Castles and Germany go hand in hand. Fun truth, Germany has over 20,000 castles – starting from renaissance fortress type to dramatic castles that appear like they might be straight out of a fairy story. The nation has among the most castles in the world. During the Middle Ages, Germany was break up into infinite little states, and castles turned constructed as strongholds and defensive bases for every territory. Now, you possibly can go to castles in Germany in and round most cities, and seeing any citadel is without doubt one of 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 citadel 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 citadel dates again to the Nineteenth century and is famed for its lovely look and setting. While it’s positioned in Bavaria, simply exterior the city of Fussen, it has a rural backdrop. Neuschwanstein Castle backs onto Ammergebirge nature reserve. The citadel appears to be like 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 citadel tour the place you’re directed by an audio tour. The tour whisks you across the citadel complicated, offering perception into the historical past of every room. Neuschwanstein Castle has one of the vital partaking guided excursions of all of the castles in Germany. Because it’s such a well-known citadel, rather a lot has been invested in its tourism infrastructure.
The historical past of Neuschwanstein Castle is equally fascinating. The citadel 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 citadel nonetheless symbolizes an escape right into a fantasy world – therefore its nickname, the fairy story citadel.
The fairy story look and story behind Neuschwanstein Castle is the explanation we’ve included it in our information. Besides, as one of the vital well-known castles in Germany, it’s the excellent addition to your itinerary. Remember to take a look at among the greatest issues to do in Bavaria while 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 surprising medieval citadel with in depth displays, together with artifacts from German historical past and artwork from the Middle Ages. The citadel stands on a rocky summit, overlooking the parkland and low-lying countryside. Wartburg Castle sits simply exterior the city of Eisenach and is positioned in central Germany – excellent if you wish to get out of Germany’s main cities.
Visitors can tour the citadel and chateau museum. It is tastefully restored inside, and there are English translations for all of the displays. 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 data you’d like. Wartburg Castle stands out for its displays’ 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 citadel 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 citadel 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 displays 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 purple sandstone citadel 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 embody a German apothecary museum and the biggest wine barrel in the world. Stopping for a wine-tasting expertise whereas touring a medieval citadel is a singular expertise. This citadel could be toured independently or as one of many guided excursions. You can stroll as much as the citadel or take a scenic cable automobile. The cable automobile ticket contains your entry to Heidelberg Castle. Or you possibly can guide a tour of each the city and the citadel.
Mentions of Heidelberg Castle could be traced again to the thirteenth century – making it certainly one of Germany’s oldest castles and medieval fortresses. According to historic information, the citadel was broken originally of the 14th century. When Rupert III rose to the German throne, it started being renovated. The citadel was then concerned in many wars for the next centuries, together with the Nine Years’ War, the place French king Louis XIV destroyed the citadel as soon as once more.
Heidelberg Castle is a surprising 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 citadel additionally holds UNESCO World Heritage Site standing. Heidelberg is definitely one of the vital 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 citadel famed for being residence to the Prussian royal crown and an expansive artwork assortment. It’s one of the vital basic castles in Germany, that includes turrets and a mountaintop location overlooking the countryside beneath. The citadel is in southwest Germany inside the Black Forest area, between the Bisingen and Hechingen.
Hohenzollern Castle is a major instance of a Gothic revival-style citadel. The citadel sits on the stays of an earlier medieval citadel and has a good looking citadel chapel. You can simply spend a couple of hours exploring the community of passages, backyard walkways, and staircases. The citadel 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 citadel’s courtyard. Hohenzollern is a good looking festive attraction for those who go to Germany in December.
It is essential to notice that Hohenzollern opens on a seasonal foundation. For the vast majority of January, the citadel is totally closed. And for February and March, the citadel 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 – an excellent 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 citadel is located in Bavaria, simply exterior the village of Schwangau. It is correct subsequent to a good looking lake well-known for summer season swimming. The citadel’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 is not any sacrifice, although, because the guided excursions have wonderful critiques and take you across the elegantly adorned rooms contained in the citadel. You will go to the royal bed room, dressing room, throne room, and grotto. The customary of restoration and upkeep is unbelievable, and Hohenschwangau Castle is without doubt one of the greatest castles in Germany to get a style of the standard inside and chateau life.
