Castles and Germany go hand in hand. Fun truth, Germany has over 20,000 castles – starting from renaissance fortress model to dramatic castles that appear like they may very well be straight out of a fairy story. The nation has a number of the most castles in the world. During the Middle Ages, Germany was cut up into infinite little states, and castles turned constructed as strongholds and defensive bases for every territory. Now, you may go to castles in Germany in and round most cities, and seeing any fort is without doubt one of the hottest day journeys when visiting Germany.
Top Castles in Germany
With so many castles in Germany, which must you select to go to? This information will cowl the perfect castles in Germany. From the famed Neuschwanstein fort to the smaller Marburg Castle, these are essentially the most unbelievable castles on your journey to Germany.
1. Neuschwanstein Castle
Neuschwanstein Castle is without doubt one of the most visited castles in Germany. The dramatic turreted fort dates again to the Nineteenth century and is famed for its lovely look and setting. While it’s situated in Bavaria, simply exterior the city of Fussen, it has a rural backdrop. Neuschwanstein Castle backs onto Ammergebirge nature reserve. The fort appears like it’s floating above the encompassing forest. It is beautiful in autumn when the leaves flip orange and brown.
To go to Neuschwanstein Castle you enter on a fort tour the place you might be directed by an audio tour. The tour whisks you across the fort advanced, offering perception into the historical past of every room. Neuschwanstein Castle has one of the partaking guided excursions of all of the castles in Germany. Because it’s such a well-known fort, lots has been invested in its tourism infrastructure.
The historical past of Neuschwanstein Castle is equally fascinating. The fort was constructed by the ‘fairy tale king’ Ludwig II of Bavaria as a spot to retreat from the fashionable world. Sadly for Ludwig II, he died earlier than Neuschwanstein Castle was accomplished. But the fort nonetheless symbolizes an escape right into a fantasy world – therefore its nickname, the fairy story fort.
The fairy story look and story behind Neuschwanstein Castle is the rationale we’ve included it in our information. Besides, as one of the well-known castles in Germany, it’s the good addition to your itinerary. Remember to take a look at a number of the greatest issues to do in Bavaria if you go to, and if you’re staying in Munich, check out this Neuschwanstein day journey.
Opening Times: 9 am – 6 pm Entry Fees: $19
2. Wartburg Castle
Wartburg Castle is a shocking medieval fort with in depth reveals, together with artifacts from German historical past and artwork from the Middle Ages. The fort stands on a rocky summit, overlooking the parkland and low-lying countryside. Wartburg Castle sits simply exterior the city of Eisenach and is situated in central Germany – good if you wish to get out of Germany’s main cities.
Visitors can tour the fort and chateau museum. It is tastefully restored inside, and there are English translations for all of the reveals. You can go for one of many guided excursions at 1 pm or discover your self at your personal tempo, relying on how a lot further info you’d like. Wartburg Castle stands out for its reveals’ high quality and is right for these wanting an actual historic immersion into one of many best-preserved medieval castles in Germany.
This Castle has a captivating historical past, to say the least. The unique fort was constructed throughout the medieval interval, however a lot of what you see right now dates from Nineteenth-century restorations. In phrases of spiritual historical past, Martin Luther translated his first copy of the Bible in Wartburg Castle. Because of this, Wartburg Castle stays an emblem of pilgrimage right now,
It is extensively instructed that Wartburg Castle was the primary German fort to be awarded a UNESCO world heritage web site. Regardless, it is without doubt one of the most historic castles in Germany. The depth of its historical past (it has nearly 1,000 years of tales) and the standard of its reveals have earned it a spot in our information.
Opening Times: 9:30 am – 3:30 pm Entry Fees: $13
3. Heidelberg Castle
Heidelberg Castle is without doubt one of the most putting castles in Germany. While as soon as an image of grandeur, the crimson sandstone fort now partially lays in ruins. It is an atmospheric web site to wander. Heidelberg Castle is surrounded by a thick forest on a hillside slope. However, its rural setting is deceiving, as you might be only a ten-minute drive from the city of Heidelberg.
