Castles and Germany go hand in hand. Fun reality, Germany has over 20,000 castles – starting from renaissance fortress type to dramatic castles that appear to be 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 limitless 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 fortress is among the hottest day journeys when visiting Germany.
Top Castles in Germany
With so many castles in Germany, which do you have to select to go to? This information will cowl the perfect castles in Germany. From the famed Neuschwanstein fortress to the smaller Marburg Castle, these are essentially the most unimaginable castles in your journey to Germany.
1. Neuschwanstein Castle
Neuschwanstein Castle is among the most visited castles in Germany. The dramatic turreted fortress dates again to the Nineteenth century and is famed for its stunning look and setting. While it’s situated in Bavaria, simply outdoors the city of Fussen, it has a rural backdrop. Neuschwanstein Castle backs onto Ammergebirge nature reserve. The fortress seems like it’s floating above the encircling forest. It is beautiful in autumn when the leaves flip orange and brown.
To go to Neuschwanstein Castle you enter on a fortress tour the place you’re directed by an audio tour. The tour whisks you across the fortress complicated, offering perception into the historical past of every room. Neuschwanstein Castle has one of the crucial partaking guided excursions of all of the castles in Germany. Because it’s such a well-known fortress, so much has been invested in its tourism infrastructure.
The historical past of Neuschwanstein Castle is equally fascinating. The fortress 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 fortress nonetheless symbolizes an escape right into a fantasy world – therefore its nickname, the fairy story fortress.
The fairy story look and story behind Neuschwanstein Castle is the rationale we’ve included it in our information. Besides, as one of the crucial 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 once 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 fortress with intensive reveals, together with artifacts from German historical past and artwork from the Middle Ages. The fortress stands on a rocky summit, overlooking the parkland and low-lying countryside. Wartburg Castle sits simply outdoors 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 fortress 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 additional 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 an enchanting historical past, to say the least. The authentic fortress was constructed through the medieval interval, however a lot of what you see in the present day dates from Nineteenth-century restorations. In phrases of non secular historical past, Martin Luther translated his first copy of the Bible in Wartburg Castle. Because of this, Wartburg Castle stays a logo of pilgrimage in the present day,
It is broadly advised that Wartburg Castle was the primary German fortress to be awarded a UNESCO world heritage web site. Regardless, it is among the most historic castles in Germany. The depth of its historical past (it has virtually 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 among the most hanging castles in Germany. While as soon as an image of grandeur, the purple sandstone fortress 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’re only a ten-minute drive from the city of Heidelberg.
The Heidelberg Castle grounds are fascinating and embrace a German apothecary museum and the biggest wine barrel in the world. Stopping for a wine-tasting expertise whereas touring a medieval fortress is a novel expertise. This fortress will be toured independently or as one of many guided excursions. You can stroll as much as the fortress or take a scenic cable automobile. The cable automobile ticket contains your entry to Heidelberg Castle. Or you may ebook a tour of each the city and the fortress.
Mentions of Heidelberg Castle will be traced again to the thirteenth century – making it considered one of Germany’s oldest castles and medieval fortresses. According to historic information, the fortress was broken in the beginning of the 14th century. When Rupert III rose to the German throne, it started being renovated. The fortress was then concerned in many wars for the next centuries, together with the Nine Years’ War, the place French king Louis XIV destroyed the fortress 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 sights just like the wine barrel caught our consideration. The fortress additionally holds UNESCO World Heritage Site standing. Heidelberg is well one of the crucial 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 fortress famed for being house to the Prussian royal crown and an expansive artwork assortment. It’s one of the crucial traditional castles in Germany, that includes turrets and a mountaintop location overlooking the countryside under. The fortress 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 fortress. The fortress sits on the stays of an earlier medieval fortress and has a wonderful fortress chapel. You can simply spend a couple of hours exploring the community of passages, backyard walkways, and staircases. The fortress 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 fortress’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 the vast majority of January, the fortress is totally closed. And for February and March, the fortress 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 great place to start out a street 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 among the most ornate German castles in our information. The baroque-style fortress is located in Bavaria, simply outdoors the village of Schwangau. It is true subsequent to a wonderful lake well-known for summer time swimming. The fortress’s surrounding hills are blanketed with dense forest and it has that traditional 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 critiques and take you across the elegantly adorned rooms contained in the fortress. You will go to the royal bed room, dressing room, throne room, and grotto. The commonplace of restoration and upkeep is incredible, and Hohenschwangau Castle is among the greatest castles in Germany to get a style of the standard inside and chateau life.
