Castlemania

Our bus tour of Linderhof castle and Neuschwanstein Castle (aka Disney’s “Cinderella Castle”) in the Bavarian Alps.  Both built by Ludwig II in the 1800s, based on what he thought a 17th century or medieval castle ought to look like.

Although we did get a guided tour inside the castles, you are NOT allowed to photograph the interiors (got a rather forceful reminder of that when one of our group was caught taking a few pictures with her cell phone). I don’t know why they don’t like the photography- fades the wallpaper? It doesn’t set off the alarms- although the very unhappy tour guide/photo police tried to convince the rogue tourist of this. All my (lawful) pics are of outside views.

Linderhof is a very small palace and it was the only castle completed during Ludwig II’s lifetime (probably because it was so small). He lived there for 8 years. The inside is very lavish, like a mini-Versailles.

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Linderhof castle- every few minutes a big fountain pulses out of that golden statue
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Side garden of Linderhof castle- no fountain out of that gold statue
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Alpine meadow shot from the bus
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Approaching Bavarian shack and Neuschwanstein Castle
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Thar she blows! This is not the angle they get on the merchandising. Bottom of the valley.
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You can take a horse buggy up and down the hill, or be cheap and walk (that would be us)
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International signage for international tourists
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View out the window from Neuschwanstein Castle, looking at lake and yellow ancestral castle.
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All those other buildings are tourism related.
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I think the photographers stand on that bridge to get the “classic” Cinderella castle pic.
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Hohenschwangau, the yellow castle, is the Wittlesbach ancestral home and is still in use.

What surprised me about Neuschwanstein Castle is that it was built very close to the ancestral home castle, Hohenschwangau, just on a different peak.  When you are in Neuschwanstein Castle you look down on the old family home castle. This Cinderella castle involves a lot of steps and is not very handicapped person friendly. The interiors have a lot of dark wood and small windows- but apparently Ludwig II was something of a night owl and he slept through most of the daylight hours. The castle is also decorated as a tribute to Wagner’s medieval operas, and the whole thing felt to me like a stage set. This castle was not completed and Ludwig II only lived in it for about 2 weeks before the Bavarians yanked him out of office for being unfit for office. And ‘unfit’ included the massive expenditures on fantasy palaces.

While it was interesting to see the famous Cinderella castle, and it is one of Germany’s most recognizable landmarks, I do not feel compelled to see it again. If someone wants to see it, I will put them on the bus.

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