The Heidelberg Castle grounds are fascinating and embody a German apothecary museum and the biggest wine barrel in the world. Stopping for a wine-tasting expertise whereas touring a medieval fort is a singular expertise. This fort might be toured independently or as one of many guided excursions. You can stroll as much as the fort or take a scenic cable automobile. The cable automobile ticket consists of your entry to Heidelberg Castle. Or you may ebook a tour of each the city and the fort.
Mentions of Heidelberg Castle might be traced again to the thirteenth century – making it one in all Germany’s oldest castles and medieval fortresses. According to historic information, the fort was broken at first of the 14th century. When Rupert III rose to the German throne, it started being renovated. The fort was then concerned in many wars for the next centuries, together with the Nine Years’ War, the place French king Louis XIV destroyed the fort as soon as once more.
Heidelberg Castle is a shocking instance of a Gothic Renaissance fortress. The mixture of historical past, structure, and title-holding points of interest just like the wine barrel caught our consideration. The fort additionally holds UNESCO World Heritage Site standing. Heidelberg is definitely one of the intriguing castles in Germany.
Opening Times: 10 am – 5 pm Entry Fees: $10 (+ $6.50 for a guided tour)
4. Hohenzollern Castle
Hohenzollern Castle is a scenic Nineteenth-century fort famed for being residence to the Prussian royal crown and an expansive artwork assortment. It’s one of the basic castles in Germany, that includes turrets and a mountaintop location overlooking the countryside under. The fort is in southwest Germany throughout the Black Forest area, between the Bisingen and Hechingen.
Hohenzollern Castle is a major instance of a Gothic revival-style fort. The fort sits on the stays of an earlier medieval fort and has a wonderful fort chapel. You can simply spend a number of hours exploring the community of passages, backyard walkways, and staircases. The fort additionally has a royal treasury with weaponry shows.
Hohenzollern caught our eye for its Gothic revival structure and historic artifact shows. However, we additionally love the annual Christmas Market in the fort’s courtyard. Hohenzollern is a wonderful festive attraction when you go to Germany in December.
It is necessary to notice that Hohenzollern opens on a seasonal foundation. For nearly all of January, the fort is totally closed. And for February and March, the fort grounds are open, however Hohenzollern Castle is closed. Hohenzollern Castle solely opens totally between April and December. Furthermore, Hohenzollern Castle is round a three-hour drive from Munich – a super place to start out a highway journey. Check out our information on issues to do in Munich right here.
Opening Times: 10 am – 6:30 pm Entry Fees: $24 (when booked on-line)
5. Hohenschwangau Castle
Hohenschwangau Castle is without doubt one of the most ornate German castles in our information. The baroque-style fort is located in Bavaria, simply exterior the village of Schwangau. It is true subsequent to a wonderful lake well-known for summer season swimming. The fort’s surrounding hills are blanketed with dense forest and it has that basic rural setting.
Hohenschwangau Castle can solely be visited as a part of a guided tour. This isn’t any sacrifice, although, because the guided excursions have wonderful evaluations and take you across the elegantly adorned rooms contained in the fort. You will go to the royal bed room, dressing room, throne room, and grotto. The customary of restoration and upkeep is improbable, and Hohenschwangau Castle is without doubt one of the greatest castles in Germany to get a style of the normal inside and chateau life.
Hohenschwangau Castle can be one of the well-known castles in Germany and served because the royal summer season residence of King Ludwig II. The fort was first talked about in the twelfth century. However, it was absolutely renovated in the Nineteenth century below the rule of King Maximilian II.
The high quality of the surviving inside determined Hohenschwangau Castle’s place in this information. However, the lake and delightful gardens are additionally sturdy promoting factors for visiting Hohenschwangau Castle. If you might be visiting Hohenschwangau Castle in 2023, be aware that a number of the rooms are at the moment closed for restoration. We can’t complain because the homeowners do an awesome job maintaining the fort in prime situation however test the web site for particulars earlier than visiting.
Opening Times: 9 am – 4 pm Entry Fees: $16
6. Burg Hohenecken
Burg Hohenecken is a lesser-visited addition to our information. The fort stood overlooking the tiny village of Hohenecken in western Germany. Now, the crimson sandstone construction is a wonderful disarray of chateau ruins. Atmospheric and fewer touristy than numerous the opposite castles in Germany, Burg Hohenecken is superb for extra adventurous vacationers.
