Those with an interest in culture can visit Germany‘s most beautiful castles and palaces on a range of affordable, comfortable tours by coach, rail and car offered by a number of tour operators. There‘s certainly a wide selection to choose from, and it‘s always worth comparing packages depending on the level of customisation or service you require.
Living history behind thick, ancient walls
Germany’s castles and palaces are vibrant reminders of its colourful history from the Middle Ages through to the modern day.
Visiting these buildings offers an insight into what life was like for the emperors and kings, famous commanders and influential aristocrats who once resided within their walls.
Most of the castles and palaces are closely linked with the names of great rulers.
The Alter Hof (Old Court) in Munich, for example, was once home to King Ludwig the Bavarian (1314-1347). King Frederick I of Prussia (1688-1730) lived in Charlottenburg Palace in Berlin, and Frederick the Great of Prussia (1740-1786) resided in Sanssouci Palace and the New Palace in Potsdam.
But it was not only famous rulers that these architectural monuments were associated with.
Wartburg Castle’s finest hour came when Martin Luther found refuge there from his Catholic persecutors.
Undoubtedly the best-known castle in Germany, the magnificent Neuschwanstein Castle, is surrounded by picturesque Bavarian mountain scenery. The castle was built on top of a rugged cliff by Ludwig II between 1869 and 1886 in the 13th century Romanesque style. Its famous wall paintings depict various scenes from Wagner’s operas.
One of the finest and most visited castles in Europe, the thousand year-old Hohenzollern Castle (Burg Hohenzollern), is still the seat of the Hohenzollern family from which the kings of Prussia and the last German emperors were descended. The castle offers spectacular panoramic views across the Swabian Alb, which were once admired by Kaiser Wilhelm II.
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