Hohenschwangau Castle can also be one of the vital well-known castles in Germany and served because the royal summer season residence of King Ludwig II. The citadel 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 exquisite gardens are additionally robust promoting factors for visiting Hohenschwangau Castle. If you’re visiting Hohenschwangau Castle in 2023, be aware that among the rooms are at present closed for restoration. We can’t complain because the house owners do an awesome job protecting the citadel 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 citadel stood overlooking the tiny village of Hohenecken in western Germany. Now, the purple sandstone construction is a good looking disarray of chateau ruins. Atmospheric and fewer touristy than plenty of the opposite castles in Germany, Burg Hohenecken is superb for extra adventurous vacationers.
You can discover the grassy grounds of the citadel at your personal leisure. Burg Hohenecken is a spot that’s meant to be self-explored. It is fashionable for guests to convey a picnic in summer season, and lots of households benefit from the lovely surroundings and open area. It is a brief hike up from Hohenecken and its prepare station automobile park.
Its actual date of development 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 actually a hidden treasure amongst the perfect 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 type construction sits on a cliff face, with one-half of the citadel immediately constructed onto the cliff edge. The dramatic setting offers Lichtenstein Castle a fairy story attraction, and guests flock to witness the citadel’s splendor in particular person. The citadel is a twenty-minute drive exterior 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 beneath and really emphasizes the citadel’s putting setting. Inside the citadel, the non-public house owners 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 duplicate medieval instances. The citadel 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 received it a spot on our listing.
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 possibly can go to. Forget your customary moated citadel; Schwerin Castle is by itself island. The citadel 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 very best for anybody eager to discover a extra uncommon German citadel.
The neo-renaissance structure is beautiful to admire from the citadel grounds. Entrance to the citadel grounds can also be free, a particular bonus for these on a price range. You cross over on Schlossbrucke bridge and have acres of grounds to wander. Inside, you possibly can 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 citadel 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 essential 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 unbelievable German citadel to go to. You can guide 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 citadel is residence to a medieval historical past assortment and the World Youth Hostels Museum. Bizarrely sufficient, Altena Castle is the positioning 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 citadel has rather a lot to show you.
Inside the citadel, there are quite a few displays and academic shows. It is family-friendly and focused to interact all ages, making it fashionable for varsity journeys and household holidays. Since the citadel has such a diverse historical past, there’s plenty of historical past and completely different tales to uncover in your go to. The citadel 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 couple of years later, in 1919. Visitors be taught concerning the citadel’s historical past in the museum – from geology to the hostel motion and the way historical past formed its area.
The citadel’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 protecting younger guests , and it is a superb place for folks 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 citadel sits in central Germany, simply exterior the small city of Wernigerode – which is a photographer’s heaven and incorporates a medieval previous city. Both the citadel and its environment are the epitome of old-worldly. The citadel additionally backs onto nature reserves and towering hills with commentary decks. It is right for anybody eager to get out into the sticks and revel in climbing.
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 guide guided excursions of the citadel inside, being led via ornate chambers and historic artifacts. The mix of structure is fascinating, and every century clearly left a mark on the citadel. You can admire Gothic arched home windows in the internal courtyard and a Renaissance tower which 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 citadel after which spend a couple 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 citadel 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 positioned 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 in order for you a small-town ambiance alongside your citadel expertise.
Visitors can tour contained in the citadel on a forty-minute guided tour. The citadel itself is comparatively small, so exploring isn’t bodily difficult. The citadel receives extremely rated critiques for its tour information service, and previous guests praised the passionate guides with plenty of partaking data. For further perception into its historical past, a guided tour is worth it. Of course, for a barely uncommon expertise, you would even have a eating expertise at Reichsburg Castle. The citadel’s restaurant has panoramic views over the city and the river beneath.
As we talked about, the citadel was captured by King Konrad III in 1151 and renamed Reichsburg Castle. However, the citadel’s development could 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 citadel was destroyed by the French in 1689 and resurrected solely in 1868.