You can discover the grassy grounds of the fort at your personal leisure. Burg Hohenecken is a spot that’s meant to be self-explored. It is in style for guests to deliver a picnic in summer season, and plenty of households benefit from the lovely surroundings and open house. It is a brief hike up from Hohenecken and its practice station automobile park.
Its actual date of building is unknown, however historians estimate that Burg Hohenecken dates again to the start of the thirteenth century. It has at all times been on the sting of German historical past, even succumbing to a peasant revolt in 1525. We love its quiet however historic character. Despite seeming an unassuming (and remarkably lovely) addition to our favourite German castles, it’s definitely a hidden treasure amongst one of the best castles in Germany.
Opening Times: 24/7 Entry Fees: Free
7. Lichtenstein Castle
Lichtenstein Castle is without doubt one of the most dramatic-looking castles in Germany. The neo-gothic model construction sits on a cliff face, with one-half of the fort straight constructed onto the cliff edge. The dramatic setting provides Lichtenstein Castle a fairy story enchantment, and guests flock to witness the fort’s splendor in individual. The fort is a twenty-minute drive exterior the town of Reutlingen. It overlooks the village of Lichtenstein and the Greuthau nature reserve.
One of essentially the most thrilling elements of visiting Lichtenstein Castle is crossing the wood bridge to enter. Walking throughout the old-worldly entrance provides views of the cliffs under and really emphasizes the fort’s putting setting. Inside the fort, the non-public homeowners adorned the inside with conventional medieval decor. You can go to on one of many common guided excursions. Keep in thoughts that Lichtenstein Castle closes to the general public in January and February.
Unlike the remainder of our castles in Germany, Lichtenstein Castle was purpose-built to copy medieval instances. The fort was designed in the mid-Nineteenth century by Carl Alexander Heidloff, impressed by the novel Lichtenstein by Wilhelm Hauff. Lichtenstein Castle’s literary affect and dramatic setting rapidly received it a spot on our record.
Opening Times: 10 am – 4 pm for March, November, and December. 9 am – 5: 30 pm from April to October. Entry Fees: $13 (inc tour)
8. Schwerin Castle
Schwerin Castle is without doubt one of the most stand-out German castles you may go to. Forget your customary moated fort; Schwerin Castle is by itself island. The fort is located in Lake Schwerin in northern Germany, proper on the outskirts of Schwerin. Schwerin Castle is without doubt one of the most lovely castles in Germany and ideally suited for anybody desirous to discover a extra uncommon German fort.
The neo-renaissance structure is gorgeous to admire from the fort grounds. Entrance to the fort grounds can be free, a particular bonus for these on a finances. You cross over on Schlossbrucke bridge and have acres of grounds to wander. Inside, you may pay to tour ornate rooms, together with the dramatic throne room. Schwerin Castle was residence to the grand dukes of Mecklenburg for hundreds of years, and the fort has an illustrious historical past. Apart from the historic rooms and ornate furnishings, there’s additionally a European artwork assortment to admire.
Schwerin Castle is without doubt one of the greatest castles in Germany, and a few even nickname it ‘Neuschwanstein of the North’. Its island location attracted us first, however its historical past confirmed its place in our information. Schwerin Castle had necessary former residents and likewise served because the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern state parliament constructing. For historical past, politics, and structure rolled into one, Schwerin is a improbable German fort to go to. You can ebook a guided tour of Schwerin right here.
Opening Times: 10 am – 5 pm Entry Fees: $9
9. Altena Castle
Altena is without doubt one of the most informative castles in Germany. Located on a hill above the city of Altena, the fort is residence to a medieval historical past assortment and the World Youth Hostels Museum. Bizarrely sufficient, Altena Castle is the location of the world’s first youth hostel – nonetheless open if you wish to keep in a single day for a ‘castle hotel’ expertise. The small stone fort has lots to show you.