Hohenschwangau Castle can be one of the crucial well-known castles in Germany and served because the royal summer time residence of King Ludwig II. The fortress was first talked about in the twelfth century. However, it was absolutely renovated in the Nineteenth century underneath 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 robust promoting factors for visiting Hohenschwangau Castle. If you’re 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 incredible job retaining the fortress in high 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 fortress stood overlooking the tiny village of Hohenecken in western Germany. Now, the purple sandstone construction is a wonderful disarray of chateau ruins. Atmospheric and fewer touristy than a number of the opposite castles in Germany, Burg Hohenecken is great for extra adventurous vacationers.
You can discover the grassy grounds of the fortress at your personal leisure. Burg Hohenecken is a spot that’s meant to be self-explored. It is well-liked for guests to deliver a picnic in summer time, and plenty of households benefit from the stunning surroundings and open area. It is a brief hike up from Hohenecken and its prepare station automobile park.
Its precise date of building is unknown, however historians estimate that Burg Hohenecken dates again to the start of the thirteenth century. It has all the time 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 stunning) addition to our favourite German castles, it’s actually a hidden treasure amongst the most effective castles in Germany.
Opening Times: 24/7 Entry Fees: Free
7. Lichtenstein Castle
Lichtenstein Castle is among the most dramatic-looking castles in Germany. The neo-gothic type construction sits on a cliff face, with one-half of the fortress straight constructed onto the cliff edge. The dramatic setting offers Lichtenstein Castle a fairy story enchantment, and guests flock to witness the fortress’s splendor in individual. The fortress is a twenty-minute drive outdoors town of Reutlingen. It overlooks the village of Lichtenstein and the Greuthau nature reserve.
One of essentially the most thrilling components of visiting Lichtenstein Castle is crossing the picket bridge to enter. Walking throughout the old-worldly entrance provides views of the cliffs under and actually emphasizes the fortress’s hanging setting. Inside the fortress, 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 fortress 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 shortly gained 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 among the most stand-out German castles you may go to. Forget your commonplace moated fortress; Schwerin Castle is by itself island. The fortress is located in Lake Schwerin in northern Germany, proper on the outskirts of Schwerin. Schwerin Castle is among the most stunning castles in Germany and superb for anybody desirous to discover a extra uncommon German fortress.
The neo-renaissance structure is beautiful to admire from the fortress grounds. Entrance to the fortress 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 house to the grand dukes of Mecklenburg for hundreds of years, and the fortress 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 among 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 in addition served because the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern state parliament constructing. For historical past, politics, and structure rolled into one, Schwerin is a incredible German fortress 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 among the most informative castles in Germany. Located on a hill above the city of Altena, the fortress is house 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 fortress has so much to show you.
Inside the fortress, there are quite a few reveals and academic shows. It is family-friendly and focused to interact all ages, making it well-liked for varsity journeys and household holidays. Since the fortress has such a various historical past, there’s a number of historical past and completely different tales to uncover in your go to. The fortress has been a hospital, a navy 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 couple of years later, in 1919. Visitors be taught concerning the fortress’s historical past in the museum – from geology to the hostel motion and the way historical past formed its area.
The fortress’s distinctive connection to the hostel motion is what impressed us. However, it’s also the most effective German castles for households. The partaking shows are nice for retaining younger guests , and it is a wonderful place for folks to take youngsters on an academic time out.