The citadel’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 in order for you a neo-gothic citadel 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 citadel was modeled in the type of a medieval citadel, very similar to Lichtenstein Castle. It has a unbelievable 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 citadel is without doubt one of the greatest castles in Germany.
Drachenburg Castle has quite a few completely different excursions that cowl different components of the citadel. You can select the choice that most accurately fits you, your pursuits, and your price range. Some embody areas just like the ‘private floor,’ and others add explicit 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 non-public villa earlier than its house owners turned it into a number of completely different ventures. Jacob Biesenbach went so far as to rework Drachenburg Castle right into a group heart. Egbert Von Simon (nearly) reworked it into an amusement park. During World War II, a Nazi elite faculty took over the citadel. Drachenburg Castle’s story went downhill, finally ending in break 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 received us over. It has unequalled views of the River Rhine, and we love how accessible it’s from Bonn. Its historical past can also be various and colourful, excellent for those who desire 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 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 citadel 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 citadel’s namesake.
Mespelbrunn Castle has that fairy story attract that’s so widespread amongst the perfect castles in Germany. You’ll need to pay the doorway payment 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 possibly can take a guided tour of stylish and conventional rooms.
The citadel is privately owned however open to the general public on particular days and situations (similar to solely being accessible through guided tour). It is believed so far again to the fifteenth century, between the medieval and Renaissance interval. The citadel was lucky to have escaped destruction by the French in the Thirty Years’ War, saved by its distant location and thick surrounding forest. The citadel remains to be inhabited in the present day 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 unbelievable alternative in order for you a small, photogenic citadel. And much more so if you’re on the lookout for issues to do on a day journey from Frankfurt. Mespelbrunn can also be only a two-hour drive from Nuremberg for those who 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 usually known as Marburg Castle, given its scenic location in the middle of the city of Marburg. Marburg has a good looking previous city that includes half-timbered homes and conventional streets. Just an hour north of Frankfurt, Landgrafen Palace makes a superb day journey.
The citadel has an enormous gothic corridor, historic art work, furnishings, and artifacts. It within reason priced to enter, with lovely views over Marburg and its surrounding countryside. If you need extra data, 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 rather a lot 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 site in Marburg. The citadel’s distance from Frankfurt can also be very best, as it’s excellent 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 citadel has been reworked right into a stately lodge, the place company can keep in a single day in conventional rooms or dine on the restaurant with views of the Rhine. The four-star citadel lodge is perched on a clifftop overlooking the city of Oberwesel on the Rhine River. It is right for many who need greater than a typical citadel expertise. You can try costs right here if you’re in staying on the lodge.
Guests can nonetheless take in the citadel’s historical past by visiting its museum or tower. Those who determine to remain in a single day, not only for a meal, can guide distinctive rooms. Some room choices are set in the citadel turrets and include balconies the place you possibly can 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 citadel is price visiting, and don’t overlook to go wine tasting while you do.
Opening Times: 24/7 Entry Fees: Rate of room/meal
16. Eltz Castle
Eltz Castle is a romantic little citadel 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 positioned close to the Luxembourg border. Eltz Castle is ideal for those who 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 citadel, which is unbelievable if you wish to save your legs, because the hill is a killer. You cross over a standard stone bridge and peek inside all of the completely different rooms, admiring the decor and listening to some unbelievable tales. The citadel is famed for its knights corridor but in addition has a dungeon and personal chambers. At the tip of the expertise, you get entry to the treasury and tons of of helpful 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 citadel – 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 citadel, 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 citadel was a residence for kings for practically 400 years and is now ‘retired’ and regarded the cultural heart of Dresden.
The citadel is good 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 1000’s 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 displays.
The unique citadel in Dresden was constructed in the thirteenth century however was stricken 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 somewhat 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 citadel was restored to full glory.
Dresden is without doubt one of the most iconic castles in Germany and incorporates among the nation’s greatest treasures. The museum’s huge scale and displays 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’re positively spoiled for alternative. The vary of chateau sorts means you would go to a handful of the perfect castles in your journey and nonetheless have a special expertise at each. Exploring historical citadel life in Germany can also be an immersive option to uncover extra about European cultural historical past.
Are you debating visiting a couple 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 the perfect castles in Germany. You are in for a deal with.