Inside the fort, there are quite a few reveals and academic shows. It is family-friendly and focused to have interaction all ages, making it in style for varsity journeys and household holidays. Since the fort has such a various historical past, there’s numerous historical past and totally different tales to uncover in your go to. The fort has been a hospital, a army garrison, and even a jail. After World War I, Richard Schirrmann opened the Altena youth hostel. He then based the German nationwide group of hostels a number of years later, in 1919. Visitors study in regards to the fort’s historical past in the museum – from geology to the hostel motion and the way historical past formed its area.
The fort’s distinctive connection to the hostel motion is what impressed us. However, it’s also among the finest German castles for households. The partaking shows are nice for maintaining younger guests , and it is a wonderful place for fogeys to take kids on an academic day trip.
Opening Times: 9:30 am – 5 pm Tuesday to Friday, and 11 am – 6 pm Saturday and Sunday. Entry Fees: $5.50
10. Wernigerode Castle
Wernigerode Castle is without doubt one of the greatest castles in Germany if you wish to expertise an previous medieval fortress. The fort sits in central Germany, simply exterior the small city of Wernigerode – which is a photographer’s heaven and comprises a medieval previous city. Both the fort and its environment are the epitome of old-worldly. The fort additionally backs onto nature reserves and towering hills with statement decks. It is right for anybody desirous to get out into the sticks and luxuriate in climbing.
Wernigerode Castle itself is constructed upon the medieval fortress ruins, and nearly all of the construction that you just see right now dates to the Nineteenth century. Visitors can ebook guided excursions of the fort inside, being led via ornate chambers and historic artifacts. The mix of structure is fascinating, and every century clearly left a mark on the fort. You can admire Gothic arched home windows in the inside courtyard and a Renaissance tower you could climb for views over the countryside. Wernigerode Castle is without doubt one of the most lovely castles in Germany, but in addition essentially the most architecturally stimulating.
The mix of structure is primarily what impressed us about Wernigerode Castle. Its entry and proximity to the encompassing nature reserves are to not be missed, although, and it’s well-suited to these wanting to go to a fort after which spend a number of days climbing.
Opening Times: Tuesday to Friday 10 am – 5 pm, and 10 am – 6 pm on Saturday and Sunday. Entry Fees: $7.60
11. Cochem Castle
Cochem Castle is also called Reichsburg Cochem or Reichsburg Castle. Reichsburg merely means ‘imperial’, and the fort obtained this standing when captured by King Konrad III. This fairly little hilltop constructing dates again to the eleventh century, and it is without doubt one of the most city German castles. Cochem Castle is situated alongside the River Moselle proper in the middle of the city of Cochem. Situated in the Rhine Valley, it is without doubt one of the greatest castles in Germany if you need a small-town environment alongside your fort expertise.
Visitors can tour contained in the fort on a forty-minute guided tour. The fort itself is comparatively small, so exploring isn’t bodily difficult. The fort receives extremely rated evaluations for its tour information service, and previous guests praised the passionate guides with numerous partaking info. For further perception into its historical past, a guided tour is worth it. Of course, for a barely uncommon expertise, you may even have a eating expertise at Reichsburg Castle. The fort’s restaurant has panoramic views over the city and the river under.
As we talked about, the fort was captured by King Konrad III in 1151 and renamed Reichsburg Castle. However, the fort’s building might be dated again to 1100, and it was initially used to cost passing ships for tolls. After passing quite a few fingers over the next centuries, the fort was destroyed by the French in 1689 and resurrected solely in 1868.
The fort’s panoramic restaurant views and scenic place in Cochem city drew us to it. We love the small-town environment and gothic really feel. Look no additional if you need a neo-gothic fort tour in the Rhine Valley.
Opening Times: 10 am – 3 pm Entry Fees: $9
12. Drachenburg Castle
Drachenburg Castle is one other gem in the Rhine Valley. The fort was modeled in the model of a medieval fort, very similar to Lichtenstein Castle. It has a improbable location and sits on the banks of the Rhine River, simply exterior the principal metropolis of Bonn. For views over the Rhine River, this medieval-style fort is without doubt one of the greatest castles in Germany.
Drachenburg Castle has quite a few totally different excursions that cowl different elements of the fort. You can select the choice that most closely fits you, your pursuits, and your finances. Some embody areas just like the ‘private floor,’ and others add specific areas just like the terrace, which has gorgeous views over the River Rhine.