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 among the greatest castles in Germany if you wish to expertise an previous medieval fortress. The fortress sits in central Germany, simply outdoors the small city of Wernigerode – which is a photographer’s heaven and accommodates a medieval previous city. Both the fortress and its environment are the epitome of old-worldly. The fortress additionally backs onto nature reserves and towering hills with remark decks. It is right for anybody desirous to get out into the sticks and luxuriate in mountaineering.
Wernigerode Castle itself is constructed upon the medieval fortress ruins, and the vast majority of the construction that you just see in the present day dates to the Nineteenth century. Visitors can ebook guided excursions of the fortress inside, being led by means of ornate chambers and historic artifacts. The mix of structure is fascinating, and every century clearly left a mark on the fortress. You can admire Gothic arched home windows in the internal courtyard and a Renaissance tower you can climb for views over the countryside. Wernigerode Castle is among the most stunning castles in Germany, but additionally essentially the most architecturally stimulating.
The mix of structure is primarily what impressed us about Wernigerode Castle. Its entry and proximity to the encircling nature reserves are to not be neglected, although, and it’s well-suited to these wanting to go to a fortress after which spend a couple of days mountaineering.
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 referred to as Reichsburg Cochem or Reichsburg Castle. Reichsburg merely means ‘imperial’, and the fortress acquired this standing when captured by King Konrad III. This fairly little hilltop constructing dates again to the eleventh century, and it is among 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 among the greatest castles in Germany if you would like a small-town ambiance alongside your fortress expertise.
Visitors can tour contained in the fortress on a forty-minute guided tour. The fortress itself is comparatively small, so exploring isn’t bodily difficult. The fortress receives extremely rated critiques for its tour information service, and previous guests praised the passionate guides with a number of partaking info. For additional perception into its historical past, a guided tour is worth it. Of course, for a barely uncommon expertise, you might even have a eating expertise at Reichsburg Castle. The fortress’s restaurant has panoramic views over the city and the river under.
As we talked about, the fortress was captured by King Konrad III in 1151 and renamed Reichsburg Castle. However, the fortress’s building will be dated again to 1100, and it was initially used to cost passing ships for tolls. After passing quite a few palms over the next centuries, the fortress was destroyed by the French in 1689 and resurrected solely in 1868.
The fortress’s panoramic restaurant views and scenic place in Cochem city drew us to it. We love the small-town ambiance and gothic really feel. Look no additional if you would like a neo-gothic fortress 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 fortress was modeled in the type of a medieval fortress, very similar to Lichtenstein Castle. It has a incredible location and sits on the banks of the Rhine River, simply outdoors the principal metropolis of Bonn. For views over the Rhine River, this medieval-style fortress is among the greatest castles in Germany.
Drachenburg Castle has quite a few completely different excursions that cowl different components of the fortress. You can select the choice that most accurately fits you, your pursuits, and your finances. Some embrace areas just like the ‘private floor,’ and others add specific areas just like the terrace, which has beautiful views over the River Rhine.
Drachenburg Castle was constructed in the late Nineteenth century and acted as a personal villa earlier than its homeowners turned it into a number of completely different ventures. Jacob Biesenbach went so far as to rework Drachenburg Castle right into a neighborhood heart. Egbert Von Simon (virtually) reworked it into an amusement park. During World War II, a Nazi elite college took over the fortress. 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 in the present day.
Ultimately, Drachenburg Castle’s scenic locale is what gained us over. It has unmatched views of the River Rhine, and we love how accessible it’s from Bonn. Its historical past can be numerous and colourful, good for people who need a extra trendy perception into Germany.
Opening Times: 12 pm – 5 pm on Saturday and Sunday Entry Fees: $9 for traditional entry
13. Mespelbrunn Castle
Mespelbrunn is among the prettiest castles in Germany. Mespelbrunn Castle is surrounded by a peaceable moat and cuts an idyllic image in opposition to a small forest backdrop. The fortress is round an hour’s drive from Frankfurt however is in the center of nowhere. It is the right candidate for a day journey away from the craziness of Frankfurt. Its nearest settlement is the tiny village of Mespelbrunn – the fortress’s namesake.
