• Neuschwanstein castle in the spring
  • Neuschwanstein castle in the summer
  • Neuschwanstein castle in the early autmn
  • Queen Mary's bridge behind Neuschwanstein castle

Neuschwanstein Castle in Schwangau, Bavaria

...welcome to royal Bavaria!

Schloss Neuschwanstein in Schwangau, Allgäu, Bayern

King Ludwig II started the first planning and preparations for Neuschwanstein Castle in 1867/1868. The foundation stone was laid on 5th September 1869.

In a letter to Richard Wagner on 13th May 1868, King Ludwig II wrote:

 

"I intend to have rebuilt the old ruined castle Hohenschwangau close to the Pöllatschlucht in the authentic style of the old German knights... from where one can enjoy a splendid view to the sublime Säuling, the mountains of Tyrol and further into the plain..."

 

It is important to learn that King Ludwig II created Neuschwanstein exclusively as his private retreat and not as a representative castle to show to majestic powers.

Even before the completion of the castle, King Ludwig II died on 13th of June 1886 in Berg by Starnberg Lake.

Shortly after his mysterious death, Neuschwanstein Castle has been open to visitors and evolved over the years for many as the "landmark of Germany" or as "the eighth wonder of the world".

Visitor information: opening times, tickets and notes

Tickets and opening hours

Opening hours of Neuschwanstein Castle and Hohenschwangau Castle:

Neuschwanstein Castle:
1st April - 15th October: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  
16th October - 31st March: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Open daily except December 24th, 25th, 31st and January 1st.

Hohenschwangau Castle:
1st April - 15th October:  9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
16th October - 31st March: 10 a.m. -  4 p.m.
Open daily except December 24th and January 1st.

Ticket sale time from the Ticket Center Hohenschwangau:
1st April - 15th October: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. 
16th October - 31st March: 9 a.m. to 3.30 p.m.
Open daily except December 24th and January 1st.

Tickets for the Castles Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau and the Museum of the Bavarian Kings are available at the Ticket Center Hohenschwangau (also Reservations).

Tickets online reservieren

Guided tours inside the castles

Neuschwanstein Castle is open for visitors only with guides, you can buy the ticket or make a reservation at the Ticket Center in Hohenschwangau. The guided tour in German or English will take about 30 minutes.

Alternatively you may use the audio guide; these will also last about 30 minutes and are available in French, Dutch, Italien, Japanese, Mandarin, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Czech, Hungarian, Greek, Slovenian, Arabic, Korean and Thai.

If possible, please visit the castles in the morning during the summer months to avoid waiting times.

Accessibility?

During the tour a total of 165 steps up and 181 steps down must be accomplished. The castle offers an elevator for wheelchairs with standard dimensions. Please request its use at the Ticket Center  in Hohenschwangau.

Can my dog come with me in the castle?

Dogs and other pets are not allowed in the castle.

May I take pictures in the castle??

From the outside at anytime and as much as you want, but not from the inside. Due to the high visitor volume and the light sensitivity of the historic furnishings, visitors are not allowed to take any photographs. However, journalists and photographers can apply for a permit, where the times and conditions are determined. In this case, please contact the castle administration.

Interactive map (Parking, Tickets, Buses, Horse carriages, free WiFi)

Royal View: 360° Panoramic picture

The building Neuschwanstein

The portal - the entrance area of the Neuschwanstein Castle in Schwangau - Bavaria
The palais - the main building of the Neuschwanstein Castle in Schwangau - Bavaria
Neuschwanstein Castle seen from the North Shore of the Alpsee Schwangau

The"Castrum Swangowe" was first documented in 1090. Then, two castles were standing on the site of today's Neuschwanstein Castle - medieval castles named Hohenschwangau and Hinterhohenschwangau.

The name Neuschwanstein appears for the first time in a document from 1397. However  today's Hohenschwangau was built at this time below the present-day Neuschwanstein Castle in the district of Hohenschwangau.

The Crown Prince and later as King Ludwig II, spent his childhood in Hohenschwangau Castle. Through many hikes and walks around the ruins of the front and of the back Hohenschwangau, he discoverd the later site for his first castle.

In 1869 construction commenced of the Neuschwanstein Castles.

In the next two decades, hundreds of workers and craftsmen were employed on the site. King Ludwig II spent during the first years a few nights in the gatehouse of the castle in order to supervise the construction work.

The castle was built of stone construction and with other types of rock. The white limestone facade surfaces came from the nearby quarry, Alter Schrofen, from the district of Schwangau Alterschrofen.

When King Ludwig II died on 13th June 1886, the Neuschwanstein Castle had not yet been completed and the construction work continued until 1892.

Just six weeks after the death of King Ludwig II the castle opened again for visitors. In the first eight weeks, around 18.000 people visited the castle. Today the castle attracts some 1.5 million visitors a year.

The interiors of Neuschwanstein Castle

 

 

In the throne room, the forms of Romanesque, Gothic and Byzantine art were mixed and supplemented by the "new" technical achievements of the late 19th century.

The figures of the Patrona Bavariae and depicting St. George refer to the traditions of the region of the Allgäu.

Indicative of its natural surroundings, Neuschwanstein bears its motives from the world of theatre: Christian Jank, who provided the design drawings for the Castle, worked previously as a background artist and took his inspiration from his work in previous setting designs.

From over 200 rooms, only 20 were completed before the mysterious death of the king. Most of these areas are shown in the castle tours.

Queen Mary's bridge (Marienbrücke) close to Neuschwanstein castle

Queen Mary's bridge, the "Marienbrücke"

The Marienbrücke is about 15 minutes walking distance from Neuschwanstein Castle and is named after Queen Marie of Prussia, the mother of King Ludwig II.

King Maximilian II (the husband of Queen Marie) constructed in 1845, over the "Pöllatschlucht", a web for riders which his son King Ludwig II completed to become today's Marienbrücke.

The Marienbrücke is very popular today as a location for excellent photos of Neuschwanstein castle and its surroundings.

The gorge Pöllatschlucht below Neuschwanstein Castle

Die Pöllatschlucht bei Schloss Neuschwanstein in Schwangau im Allgäu

The Pöllatschlucht is the area below Neuschwanstein Castle. The castle was build on one of its few rocks; the Pöllatschlucht is part of many walks and hikes around the Castle.

The Pöllat is a mountain stream flowing over multiple waterfalls to the valley of Hohenschwangau village. Later, the Pöllat loses its wild character and continues flowing three kilometers northwards until Mühlberg, an estuary of the "Bannwaldsee", where the" Mühlberg Ach" merges.