Drachenburg Castle was constructed in the late Nineteenth century and acted as a non-public villa earlier than its homeowners turned it into a number of totally different ventures. Jacob Biesenbach went so far as to remodel Drachenburg Castle right into a group heart. Egbert Von Simon (nearly) remodeled it into an amusement park. During World War II, a Nazi elite college took over the fort. Drachenburg Castle’s story went downhill, finally ending in spoil between 1960 and 1970. Fortunately, in 1986, it was introduced as a listed monument. It was renovated into its full glory that you just see right now.
Ultimately, Drachenburg Castle’s scenic locale is what received us over. It has unmatched views of the River Rhine, and we love how accessible it’s from Bonn. Its historical past can be various and colourful, good for those who need a extra fashionable perception into Germany.
Opening Times: 12 pm – 5 pm on Saturday and Sunday Entry Fees: $9 for traditional entry
13. Mespelbrunn Castle
Mespelbrunn is without doubt one of the prettiest castles in Germany. Mespelbrunn Castle is surrounded by a peaceable moat and cuts an idyllic image towards a small forest backdrop. The fort is round an hour’s drive from Frankfurt however is in the center of nowhere. It is the proper candidate for a day journey away from the craziness of Frankfurt. Its nearest settlement is the tiny village of Mespelbrunn – the fort’s namesake.
Mespelbrunn Castle has that fairy story attract that’s so frequent amongst one of the best castles in Germany. You’ll need to pay the doorway charge if you wish to rise up shut. But its delicate magnificence makes the price worthwhile. The moat is residence to trout and swans. And inside, you may take a guided tour of stylish and conventional rooms.
The fort is privately owned however open to the general public on particular days and circumstances (reminiscent of solely being accessible through guided tour). It is believed up to now again to the fifteenth century, between the medieval and Renaissance interval. The fort was lucky to have escaped destruction by the French in the Thirty Years’ War, saved by its distant location and thick surrounding forest. The fort remains to be inhabited right now by the household of the Counts of Ingelheim.
We’ll be trustworthy: Mespelbrunn Castle’s beauty sealed this deal. The lovely surroundings and peaceable moat make Mespelbrunn among the finest castles in Germany. It is a improbable alternative if you need a small, photogenic fort. And much more so if you’re in search of issues to do on a day journey from Frankfurt. Mespelbrunn can be only a two-hour drive from Nuremberg when you fancy basing your self in a smaller metropolis. You can take a look at essentially the most superb issues to do in Nuremberg right here.
Opening Times: 9:30 am – 5 pm Entry Fees: $6.50
14. Landgrafen Palace, aka Marburg Castle
Landgrafen Palace is an previous medieval fort that dates again to the eleventh century. It is usually known as Marburg Castle, given its scenic location in the middle of the city of Marburg. Marburg has a wonderful previous city that includes half-timbered homes and conventional streets. Just an hour north of Frankfurt, Landgrafen Palace makes a wonderful day journey.
The fort has an enormous gothic corridor, historic paintings, furnishings, and artifacts. It in all fairness priced to enter, with lovely views over Marburg and its surrounding countryside. If you need extra info, there’s additionally a Museum of Cultural History.
Starting as a medieval fortress, Landgrafen Palace progressed to the non-public residence of the Landgraviate of Hesse. In 1529, it held a dispute assembly between Martin Luther and Ulrich Zwingli. Finally, post-1981, Landgrafen Palace turned a museum. Landgrafen has seen lots in its years – from the battle of the Middle Ages to the start of contemporary Christianity.
What stood out most to us was its lengthy historical past and placement in Marburg. The fort’s distance from Frankfurt can be ideally suited, as it’s good for these wanting day journeys from a metropolis break.
Opening Times: 10 am – 6 pm. Closed on Tuesdays. Entry Fees: $6
15. Burghotel Auf Schönburg Oberwesel
Burghotel Auf Schönburg Oberwesel is barely totally different from our different castles in Germany. This medieval fort has been remodeled right into a stately resort, the place visitors can keep in a single day in conventional rooms or dine on the restaurant with views of the Rhine. The four-star fort resort is perched on a clifftop overlooking the city of Oberwesel on the Rhine River. It is right for individuals who need greater than a normal fort expertise. You can take a look at costs right here if you’re in staying on the resort.
