, by golly, it feels like you slipped through the pages into a magical world! And I swear, just looking at the picture of the Alpsee, it looks like we were somewhere far more exotic that Bavaria!
The day at Neuschwanstein, with Anna, and friends we had made in our hostel, was absolutely definately my favorite day thus far!
We finished the day by a visit to a monastery, famous for its beer brewing, near Germering, Munich, for beer and beer cheese with pretzel that was just amazing. And then, to finish the day perfectly, we all went swimming in the lake near the hostel, too cool off after the walk and near 40 degree heat!
It was beautiful, and I went with the best people, and had the most amazing day ever!
So, I would whole heartedly recommend a trip to Schloss Neuschwanstein. Apparently it looks amazing in winter as well, but I’ll have to take googles word on that!