Mespelbrunn Castle has that fairy story attract that’s so widespread amongst the most effective castles in Germany. You’ll should pay the doorway payment if you wish to stand up shut. But its delicate magnificence makes the price worthwhile. The moat is house to trout and swans. And inside, you may take a guided tour of stylish and conventional rooms.
The fortress is privately owned however open to the general public on particular days and circumstances (reminiscent of solely being accessible by way of guided tour). It is believed up to now again to the fifteenth century, between the medieval and Renaissance interval. The fortress was lucky to have escaped destruction by the French in the Thirty Years’ War, saved by its distant location and thick surrounding forest. The fortress continues to be inhabited in the present day by the household of the Counts of Ingelheim.
We’ll be sincere: Mespelbrunn Castle’s attractiveness sealed this deal. The stunning surroundings and peaceable moat make Mespelbrunn the most effective castles in Germany. It is a incredible selection if you would like a small, photogenic fortress. 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 try essentially the most wonderful 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 typically 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 fortress has an enormous gothic corridor, historic paintings, furnishings, and artifacts. It in all fairness priced to enter, with stunning 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 so much in its years – from the battle of the Middle Ages to the beginning of contemporary Christianity.
What stood out most to us was its lengthy historical past and placement in Marburg. The fortress’s distance from Frankfurt can be superb, 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 completely different from our different castles in Germany. This medieval fortress has been reworked right into a stately lodge, the place friends can keep in a single day in conventional rooms or dine on the restaurant with views of the Rhine. The four-star fortress lodge is perched on a clifftop overlooking the city of Oberwesel on the Rhine River. It is right for individuals who need greater than an ordinary fortress expertise. You can try costs right here if you’re in staying on the lodge.
Guests can nonetheless take in the fortress’s historical past by visiting its museum or tower. Those who resolve to remain in a single day, not only for a meal, can ebook distinctive rooms. Some room choices are set in the fortress 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 fortress is value visiting, and don’t overlook to go wine tasting once you do.
Opening Times: 24/7 Entry Fees: Rate of room/meal
16. Eltz Castle
Eltz Castle is a romantic little fortress tucked away in a forest close to the village of Wierschem. Not removed from Cochem, it’s well-combined with a street 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 fortress, which is incredible 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 completely different rooms, admiring the decor and listening to some unimaginable tales. The fortress is famed for its knights corridor but additionally has a dungeon and personal chambers. At the top of the expertise, you get entry to the treasury and a whole lot of invaluable artifacts.
Amazingly, Eltz Castle continues to be owned by the Eltz household, who’ve resided there because the twelfth century. 33 generations of the Eltz household have lived in the fortress – a fairly 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 fortress, however it’s fascinating and well-known nonetheless. Located proper in the middle of Dresden, it is among the metropolis’s oldest buildings and Germany’s earliest palace buildings. The fortress was a residence for kings for practically 400 years and is now ‘retired’ and regarded the cultural heart of Dresden.
The fortress is sensible to inside, not just for its historical past but additionally for its expansive artwork assortment. Dresden is house 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 historical clothes. Prepare your self for a various vary of reveals.
The authentic fortress in Dresden was constructed in the thirteenth century however was tormented by 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 complete rebuild – primarily in Baroque type fairly 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 fortress was restored to full glory.
Dresden is among the most iconic castles in Germany and accommodates a number of the nation’s greatest treasures. The museum’s huge scale and reveals made us resolve so as to add Dresden Castle to our information. Its thrilling historical past was simply the cherry on high. Check out common admission tickets right here.
Opening Times: 10 am – 6 pm. Closed on Tuesdays. Entry Fees: $15
Germany has so many stunning castles; you’re undoubtedly spoiled for selection. The vary of chateau varieties means you might go to a handful of the most effective castles in your journey and nonetheless have a distinct expertise at every one. Exploring historical fortress life in Germany can be an immersive technique to uncover extra about European cultural historical past.
Are you debating visiting a couple of castles on the identical journey? You can all the time plan a romantic street journey between them. How many castles may you see on a week-long street journey? Have a magical time visiting the most effective castles in Germany. You are in for a deal with.