Guests can nonetheless take in the fort’s historical past by visiting its museum or tower. Those who determine to remain in a single day, not only for a meal, can ebook distinctive rooms. Some room choices are set in the fort turrets and include balconies the place you may admire the views of the river and surrounding vineyards.
Schönburg Castle was constructed in the twelfth century and renovated in the twentieth century to stabilize the unique construction. It has seen many wars and dramatic occasions, making it an iconic a part of Germany’s historical past and structure. While it caught our consideration with its distinctive Twenty first-century hospitality, Schönburg Castle has some fascinating tales behind it. The fort is value visiting, and don’t overlook to go wine tasting if you do.
Opening Times: 24/7 Entry Fees: Rate of room/meal
16. Eltz Castle
Eltz Castle is a romantic little fort tucked away in a forest close to the village of Wierschem. Not removed from Cochem, it’s well-combined with a highway journey to Cochem Imperial Castle, and it’s situated close to the Luxembourg border. Eltz Castle is ideal when you plan to journey to extra distant areas of Germany.
Eltz Castle is visited by guided tour solely, lasting round thirty minutes. You can catch the shuttle bus as much as the fort, which is improbable if you wish to save your legs, because the hill is a killer. You cross over a conventional stone bridge and peek inside all of the totally different rooms, admiring the decor and listening to some unbelievable tales. The fort is famed for its knights corridor but in addition has a dungeon and personal chambers. At the top of the expertise, you get entry to the treasury and tons of of invaluable artifacts.
Amazingly, Eltz Castle remains to be owned by the Eltz household, who’ve resided there for the reason that twelfth century. 33 generations of the Eltz household have lived in the fort – a reasonably spectacular feat. We love its distant location and off-the-beaten-track sense of journey. It’s additionally fascinating the way it has been in a single household for such an extended interval.
Opening Times: 9:30 am – 5 pm (April to November solely) Entry Fees: $13
17. Dresden Castle
Dresden Castle is extra of a museum than a stereotypical fort, however it’s fascinating and well-known nonetheless. Located proper in the middle of Dresden, it is without doubt one of the metropolis’s oldest buildings and Germany’s earliest palace buildings. The fort was a residence for kings for almost 400 years and is now ‘retired’ and thought of the cultural heart of Dresden.
The fort is sensible to inside, not just for its historical past but in addition for its expansive artwork assortment. Dresden is residence to a palace state artwork assortment. You may simply spend a day wandering its corridors and rooms, admiring the hundreds of artifacts. You can admire work, statues, and extra historic shows like weaponry, jewellery, and historic clothes. Prepare your self for a various vary of reveals.
The unique fort in Dresden was constructed in the thirteenth century however was suffering from a number of disasters. The constructing has been rebuilt many instances. The 18th century was essentially the most damaging, involving a disastrous hearth that meant Augustus II needed to fee a whole rebuild – primarily in Baroque model relatively than the unique Romanesque and Renaissance influences. During World War II, Dresden Castle was broken once more in 1945. It was solely in 2013 that the fort was restored to full glory.
Dresden is without doubt one of the most iconic castles in Germany and comprises a number of the nation’s greatest treasures. The museum’s huge scale and reveals made us determine so as to add Dresden Castle to our information. Its thrilling historical past was simply the cherry on prime. Check out common admission tickets right here.
Opening Times: 10 am – 6 pm. Closed on Tuesdays. Entry Fees: $15
Germany has so many lovely castles; you might be positively spoiled for alternative. The vary of chateau varieties means you may go to a handful of one of the best castles in your journey and nonetheless have a special expertise at each. Exploring historic fort life in Germany can be an immersive solution to uncover extra about European cultural historical past.
Are you debating visiting a number of castles on the identical journey? You can at all times plan a romantic highway journey between them. How many castles may you see on a week-long highway journey? Have a magical time visiting one of the best castles in Germany. You are in for a deal with.