During our road trip through Germany towards Austria, a stop at the famous Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria could not be missed. So we made our way from Blautopf in Blaubeuren to Füssen in the Allgäu, where the first mountains of the Alps were already waiting for us – really scenic like from a picture book! 🏔 Everything shone in lush green, blue almost cloudless sky and bright sunshine – great that could only be good! 😍
The fairytale castle Neuschwanstein 🏰
There is hardly a more imposing and enchanting castle than Neuschwanstein. The gleaming white fairytale castle is enthroned near Schwangau on a mountain, surrounded by the green dense forest. The castle is simply a dream for anyone in which a little princess 👑 slumbers (as in me hihi 🙊). The whole environment seems so peaceful.
Parking at the castle 🚘
You can park your car in the designated parking spaces for 6 euros per day. Meanwhile, there is a no-stopping rule in the entire area and surrounding streets. 🚫 We arrived only at 6 pm, so the parking lot was already pretty empty. However, except for the Corona times, the castle is a popular tourist destination and the parking lot can be completely crowded in the morning hours. So currently you have the chance to visit without the tourist crowds. 👍 By the way, you can also take a longer hike from the neighboring town of Füssen to the castle if you have enough time.
Queen Mary’s Bridge, the most beautiful view of the castle 👀
From the parking lot, there are several ways to get to the castle. Our destination was the famous Queen Mary’s Bridge, from which you should have a breathtaking view of the castle. Not knowing exactly which footpath was probably the shortest, we decided to take the pretty forest path, thinking it would be a shortcut – fail! 😩 On the contrary, the path was rather arduous over hill and dale, without signs, so we came out after 40 minutes below the fence of the castle. 😂 The visitors gave us irritated looks, just like: where are you coming from, and isn’t that forbidden? 🙈 So if you prefer to stroll comfortably in your sandals to the castle, I rather recommend the asphalt path, which is also used by horse-drawn carriages and buses. However, the forest path is more idyllic and by the way, a really great if not magical view awaits you at the top. 💖
Arriving at the 90-meter-high Queen Mary’s Bridge, we feared quite a rush, as we had already looked at photos of the popular bridge. I think it’s impossible not to get slain by a selfie stick, it’s usually that crowded! 😅 But hey in times of Covid-19 everything is just different: there was a maximum of ten visitors on the bridge and we enjoyed in peace the Neuschwanstein Castle! It sits imposingly on a rock, surrounded by smaller waterfalls, as well as the Pöllatschlucht, over which the Queen Mary’s Bridge hangs. I found this view absolutely fascinating and still get a bit of goosebump when I think about it. 😏
The history of the castle 👑
The magnificent castle was built in 1869 by the Bavarian King Ludwig II. It was intended to serve as a kind of retreat from the public eye for him. 🌿 The construction of the fairytale castle took 17 years and ended up being so expensive that King Ludwig was declared unfit to rule. 🙈 He drowned in 1886 even before the castle was completed. There are many stories about how the king is said to have died. Whether it was suicide, murder or an accident is still not clear. After his death, the castle was opened directly to visitors, who enjoy its beauty to this day. You can also see the fairytale castle from the inside during a guided tour. During Corona time, tickets must be ordered online in advance and there is only a small number of participants. Unfortunately, we decided to take a tour too late, so all tickets were already sold out. Well, maybe next time. 😊
The little sister: Hohenschwangau Castle 🌼
On the way back to the car, we decided to take the asphalt path. 😃 There you can also admire from a distance the Hohenschwangau Castle, the nursery of the young King Ludwig II. You can also book a guided tour of this castle. However, we renounced it. It was finally evening and we decided to go to our accommodation, the Bavarian Hotel Bannwaldsee. 🚗
Trip to Oberammergau 🌸
Well fortified from our delicious breakfast, we continued our road trip to the city of Oberammergau, which is located right next to the Ammergau Alps Nature Park. ⛰ Wondering what makes this place so special? Well, Oberammergau shows you a whole range of art, culture, and tradition. 🎨 The house facades are decorated with the special technique of Lüftlmalerei and you will see handicrafts on every street corner. The whole thing is topped by the Ammergau Alps in the background and the beautiful flowers that entwine on the buildings. 🌺 Just let yourself be enchanted by the creative flair of the place and stroll a little through the alleys. The Pilatushaus in the heart of Oberammergau is particularly beautiful. It is decorated with numerous Lüftlmalereien and has a large garden. Don’t worry, you can’t miss it.🚶
Charming Ettal Abbey ⛪
If you’re already in Oberammergau, you should definitely visit Ettal Abbey, which is located in the southeast. 🗺 Founded in 1330, the Benedictine abbey houses, among other things, one of the oldest breweries in Germany and a beautiful baroque basilica. 🍺 It is the center of the complex and shines even when the weather is not so nice. 😉
A visit inside is also worthwhile, by the way. I’m not a big church connoisseur, but the golden elaborate decorations are really nice to look at and the atmosphere is somehow special. ✨
Eibsee, the Bavarian Caribbean 🌾
The last place we visited in Germany that day was the beautiful emerald green Eibsee with the small wooded islets and the mountain backdrop of the Zugspitze in the background. 🏔 The view is simply gorgeous and that is exactly why this beautiful mountain lake is nicknamed the “Bavarian Caribbean”. 😍
From Oberammergau, you drive about an hour to the parking lot directly at the foot of the Zugspitze. The daily fee is 5 Euros and there is plenty of space… well at least in Corona times. When we arrived, the famous Zugspitze was unfortunately completely covered by clouds, so we decided that a ride to the top would probably not be worth it, especially when I looked at the price of around 47€ for a ride up and down, really expensive! 😯
We preferred instead to walk around the lovely lake and enjoy the view of the clear water, the lush trees, and the mountains. Swimming is also allowed and for all sporty water rats, there are many offers for water sports like stand-up paddling or canoeing. 🏄 So if you’re in the area, a trip to Eibsee is a must!
As more and more clouds gradually appeared, we decided with a heavy heart to leave this beautiful spot and head to the next highlight. In retrospect, the best decision, because a real downpour came down. 🌧 Quickly away, towards the sun and Austria! 😎